Why Do We Need Product Management in IT Industry?
In the last few years, the IT industry has seen a significant boom, from new technologies like Artificial Intelligence, Big Data, Cloud, Internet of Things, and several others emerging in everyday business processes. Know more about product management process.
This increasing reliance on the IT industry in every sphere has created an enormous opportunity for companies to expand their portfolio and increase their reach. However, with the impact of COVID-19 and rising demand, there is also a need to manage these requirements with limited budgets and resources. To help the IT industry manage this situation, product management and planning play a crucial role.
From competitive pricing, complex requirements, and crunched deadlines, product management is critical to managing these product deliveries while ensuring product quality, testing, and other processes are taken care of. In this blog, let us understand the need for product management in IT industry and how one can build a successful career in the IT industry as a product manager.
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Product Management Helps Focus on the Customer First
Product management often focuses on inbound (product development) and outbound (product marketing) functions. This helps create a product that is efficient and delivered in the stipulated timeline and one that the market needs.
The product manager manages the process right from its initial phase of development till the time it reaches the customer. And this creates the need to know the customer requirement and market trends in advance, creating products that aim to make sure the customer’s voice is always heard.
The product management process often includes ideation, evaluation, development, analysis, and delivery. But in addition to delivery, feedback is one of the most overlooked and underplayed functions.
By using customer feedback, organizations don’t just create happy customers but also develop products that are built keeping customer preferences in mind. This indirectly helps to generate more business for the future while the product gets updated steadily to be competitive and advanced to market requirements.
Product Management Creates Processes for Efficiency and Optimum Quality
Operational efficiency and the loss of product quality due to strenuous timelines are often a subject of debate, but with proper planning, these issues are often resolved amicably. Product management leverages the power of agile development processes and methodologies, which is the most popular approach in the modern IT firm.
The framework ensures each department begins working on its set of activities simultaneously and doesn’t create a roadblock or dependency on each other. While this optimization is excellent for independent activities, dependencies are communicated in advance, making sure departments are aware and work efficiently as a team.
Product management in IT industry thus helps create efficient processes while also ensuring dependencies and quality checks are managed. Since each activity happens in tandem, organizations benefit by creating faster product deliveries without compromising on any parameters. The requirements and expectations are also finalized before development, making the entire process one that organizations prefer.
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Product Management Helps to Keep Budget and Deliveries in Check
Often, large IT companies face difficulties in synthesizing and integrating all their functions harmoniously. For example, there can be instances where the CFO feels that marketing is overspending; technology needs more market intelligence while marketing feels the development team needs to be more customer-focused.
In these cases, instead of having the CEO or a higher up act as the mediator, the product manager can be the eyes and ears. Product management creates avenues for working together towards a common goal, as it communicates with each department to create a product delivery roadmap and feature list that is in-line with business requirements.
This way, product managers can ensure marketing knows the actual budget, development teams are aware of their schedule and expectations, while costs are managed efficiently.
Thus, product management in IT companies is vital from the beginning to ensure the organization manages its growth potential by focusing on the MVP (Most Valuable Product) rather than focusing on several target areas.
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Product Management Creates Scope for Innovation and Teamwork
In the digital age, product delivery and roadmaps cannot just include accessing requirements and delivering features for it. In the dynamic market, products that allow scope for innovation and updates are ones that are relevant and create future-ready systems.
Product management in IT industry can help to create avenues for brainstorming and innovation, to help create an optimal output from the product using new ideas and emerging tech. Ideation is the first step in product management, creating a set process and structure to ensure innovation is implemented and channelized correctly in the organization.
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In an industry that is looking for innovative ways to enhance business processes and manage increasing costs, product management in the IT industry is critical. A product manager’s role in improving delivery output and streamlining the process is one that the industry needs the most, and that creates an excellent scope for product management.
Product managers can help organizations create a well throughout roadmap, implement quality checks, and execute plans to ensure the product delivery activities are always on track!
If you are highly intrigued by what you read, you can enroll in the Post Graduate Certificate in Product Management offered by upGrad. The certification program delivered by experts will help you kickstart your career to be a successful product manager.
Not just that, you can leverage your certification to transition successfully into the role or scale-up in your current role to help your organization deliver optimum products and manage delivery efficiently.
Who is an IT product manager?
The specific responsibilities of a product manager can be difficult to define since these vary from one organization to another. But in general, an IT product manager is the professional responsible for interfacing between the product teams and the client, balancing specific customer requirements, and maintaining the project trajectory and timelines. As an IT product manager, it is also important that they are familiar with coding and technology. They are mainly responsible for leading the product from conceptualization to success and guiding the teams involved over a smooth path. Product managers must have excellent market research and people-management skills.
Do product managers need to know programming languages?
Product managers have to interact daily with application developers who are involved in product development projects. However, that does not mean they have to engage in writing code; they are responsible for leading the strategy and direction of product development. They have to understand and convey the pain points of end-users and clarify their needs to the product developers. However, even though they are not directly involved in coding, having a basic understanding of the technologies in use helps product managers to handle teams better and prioritize tasks. It can also help them support the product development teams better and drive informed decision-making.
Is the job of a product manager difficult and stressful?
A product manager's job comes with multifaceted responsibilities. That is why, even though this job is highly fulfilling and lucrative, it comes with some levels of stress. But challenges are part and parcel of any job role, and that of a product manager is no exception. There might be some lack of cooperation among team members, differences of opinion, hurdles in the process of product development, changes in customer requirements, and many other kinds of challenges that product managers have to deal with. But finally, an efficient product manager can always overcome these hurdles with tact and experience.