Product Manager Job Description

The concept of modern Product Management first took shape at Procter & Gamble in 1931. The company wanted to become a brand-centric organisation, which called for more collaboration, transparency, and accountability in the workplace. 

Neil H. McElroy—the man behind the idea—also worked as an advisor for the founders of Hewlett Packard. Product Managers at HP became the voice of the customer internally. They brought decision making closer to the consumers, contributing to sustained business growth.

The Japanese philosophy of Kaizen, or continuous improvement, also added a new perspective to product management tasks. Here, the emphasis was on involving all employees, improving productivity, and making processes more efficient. Today, the product manager job description includes a touch of all these aspects.

The following section includes the responsibilities and requirements to help you understand the role better. You can use the information to fine-tune your job preparation strategy and identify the areas you need to upskill.

Product Manager Job Description

1. Role Summary

Product managers function as mini-entrepreneurs in the organization, taking responsibility for a product, managing IT and non-IT operations, and building brands from the ground up. They use their practical know-how to provide vision and direction to cross-functional teams and roll out products aligned with the company strategy. 

Moreover, this role involves executing several product lifecycle processes, such as product and market research, competitive analysis, product planning, and positioning, roadmap development, requirements management and communication, and product launch.

2. Responsibilities

  • Investigate and develop a deep understanding of customer experience.
  • Generate new ideas to fill gaps in products, improve customer satisfaction, and grow market share.
  • Create buy-in for the product vision with internal and external stakeholders instead of pushing ideas and causing resistance.
  • Prepare a comprehensive product strategy, including a roadmap and strategy for pricing and positioning.
  • Translate the chosen strategies into detailed requirements and prototypes for testing. 
  • Analyze the scope of activities and prioritize tasks based on business and customer impact.
  • Propose overall budget to accomplish goals, given the resources and timelines. 
  • Set pricing to meet the revenue and profitability targets and present regular revenue forecasts.
  • Work collaboratively with engineering and other functional teams to deliver the product.
  • Achieve a quick time-to-market with optimal resources. 
  • Prepare sales tools and collateral; brief and train sales staff to get the desired results.
  • Supervise product launches alongside top executives, Public Relations (PR) teams, and product management team members.
  • Evaluate consistency of promotional plans with product line strategy.
  • Ensure that the intended branding messages are conveyed effectively to the target audience.
  • Act as a product evangelist, increasing awareness about the product and its features.
  • Visit customers and clients to solicit feedback on the product and services.
  • Represent the company at client meetings, product demonstrations, launch events, conferences, etc.

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3. Educational Qualifications 

  • A Bachelor’s degree in Computer Science, Engineering, or related fields.
  • A postgraduate or equivalent qualification in Product Design, Engineering, Product Management (Preferred).

4. Desired Experience 

  • Overseeing elements of the entire product development lifecycle.
  • Managing cross-functional teams effectively in a matrix organization. 
  • Delivering superior product marketing strategies and sales training.
  • Working as a product developer, online advertiser, SEM specialist, or a non-managerial product role.
  • Applying technical knowledge in software development and web technology careers.
  • Documenting business cases, technical requirements, high-level use cases, revenue, ROI etc.
  • Solving complex, practical product problems and getting the job done. 

5. Required Skills

  • Domain Knowledge
  • Functional Skills
  • Industry Knowledge
  • Communication Skills
  • Innovation Orientation
  • Business Acumen
  • Self Confidence
  • Networking
  • Customer Orientation
  • Data Analysis
  • Product Design
  • Multitasking and Time Management

With this, we have given you a summary of a standard product manager job description. Let us now look at the current and prospects for this role in India. 

Scope of Product Manager Careers in India

Product managers establish a mission, vision, and strategy for a product. And their work doesn’t stop there. They are closely involved in bringing the product to life. This way, they guide a product from conception through design and into its market release. Whether it is an IT firm or a non-IT company, product managers guarantee the success of product lines and services. They are the wind beneath the wings of any offer a business puts out for the customers. 

Additionally, product managers continually strive for improvement in products. They work closely with other teams and departments, including Research & Development, Engineering, Manufacturing, Marketing and Sales, and Customer Support. Such a focus is essential to meet customer expectations in today’s highly competitive market environment. 

It is, therefore, not surprising that a 2019 survey listed Product Management as one of the most promising jobs of the year. The demand for the position has only gone up since. 

  • The Indian IT industry, especially in B2B software products, is witnessing a consistent demand for product leadership roles. 
  • Rising digital adoption across business sectors, prompted by the pandemic, further accelerates product management career paths.
  • Emerging technologies like Big Data, Cloud, AI, and IoT are opening new avenues for product managers in the Industrial Revolution 4.0.

It is clear from the above points that product managers will not be obsolete anytime soon. They will be earning much more than engineers soon. According to Payscale, the average product manager salary is ₹17,41,318 per year.

Here are the estimated pay grades according to the number of years of experience:

  • Less than one year (Entry-level): ₹9,00,000 per year
  • 1-4 years (Early career): ₹13,00,000 per year
  • 5-9 years (Mid-career): ₹17,00,000 per year
  • 10-19 years (Experienced): ₹21,00,000 per year
  • More than 20 years (Late career): 29,00,000 per year

Upskill for Continued Career Growth

If you are looking to kickstart your career in project management, gain a promotion, or advance to a high-paying job, upGrad’s Product Management Certification Programme can help. This online course has global recognition from Duke Corporate Education and provides personalised mentorship from industry experts.

The curriculum includes everything from product roadmaps and user research to prototype development and product analytics. Hands-on exposure to digital tools (for example, Excel, SQL, Google Analytics), industry projects, and dedicated placement support are other distinguishing features of the program. You can also specialize in an area like Growth Product Management, Data Science, and Digital Transformation. 

Depending on your profile, you can go on to occupy the following designations in an organization:

  • Associate Product Manager
  • Technical Product Manager
  • Product Marketing Manager
  • Senior Product Manager
  • Director of Product
  • Product Owner
  • Chief Product Officer

Now that you have studied all the constituents of a product manager job description, you can pursue these career tracks with clarity and focus! 

What are the job responsibilities of a product management role?

A product manager is like a mini-entrepreneur or CEO who leads a product from conception through design into launch. The successful performance of this job requires an analysis of the market, customer needs, and competitive conditions. Next, it involves developing product roadmaps, pricing and positioning strategies, marketing plans, etc. It also includes working with technical and functional teams to deliver a product or service to end-users quickly and cost-effectively. Product leadership is an iterative task as the work doesn’t end after the launch. Therefore, product managers are always on the lookout for gaps and improvements for improving customer experience and sustaining business growth.

What are the required educational qualifications, skills, experience to become a product manager?

A typical product manager job description lists a bachelor’s or master’s degree in computer science, engineering, product design, or management as the minimum under the minimum eligibility. Working knowledge of software development, web technologies, business case writing, revenue forecasting, and online advertising comes in handy for this career path. Additionally, familiarity with the product development lifecycle, strategy creation, data analytics, team management, and communication can help you qualify for senior positions.

What is the future scope of a product management career in India?

Product managers are needed across industry sectors in India, be it in IT companies or non-IT organisations. This demand is likely to pick up further as digital adoption increases and emerging technologies like Big Data, AI, Cloud, and IoT continue to gain ground. Prospects in the B2B software product arena are especially favourable. Payscale estimates that product managers in India currently earn an average salary of Rs. 17,00,000 per year. The product manager salary at the entry-level stands around Rs. 9,00,000 per year. As you gain more experience, you can grow to a pay grade close to Rs. 30,00,000 per year.

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