With 12 months + of COVID-19 related change, many people are now reflecting on that time and looking at how COVID has re-shaped industries. No area of business seems to have got away unscathed, and product management is no exception.
The product management life cycle has changed thanks to COVID-19. Like many industries, product management has had to adapt to an uncertain future, and move forward with remote working in less than ideal circumstances.
Here’s some of the changes we’ve seen:
For starters, the idea of a timeline and life cycle that is set in stone has pretty much been disregarded thanks to COVID-19. That goes for every industry, as COVID has cancelled events, changed marketing methods and made the supply chain more volatile than ever.
When creating an exciting and managing a new product these times can be challenging. While uncertainty has been the keyword, one thing is for sure – the product management life cycle must be much more agile and flexible.
Here’s a few ways that the product management life cycle can become more agile:
With COVID-19 making every industry less certain, businesses have elongated their lifecycle in the hope that buying more time means they can launch in a more stable environment. To date, this hasn’t really happened, as COVID has continued to change the way we work and shift consumer attitudes.
A recent McKinsey study proved that this ever changing landscape has been pushing companies to refocus “their offerings rather than make huge leaps in product development”. This focus on elongating the product management life cycle has made the role of a product manager more long term.
One of the most obvious changes that COVID-19 thrust upon the product management life cycle is remote working. Creating and managing a product is thought to be a lot easier when people are face to face bouncing ideas off each other and solving problems.
Although remote work has impacted the product management life cycle, that’s not to say it has negatively affected it. The remote work change has meant that many companies have employed remote workers, often from abroad, to assist with their product management. By opening opportunities up to the global marketplace in a way they’re never done before, many businesses have realised the beauty of working with a remote, outsourced team.
Collaboration was always a key part of product management, however with remote working coming into play this has arguably been more vital. Collaborating with design teams, product teams, leadership teams and external stakeholders is a vital part of being a product manager, and with this work being remote, having the right tools in place is essential.
Engineering efficiency in COVID times relies upon effective communication, and product development is often optimized by utilizing platforms like slack, Monday.com, asana, GoogleSuite and the like. Collaborative platforms are the future of work, and the product management life cycle has had to welcome new remote working strategies into the arena.
Due to the increased demands of the role, the salary for a product manager in the US has increased. Not only that, but we’re seeing changing salaries for product managers across the globe in places like India too.
These salary increases have meant that product managers are one of the most sought after jobs in the US, with Glassdoor rating the role of product manager at Number 3.
Thanks to a longer product management life cycle, increased responsibility and a focus on customer research, the role of a product manager is more important than ever.
The product management life cycle has become even more important than before, with more risk attached to launching a product in a COVID-19 landscape. With more companies noticing the importance of product managers, the field has seen 32% growth over 2 years.
Skilled project managers are in high demand, and often companies are seeking them out on short notice.
More people are looking for certifications for product managers – that goes for both people looking to take on a certification for themselves, and employers looking to hire people with certifications. Due to the increased demand for product managers, employers are looking for certifications to ensure that product managers are ready for the job, and likewise contractors and employees want to prove that they have the skills.
People are not only searching for certifications for product managers, but also seeking out example resumes to try and help them apply for roles. The term sample “product manager resume” has seen a search increase of +140% over the past 12 months globally, proving that people are serious about getting the product manager roles out there.
Within these search terms, the topics of software and technology found themselves in the top 5 results, showing that digital transformation and digital product development is still playing a leading role in the industry.
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