Product Manager, Part-time, 3 days a week, £40k FTE (£24k actual) based in Oxford, Ref 1607
This company based in Oxford, and with offices in Morocco and Dubai, are finders and curators of hard facts, covering the territories of the Middle East & North Africa where public information is not readily available. Their clients rely on the combination of investigative skills and knowledge banks to establish unequivocal facts upon which intelligence is built and decisions become informed. Their aim is to be the largest and most comprehensive source of company information on the MENA region available in the market.
The role of the Product Manager is to ensure that the core product remains relevant to their customers, by developing new features and functionalities to the online platform. In this way the role sits at the nexus of several functions within the organisation - including strategy, marketing, IT development, sales - and therefore demands strong organisational skills, stakeholder management and creativity. The role needs to be commercially proactive, supporting new client development activities and spotting opportunities as and when they arise, but also responsive to feedback from existing customers and partners.
Reporting to the Managing Partner, the Product Manager role will act both as a force multiplier to the core team, but also provide support to key functions when required.
The principal responsibilities are as follows:
Product management and development
- Together with the Managing Partner draw up a product development plan, with time lines and milestones and deliverables, which maps out the evolution of platform over the next 12-36 months
- Work with multiple internal stakeholders (analysts, IT development, operations team) to deliver that plan, ensuring that our online platform continues to add new content, features and functionalities in a way that is aligned to customer / market needs
- Work with outsourced designers and web application developers to ensure that our product retains its intuitive user experience and is visually appealing
- Identify and scope opportunities to develop new products, functionalities or service lines within the company portfolio, which draws on their investigative skills, in-house knowledge, and deep repositories of data
Testing and quality assurance
- Regularly test the online product and seek external feedback so that every change they make is rooted in improving the user experience
- Prior to releases of new functionalities on the platform, work with outsourced developers to ensure that rigorous testing has taken place and that any knock-on effects have been foreseen
- Work with data quality team to ensure that errors, inaccuracies and system glitches are kept to a minimum
Strategy and marketing support
- Have input into the development of our business strategy across emerging markets; They are a young, nimble business looking to pivot according to market opportunities and client needs
- Provide support to specific marketing initiatives as and when required, such as drafting of marketing communications, videos, client survey content, and interpretation of data to inform product development
- Provide support to business development initiatives as and when required; this might include attending client meetings, seminars and conferences
- Provide support to large client projects as and when they arise; these may include data integration, sector mapping or general market research projects
- Work with the Managing Partner and the rest of the senior management team to identify opportunities, trends, competitors and disruptive forces in the information services market that have the potential to affect the business in the long term
Technical: Must have a solid grounding in product management, marketing and communications. Knowledge and experience of the consultative sales cycle, particularly in a small company environment is important. Experience of the investigative due diligence and information services sector, along with knowledge of company information sources and data research techniques in the MENA region, would be a distinct advantage
Authenticity: As a manager you recognise the communication needs of others and act on them. You demonstrate in-depth awareness of competition and best practice across commercial businesses. You complete cost benefit appraisals before taking business decisions, and prepare business plans for your own area of responsibility
Tenacity: Managing projects across a variety of disciplines, you anticipate and reduce problems whilst taking action that leads to measurable improvements against goals. You share learning with others, helping others rectify errors or accuracies, and acting as a role model for others. You speak up when your views are different, appraising and reassessing decisions as appropriate
Relationships: When reviewing your team’s performance, you provide constructive feedback, agree objectives and identify training needs. To create a high-performing team environment, you respect and value the expertise of others, you demonstrate an interest in team members, and generate enthusiasm for the company’s vision
Other requirements specific to the role
In addition to excellent written and spoken English, knowledge and experience of the business environment in the Middle East & North Africa would be an added advantage. Clearly, there’s an investigative thread to what they do, which will suit self-starters with a natural curiosity, an analytical mind and an interest in writing well. Tenacity and a sense of humour are also desirable qualities. The successful candidate will be educated at least to degree level.