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To our client, an international telecom company, we’re looking for an experienced Product Owner to act in a very high complex & challenging environment.
We’re looking for a highly motivated and self driven Agile Software Development Product Owner (PO) for the new software-defined networking (SDN) platform. This is a highly visible project as part of the larger ABC software transformation.
The Product Owner will be the member of the Agile Team who serves as the customer proxy, and is responsible for working with Product Management and other stakeholders—including other product owners and other teams—to define and prioritize the Team Backlog so that the solution effectively addresses program priorities while maintaining technical integrity. Ideally, the product owner is co-located with the development team. The product owner also attends most relevant product management meetings, planning, and backlog/vision refinement sessions. This extended PO/PM team has the primary responsibility for what gets built.
Preparation and Participation in Release Planning.
- As a virtual member of the extended Product Management team, the product owner is heavily involved in Program Backlog refinement, preparation for Release Planning and also has a significant role in the planning event itself. Prior to the event, the product owner updates the team backlogs and typically participates in reviewing and contributing to program Vision, Roadmap and content presentations.
- During the event, the product owner is involved with Story definition, providing clarifications necessary to assist the team with their story estimates, sprint loading, story sequencing, and drafting the team’s specific objectives for the upcoming Program Increment.
- Backlog Refinement. With input from the product manager and other stakeholders, the product owner has the primary responsibility to build, prune, and maintain the team backlog. The backlog consists mostly of user stories, but also includes defects, Refactors and infrastructure work. Backlog items are prioritized based on user value, and time and other team dependencies which are determined in Release Planning.
- Iteration Planning. The product owner reviews and re-prioritizes the backlog as part of the preparatory work for Iteration Planning, including coordination of content dependencies with other product owners. During the iteration planning meeting, the product owner is the main source for user story detail and priorities, and has the responsibility to accept the final iteration plan
- Just-in-time story elaboration. Most backlog items are elaborated into user stories for implementation. This may happen prior to the iteration, during iteration planning, or during the iteration itself. While any team member can write user stories and acceptance criteria, the product owner has the primary responsibility to keep the process flowing.
- Supporting Acceptance Test Driven Development. POs participate in development of story acceptance criteria, draft them when feasible, and provide examples.
- Accepting stories into the baseline. The product owner is the only team member who can accept stories into the baseline. This includes validation that the story meets acceptance criteria and that each has the appropriate, persistent acceptance tests, and otherwise meets its definite of done. In so doing, the product owner also fulfills a quality assurance function, focusing primarily on fitness for use.
- Participating in Team Demo and Retro. As an integral member of the team, and the one responsible for requirements, the product owner has an important role in the Team Demo, reviewing and accepting stories in the baseline, and in the Iteration Retrospective, where the teams gather to improve their processes.
- Iterations and teams both serve a larger purpose – frequent, reliable, and continuous release of value-added, system-level software. During the course of each PI, the product owner coordinates content dependencies with other product owners. This is often accomplished in part by attendance at weekly product owner team meetings. The product owner also has an instrumental role in producing the System Demo for program stakeholders.
Inspect and Adapt
- Teams address their larger impediments in the program Inspect and Adapt workshop. There, the product owner works across teams to define and implement improvement stories that will increase the velocity and quality of the program.
Skills and Requirements
- Passion to create experiences that delight customers.
- Ability to translate a high level vision into an executable strategy and keep the team focused to deliver on time.
- Energetic self-starter and innovative thinker who balances strong customer and quality focus.
- Strong leader who prioritizes well, communicates clearly and effectively, and enjoys working in a group of talented, opinionated, high energy and result oriented individuals.
- Strong customer skills and ability to follow through to resolve customer issues.
- Ability to act as a fully integrated team member, understand technical implementation matters, prioritize technical issues against business value and help teams make tradeoffs where necessary.
- Ability to engage and interact with users and customers, gain a deep understanding of their needs and represent that knowledge to the rest of the software team.
- Demonstrated expertise and experience in agile development methodologies is preferred.
- Prior knowledge of Agile tools such as Rally a plus.
- 4 year degree (Information Systems, Computer Science, Business Administration or relational functional field) and/or equivalent combination of education or work experience
- 5+ years of experience in product management, platform/technology/services strategy with proven track record of successfully launching products/platforms
- Understanding and commitment to Agile Software Development