Product Owner (8036A)

LOCATION: SAN FRANCISCO, CA

Our client is a San Francisco-based (financial district), self-funded start-up incorporated in 2015. The company’s patented technologies provide real-time automation for provisioning and maintenance of agile and secure connectivity among any combination of physical server, virtual machine (VM), container and IoT endpoints. Our client has the radical distinction of replacing centralized network controllers and device configuration with the world’s first microprogram-based, network-as code solution for making networking responsive to applications. They will make network deployment to support application as simple, portable and flexible as containers are making application deployment.

They are currently seeking a well-trained Product Owner for the entire product suite. Our client is currently following the lean startup model including Agile development and Continuous Integration with the bulk of the development team in the Ukraine. As the only product owner in the company, you will be working closely with the Co-CEO, who is the product manager responsible for the market-facing decisions and functions, and the CTO, who is responsible for the technology and engineering. The Co-CEO, the CTO, and the Engineering team will be your key internal stakeholders. In addition, customer prospects and partners will be your external stakeholders. You will be a key player in achieving a compelling MVP at each stage of the company’s growth.

Once you have learned what our client has already built, your mission will be to present a clear vision of the product and ongoing feature and architectural enhancements to customers and engineering. The key is to refine this vision into “When?” and “What?” as defined by planning a schedule, and comprehensible user stories. You will have to be highly effective at prioritizing the details of user stories so that they can help engineering give effort estimations and evaluate alternative solutions to obstacles so that you can make the tradeoffs. Your role is to continuously present a rolling timeline of the product releases to align the stakeholders to crisply execute the product vision with the resources available.

In order to have a technical basis on which to build your vision, you must have proven product experience with networking and cloud networking (VPC) technologies with such companies as VMWare, Cumulus Network, BigSwitch, Ansible, Viptela, Kubernetes, Docker, and AWS, to name a few.

Key Responsibilities of the Product Owner

  • Use all available channels, including direct interaction with customers, attendance at seminars, online researches, etc., in order to learn and prioritize the most acute problems in the networking domain.
  • Provide vision and direction to the Agile development team and stakeholders throughout the project.
  • Create the list of the existing solutions/products that can solve networking problems and create the list of the problems that are remained not addressed today or were solved unsatisfactory.
  • Define product vision, road-map and growth opportunities with the company leaders.
  • Convert knowledge of the customer’s problems in the list of product features. Create the list of the features that their product (1) must have, (2) good to have, (2) amazing to have.
  • Work closely with Product Management to create and maintain a product backlog according to business value or ROI.
  • Research and analyze the functionality of competing products in the market, as well as the problems users are trying to solve.
  • Prove to CEO, Co-CEO and CTO that list of the features (1), (2), (3) can give the company’s products a competitive edge and induce customer to try it.
  • Assess value, develop cases, and prioritize stories, epics and themes to ensure work focuses on those with maximum value that are aligned with product strategy.
  • Plan and prioritize product feature backlog and development for the product based on resource estimates from the developers.
  • Provide backlog management, iteration planning, and elaboration of the user stories.
  • Lead the planning for product releases and set expectation for delivery of new functionality.
  • Clearly communicate the Business Requirements to the product planning and execution teams.
  • Prioritize the features in the Backlog before Sprint ensuring that the team always has an adequate amount of prior prepared tasks to work on
  • Provide an active role in mitigating impediments impacting successful team completion of Release/Sprint Goals
  • Helping the Scrum Master organize Sprint Review Meetings.
  • Attend Sprint Planning meetings.
  • Keep abreast with Agile/Scrum best practices and new trends.

Essential Skills of the Product Owner

  • Recent hands-on experience with the products that are made to provide networking services for various workloads including bare metal, VMs and containers.
  • Deep understanding of the values that existing products for Networking deliver to the users in each operational domain.
  • Has a proven understanding of how to be Lean and Agile at an organization level, has navigated requirements that change with time, and knows how to adapt the changes without breaking the cadence of the development team.
  • Has successful experiences in Agile Software development and testing and has the insight into software engineering to give ample room for the development team to preview and execute their work.
  • Is known for team-orientation with excellent collaboration and strong interpersonal skills. Shares and communicates their feedback effectively so that it will lead the team to the success path.
  • Has demonstrated the ability to translate complex concepts and technologies into discrete business-oriented user stories, features, and architectural enhancements; including introducing cutting-edge features of products where appropriate.
  • Is energetic and can be present in daily Scrum and Retrospective meetings, sprint review meetings, product planning, and product strategy meetings.
  • Has strong speaking and presentation skills to communicate effectively to both technical (TDM) and business (BDM) level audiences in simple, compelling and differentiated manner.
  • Is Driven, self-motivated, and comfortable working in a fast-paced, complex environment with an ability to juggle multiple projects/priorities simultaneously.
  • Shows sharp analytical and problem-solving skills, along with the ability to think strategically while working tactically.
  • Has excellent organizational and time management skills.
  • Is a creative thinker able to craft a vision and decide on a plan.
  • Pays attention to details.

Your Profile as Product Owner This is a technically-oriented product owner role. To be successful, you MUST be able to understand the underlying technology, and how a customer uses it to solve problems. The technology areas that you will need to understand to be successful include the fundamentals of: IP networking (L2/L3 switching, routing, MPLS, WAN, SD-WAN, VXLAN), next-generation data center (SDDC, DCI, Cloud, virtualization, NSX, SDN, NFV, Network Segmentation), application/service delivery and optimization, server and application virtualization. Key to helping define the future of this product is your knowledge of service orchestration, automation, network management, service management, application delivery management.

  • Minimum of 2+ years of Agile Software product ownership experience and 2+ years in software development (or 4+ years of product ownership) in enterprise infrastructure automation and software in the top-tier enterprise market segment. As an alternative experience, we would consider past experience in a technical Product management or SE roll within this segment
  • Proven track record of writing and delivering all the user story and planning content to support a technical product line.
  • Experience with enterprise networking, data center networks, SDN and NFV is mandatory
  • Experience with service assurance, network monitoring, security monitoring, and analytics solutions is highly desirable
  • BSCS or BSEE required.

Our client offers competitive compensation and awesome benefits/perks. Additionally, they’re looking for someone that wants to become a part of a fast growing, highly technical and passionate team.

If this sounds like you, send your resume to adam@peopleconnectstaffing.com

and let’s chat!

Keywords: product owner, networking, agile, scrum, Kanban, SDN, NFV, SDDC, DCI, Cloud, virtualization, NSX, SDN, NFV, Network Segmentation