A rising demand for product managers
Data released recently by SEEK shows that product managers are in serious demand, with job opportunities up 53% year-on-year to June 2015. Doug Blue, Product Director at SEEK, says the data is no surprise, given the increasing reliance businesses across all industries are having on technology.
“Our data shows that product managers are in the top 10 roles that are hard to fill across information technology. It’s a relatively new career path, so businesses are struggling to fill the roles with managers who have the right technical background, but also the experience behind them.”
The data showed that a career in product management garnered an average salary of over $100,000, making it one of the highest paid specialties within information technology.
To understand the importance of product managers, consider that for every new product that goes to market, someone needs to conceptualise it, work closely with design and development teams, and launch the product. This is a product manager’s job.
So, that’s why, for the first time, a large product management gathering will be held on home soil in Melbourne, Australia.
‘Leading the Product’ is a community event championed by product managers from companies like Instagram, Expert360 and Yammer, and will feature SEEK’s own CEO, Andrew Bassat. It is a place to ignite passion for developing and managing great products and services.
It’s good timing too, as the industry shows no sign of slowing. Adrienne Tan, CEO and Founder of Brainmates, a company that provides professional product management consulting, says the demand for product management in Australia is only going to increase.
“I’m seeing more businesses that are committed to upskilling their product managers, and demand for training is up 300% in the past 12 months. Those already working in the field are hungry for career development and networking opportunities. To see the calibre of speakers and the strong demand for tickets to ‘Leading the Product ‘reinforces that this is a profession to watch,” concludes Tan.
Typically, product managers come from engineering or marketing backgrounds, but equally as many successful product managers start off in customer service or technical support roles, then head into product quality assurance. Across all these roles they build up their knowledge about the market, the customer and the products, which positions them well to drive innovation.
According to Blue, businesses are already challenged to find the talent they need to keep pace, with many Australians tempted to work overseas.
“We want to show the world that successful, rewarding and challenging product management careers can be had in Australia, and to do that we need to be exposing professionals to the best in the industry from both Australia, and overseas,” he concludes.
Read the full SEEK Industry Insights Reports March 2015.