It’s amazing to see how the influence of technology and the internet has seeped into almost every aspect of our lives – whether you’re writing a shopping list, making an appointment to get your car fixed or watching TV, there’s a good chance you’re going to use an internet-connected app.
This has meant that software development has become an increasingly important element for companies all over the world, and with it the role of Product Manager has turned into an essential position.
It’s the Product Manager who decides what should be added or changed in a product, bridging the gap between the research and development, sales, marketing and management teams as well as key customers. Without a Product Manager companies wouldn’t be able to ensure a smooth development process and create products that people want to use.
But while everyone knows just how significant product managers are to the company’s development, there are a surprisingly small number of SaaS platforms created to help product managers get their jobs done.
For most product managers this means using a range of different applications and platforms to manage and plan your product throughout its lifecycle.
However, recently the introduction of dedicated product management platforms like Craft.io have changed the game. Unifying the product management process in one location can make the job much easier than ever before
As a product manager you are the link between numerous stakeholders
- The sales department want to give you the feedback they have from customers to let you know what the customers like, dislike and want from your product
- The RnD team need to know what to develop and in what order
- The company’s management wants to know the overall plans and strategy you have for your product
- The training team needs to know what features are coming up next so they can plan their programme
- Key customers want to know the main features you’ve got planned
So quality communication is essential to make sure that everyone is on the same page, aware of what they need to and need to do in order to create a smooth process which results in the creation of quality products.
Applications Product Managers Use
For product managers who have not opted to use a centralised dedicated product management platform, the alternative is to use a range of software choices which do not always link together nicely.
For example, planning apps like Asana or Trello are great for task management and prioritization and you can use excel or powerpoint to create roadmaps.
Feedback could be collected via email and saved in Word or Google Docs.
But while these are all popular and high quality software choices, when you need to access the information you need and present your plans to colleagues or customers you might end up struggling.
A Centralized, Dedicated Platform
The alternative to using various apps to manage your product is to implement a dedicated centralized platform.
In our experience Craft.io is probably the best and most comprehensive option out there. It contains a fantastic interactive features table where you can least all your current and upcoming features.
Each feature can be linked to the roadmap and feedback management tools as well as your overall strategic plans. And anyone who has access can make comments on features so you improve internal communication. At the same time, Craft can be integrated with task management tools like Jira, so you send can features to development at the click of a button and the RnD team can be made aware of any changes.
The roadmap builder is beautifully designed and very intuitive to use. It is best for showing your long term goals and initiatives so you can present it each quarter or half year to colleagues, management and key customers.
And the Idea Portal is a separate website that gives colleagues and users the opportunity to give their feedback on your product. Any feedback can be directly connected to any feature so you can see how much a feature is desired by the users.
Overall, using Craft replaces all the apps you were using as a product manager, making the process smoother, faster and far easier.