Careers at Delio – A day in the life of a Product Owner
It may sound fairly obvious, but creating a product that solves problems for customers is a fundamental basis for every business. However, behind this simplistic statement lies the hugely complex task of determining exactly what the product should actually do to solve client problems. What features provide the most value? How will clients be using it? How should the delivery be sequenced? These are just some of the questions that a product owner needs to answer on a daily basis, so as part of our careers at Delio series, we asked Max to tell us about how he goes about doing this.
What does a product owner at Delio do?
Put simply, I take ownership of the future focus, direction and iteration of areas of our private markets platform. To achieve this I spend much of my time understanding client problems, discovering solutions, writing requirements, and prioritising valuable additions. I’m given the autonomy to shape how Delio’s product evolves to better meet the needs of our clients.
In real terms, I’m part of the team that is responsible for making sure that our private markets platform enables financial institutions to distribute investment opportunities more effectively, efficiently and compliantly. Ultimately though, everything I do boils down to one statement – how is this going to help clients increase revenue and reduce costs compliantly.
What does a typical day look like?
It may sound like a cliche, but there genuinely isn’t such a thing as a typical day for me. That’s mostly a blessing as it makes the job really interesting, although during particularly busy periods I sometimes think that more structure would be helpful!
I describe my role as ‘multi-directional’ because I get to work with many different parts of the business. I could be interviewing clients to gather insights into how they use the platform, debating on how we should approach new functionality, or simply trying to gain a better understanding of a problem that we need to solve. This makes things really varied, which suits me and my personality. I enjoy solving puzzles and problems, so I find it highly satisfying when I gain an appreciable understanding of client challenges and can find a solution.
What do you like best about being a product owner?
There’s no question for me – it’s the autonomy. I love being in control of my own work and Delio’s approach to product management allows me to do this. I also really enjoy the people element of my role; engaging with clients and learning more about what they do on a day-to-day basis, or working with our engineering team and helping them to understand what needs to be built. As a naturally communicative person, this exposure to different people both internally and externally is something that I thoroughly enjoy. I also really enjoy the ‘discovery’ aspect of my role and seeing how a product or idea iterates over time.
What would you say to people considering the next stage of their careers at Delio?
Having previously worked in larger businesses, I was often taught fairly prescriptive ways of doing things. At Delio, the approach has been very different and I’ve been given the opportunity to take full ownership for my area of the product and all of the responsibility that this comes with. In all honesty, this is both exciting and intimidating – I’ve learnt a lot in a short period of time.
On reflection however, this has taught me so much more about myself and my abilities, so I feel like my skills and experience have developed rapidly during my time here; plus, there are always plenty of people to bounce ideas off and validate your thinking. What I can say is that ‘textbook answers’ are not the way we work here and this isn’t the type of business where you can wait to be told what to do. So, as long as you’re ambitious and self-motivated, Delio is the sort of company where you genuinely have an opportunity to shape how things are done for the better.
What makes an excellent product owner?
Personally, I’d say that having a genuine interest in the field in which the product operates really helps to make the job as interesting as it can be. Given the lack of returns offered by traditional savings, investing seems like one of the few routes open to people like myself who are looking to make their money work as hard as it can. The people I speak to on a daily basis are investment professionals at some of the world’s most respected institutions, so the opportunity to learn from them is fantastic on both a personal and professional level.
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