IoT Product Manager

Full-Time Midlands UK Salary: £55k + bonus + excellent benefits Closes: 2021-03-11

About us

Loxam Group is the third largest equipment rental business globally, turning over >€2bn per annum.  The Group is established in 30 countries, including 21 in Europe and 9 others around the world, including the Middle East, Morocco, Brazil and Colombia.

Loxam Powered Access is a self-contained division within the Loxam Group that specialises in the rental of powered access equipment. We are the European and Middle Eastern market leader, servicing B2B customers in sectors including construction, telecoms, nuclear, utilities, transport, film & TV.

Loxam Powered Access has a centralised IT & Digital function, including a nascent Digital Product Management team.  The Industrial Internet of Things is a key area in the digital transformation of our service offering to customers.

Role purpose

Our digital product managers conceive, define, test, deliver, promote, monitor and refine digital products relating to our B2B customers, in areas such as Internet of Things and ecommerce, to maximise business results. They lead on technical pre-sales support, conduct customer research, and work with key stakeholders across business and technology to develop and convey product vision. They focus on the end-to-end customer experience for their assigned products.

The Product Manager – IoT is responsible for our products and services which make use of the Internet of Things.  This includes both Operational Technology (OT) such as machine telemetry and IT, and spans all aspects of Digital, Data and Technology relating to IoT.

Our current IoT customer offering is an Azure-based IoT platform, branded as PAD AMS (Asset Management Services). The AMS name reflects the fact that our core offering to customers is around improved management of the equipment on hire to them.  AMS collects data from multiple telemetry services and other sources such as ERP systems.

Our IoT activities will extend over time over and above the current AMS service, becoming fully integrated with our core customer experience and how we do business.

The Product Manager – IoT is responsible for the operational efficiency of our IoT services; the adoption of these products and services by our customers; and the ongoing development to differentiate Loxam PAD and provide us with a competitive advantage.

·         Operational efficiency: working with operational teams at a detailed and day-to-day level to ensure processes are fit for purpose, colleagues are trained appropriately by our Training Academy, monitoring compliance and resolving discrepancies.  This requires a hands-on pragmatist who understands that high quality “business as usual” is as important as new feature development.

·         Customer adoption: delivering a coherent, compelling, consistent value proposition to customers.  The role has responsibility for avoiding the bespoking of our products for individual customers, maintaining a standardised product which meets the needs of most of our customers.  The Product Manager will advocate internally (to colleagues) and externally (to customers), championing the product vision and value proposition.

·         Ongoing development: the Product Manager acts as SME for all elements of the IoT solution – from telemetry devices to third party vendors to data warehouse to customer UIs.  The role sets an ambitious but realistic product roadmap in line with guidance from senior stakeholders. The Product Manager is responsible for ensuring the roadmap is delivered to time, scope and cost; providing a clear and effective solution architecture which covers Business processes, Data flows, Applications and Technology.

Key Responsibilities

■ Research and define the customer segments served by the company’s Internet of Things products. This will be based on developing a deep understanding of customer goals, the value customers derive from the product, and the business capabilities and digital strategies of the business domain.

■ Support sales activity through face to face and remote technical pre-sales support, helping drive new account acquisition and revenue growth. Work out how to meet customer needs using current or existing roadmap activity, avoiding bespoke customisations.   Support pre-sales activities, e.g., support scoping, estimation, planning, pricing, and contract/statement-of-work writing.

■ Work closely with sales and marketing teams to convey the product vision, continuously verify that the product fulfils that vision (measured by customer value and business outcomes) and help the team ensure it is building the right product.  Develop and sustain a network of local IoT champions.

■ Analyse competing offerings or capabilities to understand how to offer the differentiated products or services that customers prefer.

■ Orchestrate a variety of stakeholders to achieve a shared vision of product goals and priorities, own and develop the product roadmap.  Take a broadly-based view of product responsibility, covering digital, data and technology.

■ Maintain a full product life cycle perspective, and work to balance short-term achievements with long-term goals.  Take on a Product Owner role as and where appropriate.

■ Take a hands-on approach, including commitment to direct customer interaction, support of operational engineering and customer service teams, support of BA and QA activities, and any and all product lifecycle activities.

Role Dimensions

■ Report to: Head of Digital Product Management

■ Direct report: Asset & Telemetry Manager

■ Work closely with senior sales, marketing and customer service managers; development and QA teams; CIO and development director; other product managers; operational engineering teams.

■ Budgetary responsibility: objectives include revenue and profitability targets on assigned products

■ Non-budgetary responsibility: sponsorship and coordination of telemetry capex, acting as Procurement’s key stakeholder, actively participating with OEMs and specialist providers.

■ Member of Divisional Technical Forum (engineering), Group IoT Centre of Excellence.

Requirements and Experience

■ Deep understanding of IoT / Industry 4.0 in the industrial sector or related sectors such as construction or automotive.  This includes practical understanding of machine telemetry, BIM, digital twins, management of remote and distributed assets.

■ Good understanding of B2B customers and digital opportunities, the ability to rapidly assimilate the factors relevant to the equipment rental sector and its value proposition, and the technology context required to differentiate our products in the marketplace.

■ Demonstrated ability to successfully evangelise and advocate for our products, building belief, momentum and consensus with customers and colleagues alike.  Excellent influencing skills.

■ Demonstrated ability to champion a common, customer-centric culture, and apply common methods to drive digital business success by orchestrating all relevant stakeholders to manage a continually evolving digital strategy.

■ Understanding of agile delivery, digital transformation in mature B2B enterprises, how to lead and embed product lifecycles and design thinking.

■ Establish and maintain excellent relationships with key business members, the technology team, vendors and ecosystem partners.

■ Perform data-driven, quantitative customer research by means of surveys, product analytics, market research, interviews, hackathons, online forums, or other cost-effective means of gaining insight into the “voice of the customer.” Use this insight to define the target customer segments, to understand those customers’ goals, and how they would gain value from product capabilities.

■ Perform competitive analysis on the alternatives that target customers might use, to understand what capabilities and qualities the product must have to attract customers away from those alternatives — and keep them satisfied.

■ Facilitate and drive alignment among key stakeholders, supplying customer and market research and analytics to lead them to converge on a product strategy, vision and roadmap. This includes defining a release strategy, from early prototypes, through minimum viable product (MVP), to the first and subsequent releases. This is subject to change as with any agile delivery process.

■ Work within the product budget to focus on the highest value activities: the features used most often by most customers; direct revenue growth or cost reduction; or risk mitigation.

■ Work with key stakeholders to make frequent prioritisation decisions based on the latest product analytics, product team metrics and customer feedback. Define, track and communicate key product performance indicators as required to inform this process, and track business results.

■ Work with key stakeholders to develop and refine business models for the product, using high level quantitative analysis skills, to ensure data-driven decisions.

■ Coordinate teams to ensure the product is supported by all relevant business functions. This means surfacing issues where there may be organisational or procedural gaps in delivery and support of the product.

■ Act as the keeper and communicator of the vision to translate the product strategy and vision developed with business stakeholders into what the development team must bear in mind every day to ensure they are building the right product.

■ Operate across a very broad spectrum of activities: from defining the product roadmap to writing user stories to producing sales collateral and delivering customer presentations.

■ Act as product owner where relevant to the delivery method, bearing in mind our organisation operates as a small team, including regular feedback on sprint demos and other reviewable features.  This should extend as far as regularly testing the latest daily or weekly build.

■ Collaborate and coordinate with other product managers, architects and IT management, to avoid duplication and manage dependencies; to align product and platform architectures and capabilities according to agreed goals for non-functional requirements.

■ An entrepreneurial spirit, independent and creative thinking, and leadership through collaboration, not authority.

■ Lead communications about IoT to audiences including internal colleagues (e.g., new feature releases, customer case studies), customers (e.g., pre-sales pitches, RFP responses, social media engagement, sales collateral, website content), trade associations and communities.

Further Qualifications

■ A bachelor’s or master’s degree

■ Five to seven years (or more) of relevant experience in IT and business/industry sectors which are close enough to give you an understanding and perspective on the B2B equipment rental market

■ Experience across multiple diverse roles and increasing responsibilities across business and IT

■ Demonstrable experience of engaging executives and other stakeholders to support important business decisions.

■ Demonstrable knowledge of digital product management disciplines.