Product Lead

c. £63,000 plus excellent benefits
This is a full-time role but we offer a range of flexible working arrangements and encourage our people to take advantage of them.
Blackfriars, London – hybrid working

We are recruiting for a Product Lead

About Nesta
We are Nesta, the UK’s innovation agency for social good. We design, test and scale solutions to society’s biggest problems. Our three missions are to give every child a fair start, help people live healthy lives, and create a sustainable future where the economy works for both people and the planet.

For over 20 years, we have worked to support, encourage and inspire innovation. We work in three roles: as an innovation partner working with frontline organisations to design and test new solutions, as a venture builder supporting new and early stage businesses, and as a system shaper creating the conditions for innovation.

Harnessing the rigour of science and the creativity of design, we work relentlessly to change millions of lives for the better. Find out more at nesta.org.uk

How will a Product Lead contribute to Nesta’s success?
As a Product Lead you will oversee and support the successful rapid prototyping, development, and delivery/maintenance of a portfolio of digital tools and products from across the Nesta group. You will guide multidisciplinary teams and manage digital products through the product development process and lifecycle (particularly the early stages), and play a key role in managing iterative and rapid software delivery. This role will suit someone familiar with software development who has successfully developed digital products from concept through to a being working software that is valued by the people who use it. The ideal candidate would be someone who is comfortable undertaking hands-on work to simply and quickly test assumptions and develop valuable early stage products that can be spun out or scaled.

The role

• Oversee and support the successful rapid prototyping, development, and delivery/maintenance of a portfolio of digital tools and products from across the Nesta group.
• Be part of and support multidisciplinary teams to undertake product discovery, providing hands-on skills to simply and quickly prototype and deliver minimum viable products to test assumptions and demonstrate value, before helping to scale or spin them out.
• Guide and work with multidisciplinary teams made up of disciplines and functions from across the Nesta group (e.g. comms, data, design, engineering, missions, etc) through the digital product development process, providing expert hands-on support throughout and helping teams to establish or adopt common routines and processes for releasing working software quickly and often.
• Uncover and understand user and stakeholder needs and translate them into requirements, including helping to turn them into realistic and concrete plans and tasks prioritised into an iterative release plan that fits with the strategic roadmap for the product and team capacity and capabilities.
• Ensuring requirements are fully understood by product teams (including developers/engineers) and their stakeholders, and that implementation plans match expectations, including helping to define and evaluate against success criteria for testing and product acceptance.
• Help product teams and developers/engineers within them adapt their plans and tasks in response to new learning or requirements.
• Ensure the software we develop meets the needs of users and stakeholders, as well as having the desired business and social impact by supporting teams to undertake iterative software development and testing.
• Ensure software we develop has a strategy and resourcing for ongoing delivery/maintenance as it grows or remains live, as well as a plan for retirement and embedding org-wide processes around this.
• Ensure the shared and consistent use of lean-agile principles (more than a particular methodology or framework), particularly ensuring we are releasing the smallest and simplest working software quickly and often, in order to learn, deliver value and continually improve/iterate.
• Encourage developing the smallest and simplest thing to give us confidence to move forward and test our assumptions, by providing hands-on support and skills to develop low/no code prototypes, undertake user research or reuse existing/open tech.
• Facilitate collaboration across disciplines within multidisciplinary teams and with key stakeholders, helping to resolve any roadblocks to team performance where appropriate.
• Facilitate the creation and maintenance of proper product and software documentation.
• Help cultivate a pipeline of impactful and valuable digital products or projects to meet the goals of the Nesta group and maximise our internal design, engineering and product capabilities.
• Line manage technologists.

The person

Essential

• Product development & prototyping: Experience developing digital products across the product lifecycle and guiding multidisciplinary teams through a user-centred and test-driven product development process to quickly and often release the smallest and simplest working software in order to learn, deliver value and continually improve/iterate. You have hands-on skills and experience of simply and quickly prototyping and delivering minimum viable products, and are comfortable doing so yourself and supporting others to do this.
• Operational and project management: Experience helping multidisciplinary teams adopt and establish routines and processes for releasing working software quickly and often. You can help teams build shared understanding of user and stakeholder needs and translate them into requirements, including helping to turn them into realistic and concrete plans and tasks prioritised into an iterative release plan that fits with the strategic roadmap for the product, team capacity and operational constraints.
• Portfolio management: You have experience managing or supporting a portfolio of digital products, tools or initiatives, ideally at different stages of maturity. You can manage products across their life cycle, from helping to cultivate new digital product opportunities through to ensuring they have a strategy and resourcing for ongoing delivery/maintenance as they grow or remain alive, as well as a plan for retirement.
• Iterative development and testing: You have experience of applying and helping teams adopt lean-agile principles, particularly releasing the smallest and simplest working software quickly and often, in order to learn, deliver value and continually improve/iterate. You can provide hands-on support and skills (like developing low/no code prototypes and undertaking user research) to deliver the smallest and simplest thing to give us confidence to move forward and test our assumptions.
• User focus: You have experience supporting multidisciplinary teams to develop digital products that meet the needs of users and stakeholders, as well as having the desired business and/or social impact; including helping them to uncover and understand user and stakeholder needs through user research and testing.
• Communication and collaboration: You have experience presenting and building shared understanding of technical concepts and digital product development practices to non-technical audiences and can effectively facilitate collaboration across disciplines (technical and non-technical), helping to resolve any roadblocks to team performance where appropriate. You can ensure requirements are fully understood by product teams (including developers/engineers) and their stakeholders, and that implementation plans match expectations, including helping to define and evaluate against success criteria for testing and product acceptance.
• Line management: You have experience line managing and coaching others, including software developers/technologists.

Desirable

• You are comfortable developing prototypes by writing code yourself or using no/low code tools.
• You are familiar with design disciplines (like UX design and service design) and are able to apply some of the mindsets and tools.
• You have experience developing digital products with a social impact focus.

What we offer
Salary: circa £63,000 plus array of benefits, including health cash plans, dental insurance, the ability to buy and sell annual leave, eyecare vouchers and more
Location: Blackfriars, Central London – hybrid working arrangement, with a minimum of two days working from the office.
Term: Permanent
Hours: This is a full-time role but we offer a range of flexible working arrangements and encourage our people to take advantage of them. Many do.
Reports to: Director of Design & Technology

Making an application
To apply for this role, please submit your application before 8.00am on Monday 26th Feb 2024.

Round 1 interviews are expected to take place on w/o 4th Mar 2024, and Round 2 interviews (including a presentation) on w/o 18th Mar 2024.

At Nesta, we believe that a diverse workforce leads to an organisation that is more innovative, more creative and gets better results.

We want our workforce to represent the diversity of the people and communities we serve. We also want our workplace to be one where different experiences, expertise and perspectives are valued, and where everyone is encouraged to grow and develop.

This means that when we are recruiting, we actively seek to reach a diverse pool of candidates. It also means that we are happy to consider any reasonable adjustments that potential employees may need to in order to be successful.

We recognise the importance of a good balance between work and home life, so we do everything we can to accommodate flexible working, including working from home, compressed or part-time hours, job shares and other arrangements.

Please just let us know in your application or at any stage throughout the process (and beyond) if these are options you’d like to explore.

 

To apply for this job please visit www.nesta.org.uk.