Product Strategist - New College Grad

| Palo Alto, CA, USA +80 more | Remote
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Vannevar Labs builds next generation defense software for the public servants keeping our country safe.  As a team, we exist because we believe in public service, and we think that our democracy and government improve only if we put serious, collective effort into improving them, including the technology our government uses.   


This mission has become urgent. Ukraine is engaged in a war for survival with Russia. China regularly flies nuclear-capable bombers into Taiwan and Japan’s airspace. The US and our allies are fighting a war of deterrence with woefully outdated technology. We build software to support these missions, including providing battlefield information to allies, identifying malign activity, and helping the US deter and deescalate conflict.  


We are a profitable growth startup with some of the best defense investors in the world, including General Catalyst, DFJ Growth, Point72, and enterprise tech investors Costanoa and Felicis. 

About the role

We are hiring Product Strategists (2024 grads) at Vannevar build 0 to 1 products to help us enter and scale in new mission areas. This is a multi-faceted and extremely externally oriented role - the day-to-day will include some combination 1) spending a ton of time on military bases with users to understand the problem, 2) working in partnership with engineering to quickly iterate on product hypotheses, and 3) working with our Mission to sell the product you're developing. You will be functioning basically as a mini-startup CEO within Vannevar.


Over the last 24 months, we went from $3M to $46M on 3 products all aligned against competition in Europe and Asia, and we have more missions that we want to develop new products against. Your role is absolutely critical in building impactful products for the mission and driving growth for Vannevar.


The ideal candidate has interned in defense or intelligence before and has touched software product management and / or customer deployments of software products before. 

What you'll do
  • Prototype and iterate on a software product to expand Vannevar into an adjacent mission area to where we're currently operating.
  • Become an expert in this mission area by spending a bunch of time on military bases embedded with users and by shipping many rough v0 prototypes as quickly as possible to learn.
  • Work with a small but mighty 1-3 person eng team to quickly test product hypotheses in this area.
  • Partner with the mission development team to sell / try to sell versions of your product as you are iterating. Enabling growth is a key component of this role.
Things to know about 0 to 1 product at Vannevar
  • We build from the mission backwards. Every product bet we make is informed by a deep understanding of a particular mission that we develop by spending a lot of time on military bases.
  • We know our initial thesis will almost always be wrong. Because of this, we ship hacky things quickly to learn and minimize the amount of time we're on the wrong path.
  • At Vannevar, product is a growth-oriented function. We have growth goals and try to orient ourselves as externally as possible.
  • We get the best 0 to 1 product outcomes when we combine eng creativity + product creativity + mission understanding. Because of this, our job is to empower eng to make the best decisions on what they are building. This means going on base with eng so they have the mission context, and means being loose and light on requirements documents.

What we're looking for

  • Degree in International Relations or Foreign Affairs or equivalent  
  • Experience as a product manager or experience working with users on DoD software product deployments
  • U.S. Person status is required with the ability to obtain security clearance.

What we offer

  • Health, dental, and vision insurance
  • 100% remote - work from anywhere in the US
  • 401k matching
  • Mental benefits
  • Flexible work environment - you manage your workday
  • Pet and child care reimbursement during travel
  • Unlimited PTO

Vannevar Labs is an equal opportunity employer, and qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, religion, sex, sexual orientation, gender perception or identity, national origin, age, marital status, protected veteran status, or disability status.


We encourage candidates from all backgrounds to apply, even if you don't feel like you're a perfect fit. If you're passionate about contributing to our mission, we'd love to hear from you!


We are committed to protecting the privacy of all applicants. Official emails from the company will come from an domain. Under no circumstances will a legitimate representative from our company contact you to request passwords, financial information, or other sensitive personal data. Please be vigilant of potential scams.

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Technology we use

  • Engineering
    • JavascriptLanguages
    • PythonLanguages
    • SqlLanguages
    • TypeScriptLanguages
    • ReactLibraries
    • DjangoFrameworks
    • DockerFrameworks
    • GraphQLFrameworks
    • JupyterFrameworks
    • KubernetesFrameworks
    • Node.jsFrameworks
    • TerraformFrameworks
    • ElasticsearchDatabases
    • PostgreSQLDatabases
    • AWS (Amazon Web Services)Services
    • GitHubServices

An Insider's view of Vannevar Labs

How would you describe the company’s work-life balance?

I think having a good work-life balance is something that everyone really respects here. I can take an hour or two off for an appointment, and everyone trusts me to get my own work done or re-communicate changes in expectations. We don't police each other to get work done: I see it in everyone, from my teammates to the CEO.


Software Engineering Manager

How do you collaborate with other teams in the company?

I collaborate across the company by maintaining open communication, aligning my goals with the best interest of the company, and leading every interaction with respect. At VL we value having a low ego and with that comes the ability to work together to create the best possible outcome.


People Operations Specialist

How do you make yourself accessible to the rest of the team?

Every week we hold engineering office hours. Anyone can add agenda items to help the team stay abreast of what's going on at the company. This allows everyone to ask questions and provide feedback on things large and small happening across the company. It's important that we operate transparently because we only make progress if we act together.



What are some social events your company does?

We try to do team quarterly off-sites and a company wide yearly offsite. At these off-sites, we've done everything from axe throwing to cooking classes to outdoor obstacle courses. I'm personally most excited for our big company paintball competition!


Business Operations

What are Vannevar Labs Perks + Benefits

Vannevar Labs Benefits Overview

For many of us, the best part of working at Vannevar Labs is the people. We've cultivated a team of people who are extremely good at what they do, low-ego, and passionate about their work. Besides this, we also cover a number of benefits, from health/dental/vision insurance, to generous 401k matching, to an extensive paid holiday schedule.

Open door policy
OKR operational model
Team based strategic planning
Pair programming
Health Insurance + Wellness
Dental insurance
Vision insurance
Health insurance
Life insurance
Mental health benefits
Financial & Retirement
401(K) matching
Company equity
Employee stock purchase plan
Child Care & Parental Leave
Generous parental leave
Vacation + Time Off
Unlimited vacation policy
Generous PTO
Paid holidays
Office Perks
Commuter benefits
Company-sponsored outings
Home-office stipend for remote employees
Professional Development
Promote from within
Customized development tracks

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