Product Owner (Remote) at NWEA (Portland, OR)

| Portland, OR
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Product Owner (Remote)
This role is 100% remote with US-Pacific time zone working hours

Position summary

The Product Owner we're looking to hire will be helping to continue the transformation of NWEA into a cloud-first, microservices-based development environment with solid DevSecOps practices and robust security and data quality management. You'll be working with an amazing team of high-performing Product Owners helping to support our industry-leading products and helping to accelerate the delivery of innovation across the enterprise. You should be a confident leader who can bring order to chaos and anticipate customer needs while balancing the needs of the business. You will work directly with team members and department leaders and be responsible for quality software delivery from exploration to release. You'll ensure the consistent application of industry best practices, methodologies, and standards, and monitor the quality of deliverables and outputs produced by your team and cross-dependent teams to ensure they meet organization expectations and are fit-for-purpose. You'll foster inclusivity and strive to make DEIA practices the center of our work while Partnering to Help All Kids Learn. You'll be a driver of process improvement and growing the maturity of our internal processes, tools, and techniques as they pertain to the software development lifecycle. This role leads our content supply chain team in optimizing test and item creation and solidifies the roadmap for this team.

  • Fulfill the role of a Product Owner (different than a Product Manager) within a Scaled Agile Framework on all sizes of initiatives.
  • Lead and facilitate the work of Agile teams (including ceremonies) by working with stakeholders to clarify epic delivery objectives and ensure the cross-functional Agile team members can accomplish these objectives.
  • Create Program Increment, Sprint, and Release plans; ensure that plans receive an appropriate review, authorization, and visibility through Agile ceremonies and stakeholder communication.
  • Ownership and strong stewardship of agile team(s) backlog, story definitions, and refinement; including rank order across competing priorities (roadmap, maintenance, and defects, etc)
  • Be an advocate and voice across the enterprise for agile development team(s).
  • Assist teams in evaluating and establishing their capacity to inform project plans.
  • Track project/team interdependencies and coordinate efforts across disparate teams with other Product Owners or stakeholders. Managing expectations and coordinating deliverables across teams is key in this role.
  • Timely approval of stories to ensure quality control at the team level and to ensure technical and functional integrity of our products.
  • Track and forecast project progress, activity, and effort; communicate effectively through multiple channels to sponsors and key stakeholders.
  • Continuous and early assessment of project risk factors and recommendation of courses of action to mitigate risk.
  • Participate in developing, maintaining, and evolving standards, tools, templates, and documented processes for process improvement and project governance.
  • Perform other duties as assigned to ensure the success of the team and the organization.

Skills and abilities
  • Experience in scrum and/or Kanban processes and protocols, a must; proven foundational knowledge of standard project management best practices, a must.
  • Experience with the Scaled Agile Framework is desired.
  • Strong leadership skills with proven ability to successfully manage and facilitate functional and/or cross-functional teams; ability to build working relationships and work effectively with most levels of an organization.
  • Well-developed communication skills, including proven ability to transform complexities into clear, concise written communications for stakeholders and development teams.
  • Ability to distinguish milestones and measures critical to project success and translate these into meaningful management information.
  • Ability to balance competing demands for project scope, time, cost, risk, and quality; combined with the ability to manage several projects concurrently with a sense for organizational priority.
  • Ability to remain cool under pressure and demonstrate competence when challenged.
  • Experience in successfully, respectfully, and logically negotiating with stakeholders.
  • Ability to facilitate and control meetings and discussions where disparate points of view need to be voiced and acknowledged.
  • Ability to track at the detail level and some experience strategizing for product vision and planning several steps ahead.
  • Proficiency in a broad range of agile project management and roadmap tools such as Jira, Target Process, and Aha.
  • Must be able to perform the physical and intellectual requirements of the role, with or without accommodation.

  • Instill trust: gain the confidence and trust of others through honesty, integrity, and authenticity
  • Communicate effectively: develop and deliver multi-mode communications that convey a clear understanding of the unique needs of different audiences
  • Customer focus: build strong customer relationships and deliver customer-centric solutions
  • Drive results: consistently achieve results, even under tough circumstances

Education and experience
  • Bachelor's degree in Business, Engineering, or similar discipline required; MBA or other advanced degree or equivalent work experience preferred.
  • Minimum three years of practical delivery experience in the area of Agile project management with demonstrated results leading an agile team.
  • Strong preference for experience in the technology industry.
  • Project management process experience including project prioritization, estimating, project planning, scheduling, risk and issue management.
  • Experience in vendor relations and contract negotiations for program/project outsourced services and products desired.
  • Scrum Certified Product Owner desired; experience with creation of project portfolio management tools and design of dynamic, data-driven web applications highly desirable.

About Us

NWEA® is a research-based, not-for-profit organization that supports students and educators worldwide by creating assessment solutions that precisely measure growth and proficiency-and provide timely data to help tailor instruction. For more than 40 years, NWEA has developed innovative pre-K-12 assessments, including our flagship interim assessment, MAP® Growth™; our progress monitoring and skills mastery tool, MAP® Skills™; and our reading fluency and comprehension assessment, MAP® Reading Fluency™. Educators trust our professional learning offerings to accelerate student learning and our research to support assessment validity and data interpretation. More than 11 million students in 146 countries use our solutions to support their learning and growth each year.

What we can offer you

At NWEA we not only offer a competitive base salary, we offer a 15% contribution of eligible employees' base salary to a defined contribution 403(b) retirement savings plan; career development opportunities; an awesome work culture and environment; we also offer industry leading benefits and perks that are focused on supporting our employees' holistic wellbeing. To learn more about what we can offer more, click here.

NWEA strives to make diversity, equity, inclusion, and accessibility (DEIA) practices the center of our work. Our organization's mission, Partnering to Help All Kids Learn, is the foundation for our DEIA commitment as we work to reflect, value, and support the educators, students, colleagues, and communities we serve. We seek to empower and engage all stakeholders in the research, services, solutions, and products we provide, our organizational culture, and the partnerships we establish with schools, districts, states, and countries.

NWEA™ endeavors to make accessible to all users. If you would like to contact us regarding the accessibility of our website or need assistance completing the application process, please call us at (503) 624-1951 or e-mail us at [email protected] and let us know the nature of your request, your location and your contact information. This is for accommodation requests only and cannot be used to inquire about the status of applications.

NWEA™ is an equal opportunity employer. Qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, religion, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, national origin, disability or protected veteran status. For our EEO Policy Statement, please visit our website.

If you'd like more information on your EEO rights under the law, please visit the EEOC website
More Information on NWEA
NWEA operates in the Edtech industry. The company is located in Portland, OR. NWEA was founded in 1977. It has 930 total employees. It offers perks and benefits such as Flexible Spending Account (FSA), Disability Insurance, Dental Benefits, Vision Benefits, Health Insurance Benefits and Life Insurance. To see all 1 open jobs at NWEA, click here.
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