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Senior Product Manager

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What Is a Senior Product Manager? How to Become One, Salary, Skills.

Senior product managers provide guidance for product managers and related operations in product development, the process of launching a new product to market or improving an existing product. Here’s what to know about a senior product manager’s needed skills, salary and how to become one.


What Is a Senior Product Manager?

Senior product managers oversee product development initiatives, and while they have similar duties to a product manager, they typically hold greater ownership and outcome responsibility over a product.


What Do Senior Product Managers Do?

Senior product managers lead product managers, create a product strategy and supervise all stages of the product development process.

Senior Product Manager Responsibilities

  • Lead product development, guide product managers and assist in high-level management tasks.
  • Develop a long-term product strategy for the product team and stakeholders to reference.
  • Identify, modify and drive development benchmarks. 
  • Coordinate product needs between clients and different teams.
  • Allocate financial resources and assign tasks to team members.

Day-to-Day Responsibilities of Senior Product Managers

  • Meet with product managers to identify and remedy development roadblocks. 
  • Track production goals and adjust development schedules accordingly.
  • Prepare and monitor product development budgets.
  • Adjust product feature requirements based on user and team member feedback.

Senior Product Managers Within a Company

Senior product managers are usually part of a product team within a company. They directly manage product managers and tend to report to a director of product management or development. 

Importance of Senior Product Managers

Senior product managers make strategic decisions that affect the progress of a product’s development and any involved teams. There would exist no overarching product guidelines or high-level communication between other teams without the help of senior product managers.

What Does a Product Manager Do All Day? | Day in the Life of a PM. | Video: Exponent


What Skills Are Needed to Be a Senior Product Manager?

Qualifications to Be a Senior Product Manager

  • Four or more years of experience in product management, product development or similar roles.
  • Ability to create and execute product strategies and strategic vision.
  • Ability to analyze markets and apply findings to development decisions.
  • Proficiency in leading and managing cross-team projects and goals.

Senior Product Manager Prerequisites

  • Bachelor’s degree in business, economics or a similar field.

Senior Product Manager Hard Skills

  • Expertise in product management and product development life cycles.
  • Understanding of product strategy development and roadmapping tools.
  • Experience with market research tools and techniques.
  • Knowledge of economics principles and workplace applications.

Senior Product Manager Soft Skills

  • Critical thinking skills.
  • Collaboration skills.
  • Leadership and ownership skills.
  • Project management best practices.
  • Verbal and written communication skills.

Tools and Programs Senior Product Managers Use

  • Asana
  • Craft.io
  • Jira 
  • Monday.com
  • Pendo
  • ProdPad
  • Productboard 
  • ProductPlan 
  • Tara
  • Trello 
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How to Become a Senior Product Manager

Senior Product Manager Education and Experience

Senior product managers typically hold a bachelor’s degree in business, economics or a similar field. Some also earn a master’s in business administration (MBA), product management or a similar field.

Senior product managers will need to obtain four or more years of experience in product management, product development or similar roles. Knowledge in the areas of effective leadership, project management, product strategy development, product roadmapping and cross-team communication are also recommended.

Senior Product Manager Certificates and Courses

Senior Product Manager Career Path

Before becoming a senior product manager, professionals will need to gain several years of experience as a product manager and/or related management roles. Professionals can then move on to be a director of product management, vice president of product or chief product officer.


Senior Product Manager Salary and Job Outlook

Senior product managers are an in-demand role, as employment for marketing managers and similar roles is set to increase 10 percent by 2031.

The full compensation package for a senior product manager depends on a variety of factors, including but not limited to the candidate’s experience and geographic location. See below for detailed information on the average senior product manager salary.


Expand Your Senior Product Manager Career Opportunities

Master coveted product management skills within your industry by taking Udemy’s online courses.


To quickly move up the product management career ladder, you'll need to master two skills: communication and leadership. This advanced course will give you step-by-step advice on how to do just that. In fact, the guidelines…


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Senior Product Manager Certifications + Programs

Propel your career to new heights with Udacity’s online product management certifications.

You’ll learn how to evaluate the business value of an AI product. You’ll start by building familiarity and fluency with common AI concepts. You’ll then learn how to scope and build a data set, train a model, and evaluate its business impact. Finally, you’ll learn how to ensure a product is successful by focusing on scalability, potential biases, and compliance. Along the way, you’ll review case studies and examples to help you focus on how to define metrics to measure the business value for a proposed product.

2 months
5-10 hours

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