What’s the purpose of the products we manage?
It’s not a trick question. Their purpose is to deliver value to our customers. And we spend days, weeks, and months trying to understand what our customers value and how we can profitably deliver a solution.
Some of this is hard thinking work but much of it is hard work without much thinking needed i.e. the administration, communication, and documentation of our ideas, roadmaps, and requirements
Most of us do this using a generic office application – perhaps tracking requirements in a spreadsheet and presenting our strategy and roadmap in a slide deck.
But have you ever thought it might not the best way of doing things?
Things easily get missed. Making changes is cumbersome and collaborating is difficult. Not just that, but it’s tough to enforce a standard approach on the company – everyone makes up their own way of doing things.
However, there is a quiet revolution underway. Some software companies have been looking at what we’d value as product managers and have come up with products to help us do a better job. Their tools can help embed best practice approaches and enable product management to be more efficient and effective.
In our most recent industry survey, we investigated the tools used by product managers. We asked questions about the tools they use for 8 different product activities: product strategy, getting insight, tracking requirements, prioritization, roadmapping, creating mockups, project management, and metrics & analytics.
Unsurprisingly, the Microsoft Office suite still dominates but there is growing usage of tools designed for product managers.
The top 10, in no particular order, are:
Some tools support many product management activities whilst others have a more focused approach.
All the tools are available as SaaS on a trial basis so you can explore them for yourself.
The 2022 report from our survey of the Product Management profession lists the top 50 tools used by product managers along with The Top 10 Tools as recommended by over 1,300 product professionals.
Director, Product Focus