Friday, August 19, 2011

It's a product management kind of day

It's a beautiful Friday afternoon and I am in the land of product managers. It's really interesting that open positions seem to come in waves. There have been many times in my career where I have found myself in this situation. I have experienced it with technical trainer, business analyst, quality assurance, and many other roles. It actually makes my job more manageable; I can search for one skill set instead of three or four at a time. Also, it makes it much easier for me to present candidates to multiple opportunities, increasing my chances of placing them in that coveted J-O-B. I would be interested to hear if anyone in the job market has had a similar experience. Do you have days with lots of new jobs to apply for and other days when there is nothing?

Currently, I have 5 Product Manager positions open. 2 of these roles are contract and 3 are direct hire. A break-down is below:

#1: Product Manager; San Francisco, CA, 4 month+ contract, Online Community experience is required
#2: Product Manager; Walnut Creek, CA, 3 month+ contract (possible contract to hire), IA, User Testing & SCRUM experience is required
#3-5: Sr. Product Manager: San Francisco, CA, Direct Hire/Perm, health care and Agile experience is preferred

As always, you can contact me at or 415-678-2321.

- BG Recruiting

Tuesday, August 2, 2011

New Job - Agile Product Manager - Walnut Creek

My client is seeking an experienced Agile Product Manager to join their growing team. This is a 12 month+ contract in Walnut Creek. If you are interested, please contact Aileen @ or 415-678-2321.

The Product Manager represents the Product Owner and the End-User/Customer – they are responsible for defining and scheduling the delivery of high quality output in line with business requirements and priorities.

Key Responsibilities of the Product Manager (Scrum Meetings):

• Meet with business stakeholders to discuss, define and capture requirements – User Research
• Consider Market conditions
• Manage the Product Management documentation- Product Backlog(s), Release Plan(s), Product Roadmap(s), Release Notes and any other Requirements-level notes/sketches
• Communicate and capture requirements in a way that people can understand them e.g. Themes, Epics, User Stories, Test Cases, UI sketches, Conditions of Satisfaction etc.
• Presentation of new user stories/requirements (this may also be done by the Product Owner)
• Document feedback from the development team (e.g. viability of stories and top-level effort estimates)
• Re-prioritize, expand and more clearly define the product backlog
• Add/remove user stories and conditions of satisfaction as necessary
• Introduction of user stories and agreed conditions of satisfaction to the development team
• Document level of effort estimated to deliver each user story – use these to drive prioritization and release planning
• Present the highest priority User Stories – and suggest the proposed scope of iteration (this may be done by the Product Owner)
• Negotiate top-level Sprint scope and ensure that requirements are fully understood
• Agree Sprint Objectives with development team – this is a collaborative process
• Update release plan further to the meeting and ensure that the Product Owner (and Key Stakeholders where appropriate) are aware of the Sprint scope


• Experience writing Stories, prioritization, effectively communicating with Development team
• User Research: i.e. Experience creating User Journeys
• Understand web development
• Understand data flow
• Understand how to create structures and systems
• Experience with JIRA and/or Rally
• Experience with Balsamiq
• Team uses Mac, so that would be a plus to have
• Usability Testing is nice to have

- BG Recruiting

Wednesday, June 15, 2011

Re-entering The Job Market

I wanted to share my thoughts for those individuals who find themselves back on the job market after many years of comfortable employment.

Job searching has changed, hasn't it?

The first thing you need to know is your job search is going to be 70% Internet based. This means you are going to have to be okay with browsing multiple web pages and posting your resume electronically. Resumes are not faxed anymore, they are emailed and uploaded on websites.

Your resume should be posted on, and (also, if you are an IT Professional). This not only means uploading your resume, but logging in every other week to update it in their system. Unless, you have a crazy manager who monitors all of these sites, do not list yourself as confidential. This makes it more difficult for potential employers to contact you. Some may even skip your resume, simply because it is listed as confidential. If you are nervous about sharing too much personal information, omit your address. It is acceptable to just have your city and state listed. You can also list your current employer as "confidential". But remember, listing your email and phone number are important. You want to make it easy for hiring managers and recruiters to contact you.

Now, don't forget about searching for jobs. A great site for searching for open positions is This site lists all of the open positions listed by the job search sites I previously mentioned. The only drawback of this site is it may have older jobs listed that have already been filled. That's okay, you are going to apply for a lot of positions anyway. Job searching is definitely a numbers game. Do not be over-analytical. If you have 80% of what they are looking for, go ahead and apply. It's possible that you have some experience not listed on the job description that they need. Or the other 20% of requirements aren't really needed. The worst thing that could happen is they wont call you.

- BG Recruiting