CFG Career Pathways: How To Get A Career In Product Management

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The role of a Product Manager (also known as a PM) has been around since the 1930s, and since then it has become a more involved position within the technology space. PMs have the core responsibility of overseeing the planning, development and success of a product through its lifecycle. It’s a very hands-on job, ideal for anyone who likes problem-solving and organising. It’s a goal-orientated role that requires good strategy, time management and strong communication skills to achieve the success of a project which will ultimately be in your hands. 


The school of thought recently shared that great products stem from customer empathy, to which Janette Chung, Director of Product at Jobox, developed by saying that “Women product managers can add a lot of values to the field by bringing their dual qualities of empathy and analytical skills”. Meaning, that to be a great Product Manager you not only need to have good analytical skills but also have a good sense of empathy – which biologically as women, we naturally tend to have more of compared to our male counterparts. 



  1. Product strategy: This task requires a deep understanding of how the product can support the vision of the business and its overall goals. Therefore, PMs must have a deep understanding of customer needs, marketing competition and market trends to develop these strategies.

  2. Project management: Requires the ability to carry out roadmap planning, which involves creating and listing out all the steps needed to complete the goal. You must be able to prioritise tasks in a S.M.A.R.T. way – whilst often working cross-functionally with various teams in the business.

  3. Requirements gathering: The important task of working closely with key stakeholders, customers, and development teams to gather feedback and information to create specific tasks for the development teams and prioritise product requirements.

  4. Development oversight: You’ll be a key person in the project as you’ll have to collaborate with different teams and departments to ensure that project timelines are kept and product development is moving forward. It also involves making decisions such as time management, distributing resources, and trade-offs.

  5. Release management: Involves the testing and deployment of the product, a crucial part of the role of a PM! So being able to plan and coordinate product releases is important to make sure everyone is working to plan and PMs are responsible for updating relevant stakeholders in the process.


In this section, we go over some core skills essential to Product Management, so if this is a pathway you’re interested in going towards, then use this section below to rate your current skillset to discover what areas you may need to learn about or improve upon to become a PM: 

UX/UI Design

What you need to know: Having an eye for UX/UI design is a valuable skill in this role, particularly when providing feedback to teams. It ensures that products not only achieve the desired aesthetics but, more importantly, meet the functional and usability needs of the users.

Rate your current knowledge to help you understand where your skills are: 

1 – No knowledge
2 – Some knowledge
3 – I understand it
4 – Very knowledgable
5 – Knowledgeable

Analytics and Metrics

What you need to know:  Embracing metrics and analytics is an important part of this role to provide a logistical way to track key performance indicators to measure the success of a product. This relates to the next point of problem-solving. Being able to analyse data is key to converting user feedback into informed decisions that will help to improve the product.

Rate your current knowledge to help you understand where your skills are: 

1 – No knowledge
2 – Some knowledge
3 – I understand it
4 – Very knowledgable
5 – Knowledgeable


What you need to know: While problem-solving is a sought-after skill in various roles, it is crucial for Product Managers to adeptly address challenges and overcome blockers during the product development stage. Their ability to make sound decisions is key to steering the project back on track towards the desired goal.

Rate your current knowledge to help you understand where your skills are: 

1 – No knowledge
2 – Some knowledge
3 – I understand it
4 – Very knowledgable
5 – Knowledgeable

Interpersonal communication

What you need to know: As a PM, developing really good interpersonal communication is a well-desired skill to communicate with both technical and non-technical stakeholders, so communication adaptability to explain project plans and goals is essential. As well as some understanding of code to help with the process!

Rate your current knowledge to help you understand where your skills are: 

1 – No knowledge
2 – Some knowledge
3 – I understand it
4 – Very knowledgable
5 – Knowledgeable

Market Research

What you need to know: Don’t panic – but the success of the product essentially lives within your hands. Staying up to date with industry trends, competing products and new emerging technologies to utilise is super important to protect the longevity of your product. Not only that, it’ll also help with the four previous skills to continue making informed decisions.

Rate your current knowledge to help you understand where your skills are: 

1 – No knowledge
2 – Some knowledge
3 – I understand it
4 – Very knowledgable
5 – Knowledgeable


Here is an overview of titles and roles within Product Management. Remember, these can vary between organisations. 

Horizontal bar chart showing the salary ranges and career progressions for Product Managers. Ranging from £28k to £140k.


Intern / Entry-Level Product Manager Roles:
A Product Intern or Placement Student would assist the product management team with tasks such as market research, user research, data analysis, product development etc. They may be able to experience supporting the team with product launches. They may be able to shadow more senior team members and be mentored by the Junior Product Manager to help learn the development and management of products during their lifecycle. 

Junior Product Manager: 
Junior Product Managers will assist more senior Product Managers with a variety of tasks related to the project or product they are working on. Junior PMs may work more cross-functionally across teams to bridge different departments together, whilst, helping to track project progress and assign during the product launches. 

Mid-Level Roles

Product Manager
Generally responsible for a product’s overall strategy, development, and success.

Senior Product Manager
Assumes a more senior or leadership role, often overseeing a team of product managers or taking on more strategic responsibilities.

Group Production Manager
Manages a group or portfolio of related products and may oversee multiple product managers.


According to statistics taken from Glassdoor (as of 2024) the average salary ranges for these roles in the UK are

Entry-Level Positions
  • Intern or placement: 
    • For placement students in the UK this typically ranges between £18k – £25k based on company and location.
    • In the USA, Product Interns may be contracted for around $15 – $30 per hourly rate, depending on the company, industry and location.
  • Junior Product Managers: 1-2 years of experience, £28k – £39k.
Mid-Level Positions
  • Product Manager: 2-5 years of experience, £42k – £69k.
Senior-level positions
  • Senior Product Manager: 10 years of experience, £62k – £87k.
  • Director of Product Management: 10+ years of experience, £87k – £132k.
Leadership Positions
  • Head of Product Management: 10-12 years of experience, £89k – £139k.
  • Chief Technological Officer: 10-15 years of experience, £97k – £140k.

Director of Product Management
Takes on a director-level role, overseeing an organisation’s entire product management function.

VP of Product Management 
A high-level executive responsible for the overall product strategy and success, often part of the leadership team.

Product Owner
Commonly used in Agile development methodologies, the product owner represents the customer and works closely with the development team to prioritise and define features.


  • Platform Product Manager: Manages products that serve as platforms for other applications or services.

  • Data Product Manager: Focuses on products that involve data, analytics, or business intelligence, ensuring that data-driven insights contribute to product development.

  • E-commerce Product Manager: Specialising in products related to e-commerce platforms, focusing on features and strategies to improve online sales.

  • Product Marketing Manager: Focus on the marketing aspects of a product, including positioning, messaging, and go-to-market strategy.

  • Technical Product Manager: Emphasises a strong technical background and involves working closely with development teams to ensure technical feasibility and alignment with product goals.


The career development and salary of a Software Engineer can vary based on several different factors including individual goals, job locations, industries and organisation. Here’s an overview of the typical career progression for a Software Engineer:

A good way to begin your Product Management journey is with our MOOCs such as “Intro to Coding”, where you can get to know the fundamentals of code and how to communicate it. 

Once you’ve completed these you can even try our other MOOCs like:

To layer your foundational knowledge in many areas of tech.

A good understanding of web development is an ideal skill to have, to understand the basic concepts of the project you will be overseeing, and the different stages it may take to reach a certain goal. it can also help you gain an understanding of user design and user experience, to be able to communicate feedback from consumers to the team and provide helpful inputs or resolutions. 

Our Product Management stream is specially designed for women who have some existing knowledge of coding but want to specialise in this career path. You will undergo eight weeks of foundational learning with everyone in the cohort, and then spend six weeks learning about the product development process, management concepts, presenting new product launches, and much more!

Our +Masters course is a great way to top up your skills and specialise in a pathway that interests you the most in tech, or even depending on your industry and the focus of products you manage. Learn more about: 

The Mid-Level Accelerator is well suited if you’re already working in tech or a Product Manager with 2+ years of experience in your role. This course will allow you to develop T-shaped skills and increase your developer velocity, which can help you learn to become more agile as a PM and gain new techniques to boost efficiency. 


Automotive Industry:

Product Managers in the automotive industry and spearhead the development of products such as cars, electric vehicles, and more. They play a crucial role in conducting market research and defining product requirements, providing engineers with a clear direction for development. Additionally, they collaborate closely with marketing teams to plan successful product launches and gather consumer feedback for future product enhancements.

Entertainment or Media Industry:

Product Managers in the entertainment and media industry play integral roles across various domains, including streaming services like Netflix or BBC iPlayer. They oversee collaboration with tech teams, such as engineering, to enhance the user experience by developing smoother and more enjoyable content delivery mechanisms. They work closely with Data Analysts to track user feedback and behaviours and identify areas for improvement.


Product Managers serve as the driving force behind the realisation of every product, whether it’s technology-related or not. They play a pivotal role in shepherding concepts from ideation to actualisation, ensuring that innovations reach the hands of consumers. It’s particularly rewarding for individuals who relish hands-on involvement throughout the project lifecycle. Moreover, it presents ample opportunities for professional growth, allowing Product Managers to delve into diverse facets of technology and continuously evolve their careers.

Want to hear more? Check out our #REPRESENT interview with Christina Scott, Chief Product and Technology Officer of OVO, to learn more about her career development journey to become a CPTO and the tech solutions they are building at OVO to help combat climate change.