Product Owner II

Job Description

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Join a team of diverse professionals at Farmers to acquire skills on the job and apply your learned knowledge to future roles at Farmers. Farmers Insurance also offers extensive training opportunities through the award winning University of Farmers named by Training magazine amongst top 10 corporate training units in the world.

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Job Summary  
Takes the lead more independently in areas of product development by following the principles of Agile to manage the team backlog, anticipate and prioritize needs, oversee development stages, act as a primary liaison and evaluate product progress. Serves as the customer proxy; works collaboratively with business owners and other stakeholders to accomplish these tasks with little to no support and with a higher volume of work. Utilizes strong understanding of the business vision to offer guidance and influence the business owner's requirements. May provide overall leadership to Product Owner team through mentorship and guidance. 
Essential Job Functions   
  • Applies scientific practice within iterations in order to routinely plan, do, check and adjust.
  • Manages team backlog items and prioritizes based on business value.
  • Outlines dependencies and informs stakeholders the necessary sequence of development to ensure optimized performance and outcomes.
  • Holds a significant role in quality control and is the primary team member empowered to accept stories as done.
  • Utilizes strong business knowledge, influence and communication skills to anticipate problems, address them accordingly while working cross functionally in a self-organizing manner to accomplish tasks and effectively manage the backlog.
  • Effectively applies critical thinking to identify flexibility in determining how and when each iteration and product element will be developed.
  • Acts as primary communicator and connection between stakeholders, end users and teams determining if each story meets their shared expectations.
  • Mutually partners with the business and uses effective challenging techniques in order to influence decisions.
  • Ensures collaboration from all stakeholders on decisions and strategy providing clear instructions and deliverables for developers.
  • Takes ownership for each stage of the process and final product to ensure the goal and vision are correctly aligned with the work items on the backlog.
  • Contributes input into the prioritization of the program backlog, coordinates dependencies and manages the inspection and evaluation of product progress through each iteration.
  • Assists in the mitigation of program risks.
  • Participates in PO and/or ART sync meetings in addition to the system demo to show critical aspects of the solution,
  • Participates in Inspect Adapt workshop to work across teams to define and implement improvement stories to increase program quality.
  • A key member of the Agile team who utilizes perspective to define iteration goals and drives execution and delivery with the ability to influence stakeholders.
  • Partners with the business owner to understand needs, manage scope and add/eliminate user stories.
  • Communicates requirements to Agile Team in a clear and collaborative manner to determine new requirements, negotiate teams and dependencies.
  • Regularly interacts with the Product Manager in order to discuss goals and share a clear understanding of the business/value stream vision.
  • Heavily involved in the Program Increment (PI) planning, story definition and assists team with story estimates and sequencing.
  • Oversees the development of the product to include planning, refinement, review, and execution.
  • Partners with stakeholders to identify and organize steps required for next iteration.
  • Works to gain clarity on queries and participate in the demo of committed items.
  • Participates in ceremonies within the team to coordinate efforts with team to refine the process, identify areas for improvement and support the execution of tasks.
  • Continuously keeps the end-user needs in mind based on higher level of business acumen.
  • Ensures the solution meets expectations and the development delivers expected outcomes from the accepted stories.
  • Provides mentorship and guidance to PO I.
  • Performs other duties as assigned. 
Physical Actions   
Physical Environment: The following are standard requirements for all positions. When applicable, some positions may have additional requirements essential to a specific job. This position operates in an open office working environment which will include normal and customary distractions, noise, and interruptions. Sits or stands for extended periods of time, up to a full work shift. Occasionally reaches overhead and below the knees, including bending, twisting, pulling, and stooping. Occasionally moves, lifts, carries, and places objects and supplies weighing 0-10 pounds without assistance. Listens to, interprets, and differentiates auditory information (e.g. others speaking) at normal speaking levels with or without correction. Visually verifies and reads information. Visually locates material, resources and other objects. Ability to operate a computer for extended periods of time, up to a full work shift. Physical dexterity sufficient to use hands, arms, and shoulders repetitively to operate keyboard and other office equipment up to a full work shift.  
Education Requirements: Bachelor's degree preferred. Product Owner, Scrum Master, or Product Manager Certified (obtained within 180 days of hire) required.  
Experience Requirements: 1-3 years experience in an Agile environment or 3-5 years in a project environment required. 1-3 years leadership experience preferred. 
Special Skill Requirement   
  • Possesses strong product knowledge.
  • Possesses strong business and functional knowledge in the supported value stream based on prior experience.
  • Possesses flexibility to work in a fast paced, dynamic environment.
  • Ability to react quickly to change in direction.
  • Demonstrated written communication skills.
  • Ability to effectively write user stories and break down features into user stories.
  • Builds and manages effective teams.
  • Ability to handle multiple agile teams as needed.
  • Performs work independently with minimal supervision.
  • Strong verbal communication and listening skills.
  • Excellent organizational skills.
  • Develops and delivers effective presentations. 
Farmers is an equal opportunity employer, committed to the strength of a diverse workforce. 
Schedule: Full-time

Job Posting: 01/28/2020