Lead Product Strategist (Design Research)
Ovyl is a product development firm working on an exciting range of consumer electronics, lifestyle products, and medical devices. We're currently expanding our team in Nashville, Tennessee and are looking for our next Lead Product Strategist.
As a Lead Product Strategist, you’re not just an accomplished professional who ensures products solve user needs—you’ve reached the point of your career where you’ve been instrumental on teams solving a wide range of complex and challenging problems. You know that great products are born at the intersection of business priority, user need, and technical constraints, and love the process of creating harmony across all three. You have a knack for rooting out unverified assumptions and designing the perfect research study or experiment to set the record straight. You can’t imagine designing a product without talking to end users, and will roll up your sleeves to make sure the research is done right. You pride yourself on being a good question-asker which allows you to refine vague instructions until you have a clear direction. You probably even keep up with User Research and Product Strategy trends in your spare time. To you, making things that solve real problems is the most fun you could have at work, and that’s why you are reading this now.
In this role, you will
- Own the research approach for complex products from the initial, exploratory conversations with clients through the execution of multi-phased product development where different types of user insights are needed at different times.
- Work with the Project Manager to break down project objectives into clear, actionable steps and provide realistic effort estimates.
- Guide the project team through gathering, unpacking, and prioritizing end-user questions and assumptions, and then create a research plan that systematically answers the riskiest unknowns.
- Conduct primary and secondary research using a variety of methods—using the right tool for the right set of questions—and then communicate user insights and product recommendations through compelling presentations.
- Design and facilitate collaborative workshops with clients that capture their business goals, draw out constructive feedback on our work, and align senior stakeholders.
- Translate research findings into detailed product requirements that guide the product development process and maintain those requirements over the course of the project.
- Ensure that the product balances business, user, and technological constraints, sometimes requiring you to guide the client towards a different direction than what they thought they needed.
- Coach and mentor other strategists, including ones who are not on your projects, fostering growth and upholding research quality across the shop.
- Work closely with the Head of Strategy to help Ovyl evolve and grow the Product Strategy practice.
- 7+ years of professional product strategy/design research experience
- Expert at leading teams through the messy, early stages of product discovery, where you need to pull clear, actionable insights from qualitative data.
- Demonstrated expertise in several research methods, including end-user interviews, usability testing, in-context observation, survey design, competitive analysis, and journey mapping.
- Excel at designing and facilitating client workshops, with a demonstrated ability to engage participants, drive discussions, and achieve desired outcomes.
- Experience in developing physical products with manufactured components (vs. only software)
- Feel at home in a highly technical environment where you will collaborate with Mechanical Engineers, Electrical Engineers, Firmware Developers, etc.
- Prior experience in a client-facing role, with the confidence to advise senior stakeholders and push back when necessary.
- Outstanding presentation and communication skills, capable of championing the value of research when speaking to a skeptical audience.
- Previous roles might include Product Strategist, UX Researcher, Product Manager, Innovation Strategist, Design Researcher, Design Strategist, Product Designer, Service Designer, or similar.
- Must live in the Nashville, TN area or be willing to relocate. You must be able to work on-site when needed, but once you’re settled in, you can be flexible with when and where you work, provided you can attend important meetings or prototype testing in person.
Compensation, Benefits, & Perks
All full-time employees at Ovyl get the following benefits:
- Health Insurance: Ovyl covers 100% of your health insurance premium. You pay the difference for a spouse and/or dependents.
- Dental, Vision, HSA: Ovyl offers these plans but does not contribute to their premiums.
- 401k + 3%: Ovyl contributes 3% no matter what (it’s guaranteed, not a match). By default, you contribute an additional 6%, which you can change.
- Quarterly bonuses: Our success is your success. Every quarter, we set aside a portion of Ovyl’s bottom line to distribute to every team member proportionally to their salary.
- Flexible schedules & WFH: While the expectation is a full-time commitment (40h/wk), and there will be some required time in the studio, you’ll get to enjoy a lot of flexibility on when and where you work. Want to work from home 2 days a week? Do it. Is it too perfect to be inside on a Tuesday? Work Saturday instead.
- Unlimited paid time off: We’re not counting vacation days and sick days, we’re just looking at your work. We strongly encourage a minimum of two weeks vacation plus sick and personal days but if you’re meeting deadlines, keeping projects on track, and making clients happy, we’re flexible on everything else.
- Company events: We take an afternoon off work a few times a year to have fun, hang out, and get to know each other.
- Maker Stipend: We want to employ people who freaking love to make stuff, so we’ll reimburse up to $600/year for any personal project spending. Put it toward building a new headboard for your bed, buying a really nice hot glue gun, or getting an Arduino kit and figuring out how to automate your herb garden.
- Learning Stipend: We also want to employ people who love learning, so we also reimburse up to $120/year for any educational resources. You can put it towards audiobooks, online courses, workshops, or events, to name a few.
- Access to 3D printers for personal use: If the printers aren’t needed for a project, have at ‘em.
- Stocked fridge and snacks: We’ll stay stocked up on healthy snacks, carbonated water, coffee, tea, and beer.
- Join Nashville’s best product development firm: You’ll get to learn new skills working alongside a great team on a wide variety of products, from medical devices that save lives to consumer products that light up a Kickstarter campaign.
To be considered for a position, applicants should upload a cover letter, resume, and portfolio with their application.