A Product Development Manager, also known as a PDM, is an expert, often in software engineering or UX design or both, tasked with designing, developing, and improving new products and services that can be sold to the public and other companies and organizations.
They must be able to do market and technological research, develop proposals, supervise the design and development projects and processes, cooperate and collaborate with specialists and employees working in other parts of the company, and often must present and explain the product to investors, higher management, and customers alike.
Generally, a person hoping to begin working as a Product Development Manager must have at least a Bachelor's in Industrial Design, Engineering, or a similar field of study, along with some experience in similar and related positions, and a good understanding and proficiency in prototype and design software and platforms, such as 3D printers and Autodesk.
Depending on the level of the positions, further education, experience, and specialties may be necessary.
There is more than meets the eye when it comes to being a product development manager. For example, did you know that they make an average of $48.99 an hour? That's $101,889 a year!
Between 2018 and 2028, the career is expected to grow 8% and produce 21,800 job opportunities across the U.S.
There are certain skills that many product development managers have in order to accomplish their responsibilities. By taking a look through resumes, we were able to narrow down the most common skills for a person in this position. We discovered that a lot of resumes listed detail oriented, math skills and analytical skills.
When it comes to the most important skills required to be a product development manager, we found that a lot of resumes listed 10.7% of product development managers included product development, while 10.3% of resumes included project management, and 5.7% of resumes included product management. Hard skills like these are helpful to have when it comes to performing essential job responsibilities.
When it comes to searching for a job, many search for a key term or phrase. Instead, it might be more helpful to search by industry, as you might be missing jobs that you never thought about in industries that you didn't even think offered positions related to the product development manager job title. But what industry to start with? Most product development managers actually find jobs in the retail and technology industries.
If you're interested in becoming a product development manager, one of the first things to consider is how much education you need. We've determined that 68.1% of product development managers have a bachelor's degree. In terms of higher education levels, we found that 13.0% of product development managers have master's degrees. Even though most product development managers have a college degree, it's possible to become one with only a high school degree or GED.
Choosing the right major is always an important step when researching how to become a product development manager. When we researched the most common majors for a product development manager, we found that they most commonly earn bachelor's degree degrees or master's degree degrees. Other degrees that we often see on product development manager resumes include associate degree degrees or doctoral degree degrees.
You may find that experience in other jobs will help you become a product development manager. In fact, many product development manager jobs require experience in a role such as product manager. Meanwhile, many product development managers also have previous career experience in roles such as project manager or production manager.