Interested in leveling up your career with a distinguished product management job?
Finding the product management dream job requires the right mindset combined with the right set of skills. But it also requires a powerful resume.
Understanding how to showcase your capabilities in your product manager resume is the first step to achieve your career goals.
Considering the versatile nature of product management, there is not a standard path you must take to become a product manager.
But not having a clear idea of what recruiters are looking for makes it difficult to understand how to structure your resume.
With that, let’s dive into the components of a product manager resume that wins job interviews.
Components of a Powerful Product Manager Resume
Every product manager resume should include at least four sections:
1. Personal information
2. Academic background
3. Relevant skills
4. Professional experience
To help you build your own champion product manager resume, I will go over each section, with examples for inspiration.
There’s no secret on the first component of your resume. Just like in any other resume, your personal information should appear on the top of the page.
You should include:
- full name
- current address
- phone number
- professional email
Example of the Personal Information Section:
The second element of your product manager resume is your academic background. Given that product management is in the corner of business strategy and engineering, many recruiters look for an educational background that is a mix between the two areas.
A bachelor’s degree in a technical field, such as software engineering, information technology, or computer science combined with an MBA is a typical product combo.
That’s because this background shows that the candidate has the ability to understand product development but also has a business perspective of the product lifecycle.
However, there are many successful product managers with entirely different backgrounds. In fact, product management is one of the fields with more variation in this aspect.
A product manager with a degree in biology, for example, might fit like a glove for biotech companies.
But if you don’t have product-specific knowledge, it’s a good idea to take a few online courses and get certifications that you can put on your resume. I recommend the certifications from Product Manager HQ. They are some of the most well-known in the product community.
I recommend learning about Agile, which is one of the most widely used methods to manage projects. You should also learn about JIRA, the most popular product management software on the market.
Product School also has comprehensive product management courses, which is an excellent option for anyone looking to enhance industry knowledge -- and resume strength.
Examples of the Academic Background Section:
This is the section where you showcase your capabilities as a product manager.
The secret here is quality over quantity. Keep in mind that recruiters won’t go over a long list of skills searching for the right ones.
To catch the recruiters’ eyes, you must list the most relevant skills for the job. The best way to do that is by looking at the job description and understanding what are the skills necessary to thrive in that specific product manager position.
You can also look at the required skills for the position and if the company asks for particular qualifications that you have, you include them on your resume.
Another important point is making sure that you are not including broad skills. For example, instead of adding “interpersonal communications” as a skill, you can add “customer-facing communication”.
This makes it more relevant for a product management position and will help your resume stand out from the other candidate’s resume.
Keep in mind that a product manager’s job description ranges from company to company. Therefore, the skills demanded to thrive in the role vary as well.
These are some of the skills found in successful product managers across a variety of industries:
- User Experience Design
- JIRA, Sketch, or Tableau
- Programming languages (HTML, CSS, JS, Python)
- B2B, B2C
- Market research and trend analysis
- Product marketing
- Strategic planning
- Product development
- Brand building
- Project management
- Staff management
- Customer-facing communications
- Operational sequence enhancement
Of course, you don’t need to have all of these skills, unless you’re applying for an executive position.
Even in this case, you shouldn’t add more than five or six product management skills on your resume.
Examples of the Skills Section:
This example below would suit a product management position with a focus on planning and management and little involvement with the engineering team, in a B2B company.
The following example is ideal for product specialists applying for a position with more emphasis on the development side of the product field.
The key in this section is to include keywords that are listed in the job description. This will show that your industry knowledge is particularly suitable for the position you are applying for.
This is the most important section of your product manager resume. This is where you prove what you can do with the skills you have.
And just like the previous section, you must make it relevant to the job you are applying for.
Include the most significant experience you have in product management, and make each bullet point count. You don’t have to include all the responsibilities you had on the job, instead, add only the ones that are meaningful to the product job you’re applying for.
The most important advice I can give you for this section is: make sure to include concrete results.
Saying “Orchestrated launch for two new products” is different than saying “Orchestrated launch for two new products and increased revenue by 18%.”
The second option not only tells that you are result-driven but also makes the recruiter want to hear more about how you accomplished that -- which means securing an interview.
These are some of the job responsibilities that product management recruiters will look for underneath your previous job titles:
- Redefined metrics to track and optimize customer onboarding experience, improving retention rate by X%
- Translated the company vision into specific solutions by orchestrating two product launches that increased revenue by X%.
- Directed planning, budgeting, vendor selection, and quality assurance efforts and improved CLV: CAC ratio.
- Defined the company’s product roadmap, both short and long term.
- Liaised with various stakeholders within the company: engineering, media-buying, data science, sales, and marketing to optimize product roadmap.
- Managed Product X inventory to optimize sales pitches and contributed to the close of over Y sales within Z months.
- Managed the entire product life cycle from prototyping, testing, design, and launch.
- Attained margins of more than X% while leading product development
- Monitored market trends and competitor performance and analyzed gaps to update promotional strategies and maximize sales.
- Mapped processes and implemented Agile product development to enhance workflows output
These bullet points should give you an idea of how to take your previous job’s responsibilities and transform them into the professional experience that will win an interview.
Examples of the Professional Experience Section:
The example above shows the resume of a person who is transitioning from marketing to product management. Notice how the bullet points are result-oriented and how even the marketing job showcases some responsibilities that would be relevant to a product manager.
Below, is an example of how an engineer transitioning into a product role can organize the tasks of a technical position in a product-oriented way.
The last instance, below, shows a product manager with a couple of years of experience and solid results in the field.
Build Your Product Manager Resume
With these resources in your hands, you’re ready to build a powerful resume that wins an interview for your product management dream job.
Remember the key is personalizing your resume for the product position that you are applying for.
By backing up your skills and experience with results, you show the recruiter that you have the capabilities to make things happen.
If you feel like you don’t have what it takes to get your dream job yet, my suggestion is: look at the requirements of the job you want and make it a checklist of the actions you need to take to get there.
Product management is an amazing field with space for professionals from many different qualification characters and levels.
So, build your resume and get ready to secure your product management job.