Who Is The Product Owner In The Agile Process

In this article, we will discuss the basic concept of Scrum, the Product Owner. Also, we will discuss the roles and responsibilities of a Product Owner in Scrum or Agile Process.

Currently, Agile Process Methodology is one of the most used methodologies in different industries. In this methodology, one of the most popular process frameworks is the Scrum Process Framework. We have already discussed the benefits of the Agile Process and also, about the role of a Scrum Master in the Agile Process in the previous articles. If you want to read that discussion, then here are the links of those articles,
As per the Scrum Process Framework, Scrum Teams consist of a Product Owner, the Development Team and a Scrum Master. Scrum Teams are always a self-organizing and cross-functional team. So, in this article, we will discuss the Product Owner’s roles and responsibilities.
 

Who Is The Product Owner?

 
As per the Scrum Guideline, the Product Owner is normally a single person who is mainly responsible for maximizing the product value and the work of the development team. In the Agile process, a product owner can be performing many roles like a business strategist, product designer, customer communication person, market analysis and project manager, etc. Generally, the Product Owner can perform the lead role in many areas of the product development concept. On the one hand, the Product Owner needs to analyze the current requirement or condition of the market and according to that plan strategize the product release strategies and represent those in front of the stakeholders or customers so that they can clearly understand the product development and release plan. On the other hand, the Product Owner needs to explain the requirements of the stakeholders and also needs to explain what needs to developed by the Development team. 
 
 Who Is Product Owner In Agile Process
 

Product Owner Responsibilities to the Stakeholders

 
In the Agile Scrum Process, the Product Owner is known as the voice of the customer. The Product Owner is either a Project Manager or a Business Analyst who has a complete vision about the product and also know how the product must behave. The product owner must collaborate with the stakeholders or customers of the product to understand their requirement and vision along with current market requirements. Also, the Product Owner needs to regularly update the stakeholders about the progress of the product developments.
 
Except for this responsibility, the Product Owner also needs to perform the below responsibilities,
  1. Create the Product’s vision if it does not exist.
  2. Create and manage the Product Backlog items to fulfill the product visions
  3. Reviews the product with the stakeholders in the Sprint Review Meeting to provide feedback on the sprint wise development tasks
  4. Update the stakeholders about the progress of the product development in every sprint
  5. Represent the stakeholder in front of the Development Team.
  6. Prioritize the Product Backlog item on the basis of the requirements as per the requirements received from the stakeholders
  7. Provide the proper sequence order of the Product Backlog item to maximize the product value delivery. 

Responsibility Towards The Development Team

 
The Product Owner is responsible for helping the development team in the following areas,
  1. Need to provide a shared vision between the stakeholders and the development team
  2. Need to provide the details of the product backlog item to the development team. So, the high-value item can be taken in the upcoming sprint.
  3. Help the development team to provide an estimate by clarified any doubts or question related to the Product Backlog Item.
  4. Always available to the development team to explain and clarify any development work to the development team during the sprint.
  5. Make the product backlog item transparent, clear and visible to all members of the development team.
  6. Need to attend the Scrum planning meetings.
  7. Participate in the Sprint Review meetings with stakeholders to review the product increment work.
  8. Participate in the Sprint Retrospective meeting so that he/she can contribute to the improvement areas for the development team.
The below image shows the key roles and responsibilities of a Product Owner.
Who Is Product Owner In Agile Process

Does The Product Owner Need to be a Technical Person?

 
In the software development industry, it is a common question - "Is it necessary that the Product Owner be a Technical Person?" In general, Technical Product Owner represents a person, not a role in the Scrum process. It means the Technical Product Owner will be a person who has a technical background and can work on a technology related to any product. But, it does not mean that the product owner needs to perform any technical task in the scrum process like coding or testing, etc. In simple words, they are acting as a Product Management role in close coordination with the Development Team and the Scrum master.
 

Conclusion

 
So, the Product Master always has different types of roles, responsibilities, and attributes. If anyone wants to be a successful Product Owner, then he/she must have these characteristics and needs to apply them to ensure timely and high-quality project deliveries.