How Do Product Owners Help In Agile Implementation?

A Product Owner (PO) is considered as a member of the Agile team who acts as a single voice for the customer and stakeholders. Combined with development of the team, the product owner establishes the sequence of the backlog items based on programme priorities, events and meetings.

He also defines and accepts the requirements for the product to drive iteration goals and in prioritising Stories. He also coordinates with the other Product Owners, the System Team and the Product Management through each iteration and PI for delivering value.

Product Owner - Characteristics 

The product owner (PO) is a key player in the development of a solution to the Agile team. He gathers immense functional knowledge of the business and knows what the business would need in the near and future term. This helps the Agile team in answering the questions related to functional and nonfunctional requirements.

His other major characteristics also include:-

  • Understands The Product Vision:- As a subject matter expert, the product owner understands the business of the organization and provides a vision for changing the product into a long-term solution to address specific business requirements.
  • Implements The Customer Expectations:- The product owner always understands the customer intentions and goals with the product and implements the expectations. Customer Delight is the Ultimate Goal!
  • Responsible Decisions:- Knowing the product vision and the customer expectations helps the product owner to make crucial and responsible decisions about the product. Hence, the product owner prioritizes the requirements as the team moves through different sprints. The PO also works with the team to arrive at the acceptance criteria that will be used at the release level before the functionalities go into production.

  • Managing The Product Backlog:- The product owner is responsible for the generation and management of the list of work to be completed by the development team. This involves writing product backlog items along with acceptance criteria, and ordering them to achieve the product vision.
  • Participation In Development Events:- The product owner plays a key role in the development events including planning, review, retrospective, the sprint and daily scrum. During the planning activities, the PO works with the stakeholders to determine the content and steps required to deliver the next iteration at a sprint, release or product level. 


Responsibilities - Product Owner

The Product Owner holds the responsibility for project success and is ultimately responsible to the team, stakeholders and to the company. He also has clear vision of product, defining those vision in form of well defined user stories, prioritising user stories together with team and estimating them to have clear time line of the product.

The responsibilities of a product owner are as follows:-

  • Alignment on Vision:- Product goal setting and the creation of a vision are the responsibility of the product owner. The vision needs to be clearly communicated with all those involved in the product including stakeholders and the development team.
  • Creates and Maintains The Product Backlog:- As a lead role in the agile team, the product owners are responsible for the product success. By creating and communicating a clear vision, the product owner focuses on the efforts of the team upon delivering the best possible customer value.
  • Learning and Development:- The product owner should learn, observe, analyse and adapt to the market changes. He should also learn and communicate with  customers and the end users. Hence, giving feedback to the development team about the changes, process and interactions.
  • Inspection Of The Product Progress:- The product owner plays a major role in inspection and understanding the change and to ensure that the team adapts to the change in the market and the customers.




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