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Senior Product Manager

The Senior Product Manager is responsible for helping to deliver a better customer experience for Californians using government services. They will bring product thinking to state departments in a way that is learnable, scalable, and durable. 

Location: The employee’s workstation is located in Oakland, CA; Sacramento, CA. Travel to the Sacramento headquarters will be required. This position provides telework opportunities in accordance with agency telework policies

Annual salary: $137,220 to $163,476 based on experience and qualifications

Benefits: The state offers many benefits, including pension, health benefits (including after retirement), life insurance, employee assistance program, and much more.

Appointment: This position is appointed by the Governor of California.

Last day to apply: Until filled.

What you’ll do

  • Lead cross-functional teams, working in collaboration with state departments, to help build and deliver great services and experiences for residents; 
  • Help shape and implement business processes and lasting organizational change; 
  • Help establish product management as a new practice in state government.  

We encourage you to apply if you:

  • Understand that product management in state government is different from product management in private sector; 
  • Have a passion for the user and a proven ability to deliver value for customers; 
  • Are comfortable being a consultant, providing expert guidance and advice; 
  • Are experienced in managing diverse stakeholders and leading cross-functional teams. 

Areas our Senior Product Managers support: 

Vision and strategy

  • Champion the customer, ensuring that the needs of Californians are understood and prioritized. 
  • Help establish product thinking and modern product practices as a standard in state government.
  • Establish and communicate product vision, create and operationalize product plans.

Product & project management  

  • Lead teams of researchers, designers, engineers and other SMEs, and department partners, in problem definition, product visioning, planning, and implementation. 
  • Assess and document existing business processes and identify opportunities for organizational change
  • Drive user-focused, data-informed decision making.
  • Facilitate project management processes and practices including project plans, schedule, budget, stakeholder management, stand-ups, backlog grooming, sprint planning and retrospectives.

Stakeholder engagement

  • Collaborate with departmental business programs, IT teams and others to assess need, value, usability, feasibility, cost, and capabilities of potential software or other product solutions.
  • Build and manage relationships with clients and stakeholders across multiple levels of government.
  • Set appropriate expectations, respect and empathize with client needs and internal processes, and tactfully challenge ideas when there are other ways to better deliver on user needs, and make services more equitable and inclusive

You will find additional information about the job in the Duty Statement.

Desirable qualifications

  • 5+ years of product management experience, specifically in the digital or tech space  —  managing cross-functional teams to meet deadlines, navigating complex external client relationships, analyzing and documenting processes and shipping products (having also worked in the gov tech space is a bonus).
  • Ability to identify and understand internal or external customer needs and interests and deliver customer-centric solutions.
  • A track record of launching product experiences that improved the customers’ lives.
  • A track record of leading business process and organizational change.
  • An understanding of qualitative and quantitative research & analytical methods and when to apply them to inform a product plan.
  • Ability to gather input from and communicate with a large number of internal and external stakeholders.
  • Comfortable working on a variety of collaboration platforms, and sometimes adapting to what the client may use.
  • Ability to inspire and rally a team around a clear vision, strategy and roadmap.
  • Ability to manage priorities despite ambiguity and changing circumstances/information.
  • Strong organizational skills and attention to detail.
  • Ability to communicate clearly and increase transparency, with a strong competency in situational awareness and conflict resolution
  • Ability to grow and nurture existing and new client relationships to help drive prioritization across multiple projects and create ecosystems of success
  • Experience in government procurement or in implementing and/or procuring large technology systems is a bonus but not required.
  • Strong ability to communicate to diverse non-technical audiences.

About ODI

We deliver better services to Californians through technology and design. We do so through close partnership with other state departments. Our goal is to create programs and products that are more equitable and effective. We listen to Californians who use a program now or may do so tomorrow and learn about what they need.


  • Build tools and products
  • Create and enhance digital services
  • Conduct research
  • Identify data solutions
  • Offer training

We are a cross-discipline staff with blended backgrounds in:

  • Design
  • Engineering
  • Product
  • Operations
  • Data
  • Research
  • Policy
  • Strategy

Learn more about ODI’s vision and mission.

Diversity, equity, and inclusion at ODI

Diversity, equity, and inclusion help us deliver better government services to Californians.

  • Fostering diversity inspires better ideas and more innovative thinking.
  • Feeling included nurtures a shared sense of community. This drives us to take collective action on challenging problems.
  • Prioritizing equity ensures we build solutions for people whose needs are often overlooked.

We acknowledge our history and present of implicit and structural injustice, bias, and discrimination. We see, hear, and accept each other and the lived experiences we bring to our work. We support each other in learning and developing so we can help all Californians thrive.

We understand this work is never done. That’s why we commit to constant improvement.