Product Owner

Company Details

Harvard University

Position Description

Reporting to the Project Management function in the Division of Continuing Education (DCE), the Product Owner will be responsible for defining the product vision, managing the product backlog, and working as a liaison between the developer and stakeholder teams to ensure effective communication and timely feature delivery. The Product Owner will represent stakeholder interests and concerns, act as a decision-maker when there are competing needs, and manage vendor relationships.

Duties and responsibilities include:

  • Understands and maintains knowledge of the Salesforce product roadmap as it impacts DCE, and advises stakeholders accordingly

  • Act as the owner of DCE’s Salesforce implementation by representing stakeholders’ interests regarding development, expansion, and platform enhancements. Collects requirements, performs user research, and provides continuous engagement to ensure that the product direction is addressing concerns, has clear goals, and that the vision aligns with business objectives

  • Writes and grooms user stories to represent stakeholder requirements by providing context to in-house and external development teams. Liaises between stakeholders and the development team to ensure there is a buy-in from stakeholders and clear instructions and deliverables for the developers

  • Manages and prioritizes the backlog to ensure it is ordered based on strategy and business objectives, that enhancements and maintenance work are addressed fairly, dependencies are identified and sequences, and the backlog is kept up-to-date and available to stakeholders as needs evolve

  • Makes decisions when there are competing needs between stakeholders by using research and negotiation skills to problem solve, resolve issues, and communicate transparently

  • Identifies risks by developing mitigation plans and resolves problems that may impact use of the product. Proactively escalates to senior management as necessary

  • Coordinates consulting engagements, technology upgrades, and functional training sessions to manage development work of consultants as needed

Basic Qualifications

  • Minimum of five years’ post-secondary education or relevant work experience

Additional Qualifications and Skills

  • 7+ years of IT experience
  • 5+ years in business analysis or product ownership
  • Advanced subject matter expertise
  • Salesforce experience
  • Strong knowledge of best practices in Product Ownership
  • Salesforce Administrator Certification preferred.
  • Ability to collaborate with a wide range of stakeholders ranging from business leads to vendors to software engineers to ensure development is aligned with goals.
  • Experience conducting user research, gathering information from many sources, filtering what is most important, and synthesizing findings into actionable recommendations.
  • Current understanding of trends, issues, and innovation as they relate to online portals built in Salesforce.
  • Strong knowledge of best practices in UI/UX.
  • Outstanding written and verbal communication skills as well as demonstrated presentation and negotiation abilities.

Certificates and Licenses

  • Completion of Harvard IT Academy specified foundational courses (or external equivalent) preferred

Working Conditions

The University requires all Harvard community members to be fully vaccinated against COVID-19 and remain up to date with COVID-19 vaccine boosters, as detailed in Harvard’s Vaccine & Booster Requirements. Individuals may claim exemption from the vaccine requirement for medical or religious reasons. More information regarding the University’s COVID vaccination requirement, exemptions, and verification of vaccination status may be found at the University’s “COVID-19 Vaccine Information” webpage:

This position will be based in Cambridge, MA. DCE is currently trialing hybrid workplace models with a minimum of 2 days per week on campus, and will actively support some remote work (within a state in which Harvard is registered to do business: CA, CT, MA, MD, ME, NH, NY, RI, and VT) where business and team needs allow. DCE may adjust these as necessary or appropriate. Furthermore, individual flexible and remote work options for this role will be discussed during the interview process.

Additional Information

The Faculty of Arts and Sciences will not provide visa sponsorship for this position.

In order to be considered for this role, a resume and cover letter must be submitted with application.

The Division of Continuing Education (DCE) comprises several entities serving about 30,000 students annually. The Harvard Extension School, the Harvard Summer School, the Harvard Professional Development Programs and the Harvard Institute for Learning in Retirement allow Harvard to serve the learning needs of students across their life. For more than a century, Harvard Extension School has made Harvard faculty and teaching accessible to a diverse community of local, national, and international students. Harvard Extension School enrolls approximately 17,000 students per year in approximately 46 graduate and undergraduate liberal arts and professional fields. More than 1,500 open enrollment courses are offered year-round with over 600 available online are offered at affordable prices to our communities across the world. Harvard Summer School offers approximately 450 courses on the Harvard Campus to 11,000 secondary school, college and adult learners and more than 30 international study abroad programs for up to 600 students each summer. The Division also includes the Harvard Institute for Learning in Retirement with approximately 550 active members and Harvard Professional Development Programs offering nearly 130 short noncredit programs to more than 3,200 participants annually.

All formal offers will be made by FAS Human Resources.

Harvard offers an outstanding benefits package including:
Time Off: 3 – 4 weeks paid vacation, paid holiday break, 12 paid sick days, 11.5 paid holidays, and 3 paid personal days per year; prorated for part-time employees
Medical/Dental/Vision: We offer a variety of excellent medical plans, dental & vision plans, all coverage begins as of your start date.
Retirement: University-funded retirement plan with full vesting after 3 years of service.
Tuition Assistance Program: Competitive tuition assistance program, $40 per class at the Harvard Extension School and discounted options through participating Harvard grad schools.
Transportation: Harvard offers a 50% discounted MBTA pass as well as additional options to assist employees in their daily commute.
Wellness options: Harvard offers programs and classes at little or no cost, including stress management, massages, nutrition, meditation and complimentary health services.
Harvard access to athletic facilities, libraries, campus events and many discounts throughout metro Boston.

Job Function

Information Technology


USA – MA – Cambridge

Job Code

I0858P IT Business Analysis Prfss IV



Division of Continuing Education

Time Status


Salary Grade



00 – Non Union, Exempt or Temporary

Pre-Employment Screening

Criminal, Identity


Monday-Friday, 9-5pm

Commitment to Equity, Diversity, Inclusion, and Belonging

Harvard University views equity, diversity, inclusion, and belonging as the pathway to achieving inclusive excellence and fostering a campus culture where everyone can thrive. We strive to create a community that draws upon the widest possible pool of talent to unify excellence and diversity while fully embracing individuals from varied backgrounds, cultures, races, identities, life experiences, perspectives, beliefs, and values.

EEO Statement

We are an equal opportunity employer and all qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, religion, sex, national origin, disability status, protected veteran status, gender identity, sexual orientation, pregnancy and pregnancy-related conditions, or any other characteristic protected by law.

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