Product Development Manager Job Description

Product Development Manager Job Description

A product development manager plans and develops new goods for use by the public or special interest groups. The job description of a product development manager will include research and development along with marketing and testing.

Position Description

Product development managers are involved in creating fresh merchandise that will fill a particular need within a company, or be sold to make a profit.

Essential Duties and Responsibilities of a Product Development Manager

Creates a prototype of a new product in order to iron out flaws in the final design
Determines the process for creating a new item
Gathers the raw materials necessary to build or create the product being developed
Performs research in order to determine the best way to produce a particular item
Prepares reports on the various procedures that have been tried in order to eliminate methods that are unsuccessful
Oversees product development amongst a team of individuals
Presents new ideas to corporate executives in order to gain permission to develop product lines
Prepares a cost analysis on the development of a new product
Creates marketing campaigns designed to inform people about new product availability
Researches patents, copyrights and trademarks in order to make sure there are no infringement issues involved
Ensures that every phase of a particular project proceeds as scheduled
Makes adjustments to a development plan whenever the current idea is not working well

Required Knowledge, Skills, and Abilities
Has good problem solving abilities
Is able to troubleshoot issues and determine the cause of a plan’s success or failure
Stays current with the latest trends in merchandise
Possesses strong marketing skills
Has excellent leadership abilities
Keeps up to date with changes in the market and technology that would affect new product development
Is able to meet deadlines

Education and Experience

Those who wish to pursue careers as product development managers will need at least a Bachelor’s degree in a discipline relating to the type of product they plan to develop. They should also have at least five years of work experience in a given field. It can be helpful if at least two years of that experience was spent in the research and development department of a company under the direction of an experienced product development manager.

Work Environment

A product development manager can work in a variety of settings depending on the type of products being developed. Some will work in manufacturing environments, while others may perform much of their duties outdoors. These workers will sit for long periods of time followed by extended periods of standing and walking. They typically work in excess of 40 hours per week, and may end up doing some of their tasks at home at night and on the weekends.


The average salary of a product manager is around $75,000 annually. Those on the lower end of the pay scale can make approximately $62,000 per year, which those at the top of the pay scale might earn around $81,000. The pay will vary based upon the size of the company and amount of technical expertise required in order to develop certain types of products.

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