The role of the CTO is not just technical anymore. Data-driven product development requires a new skill set that includes customer understanding, process improvement and project management. Data-driven product development has become an essential aspect in competitive markets where companies are constantly looking to improve themselves and their products to stay ahead of the curve. Data can be used for everything from prioritizing features, making design decisions, testing hypotheses, or providing insight into what customers need most. It’s no longer enough for the CTO to know how to code; they need to understand data too!
Chief Technology Officer
Data and analytics are changing the way we build products. Data is now a cornerstone input for product development decisions, rather than just being used to measure performance post launch. The role of Chief Technology Officer (CTO) has evolved alongside this change. It’s no longer enough to have technical expertise, they must also be able to communicate with non-technical stakeholders on their work as well as help determine what problems should be solved through technology.
As Data-Driven Product Development becomes a new norm, CTOs need to shift from the traditional role of being an “ideas person” and instead focus on how they can help their organization leverage data.
Addorrar provides a brief discussion on what it means for Data-Driven Product Developers to become Data-Driven Product Managers. We also provide five tips that will be useful as you make these shifts in your career or company culture:
- Identify who is responsible for each stage of Data Driven Development Processes (i.e., Data Gathering, Data Understanding, Data Manipulation)
- Know when to use which tools/techniques like Feature Engineering/Data Pipelines or Machine Learning Algorithms
- Know Data Staging and Data Quality issues that will come up during the Data-Driven Development Processes, before they happen
- Be able to communicate with stakeholders about Data Driven Product Management decisions.
- Understand the value of Domain Knowledge when making these decisions.
I’ve been with company X for the past three years and have seen Data-driven product development take a huge leap in our organization. Data used to be something that we only looked at on an ad hoc basis, but now it is crucial when making decisions of any kind.
- Data has helped us understand who our customer base really is, what they want from their products and how this data can help improve processes over time.
- Data also provides visibility into potential changes we may need to make if trends change in order to stay ahead of competitors or meet changing needs within our market space.
- As CTOs continue on expanding their horizons through learning new skill sets such as data analysis, it will become more important than ever before to invest heavily in Data-driven product development.
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Data Driven Product Development Essentials for CTOs
Become Data Literate
Data literacy is understanding the implications and nuances of data rather than just its raw form. It involves a more holistic approach to using data in order to understand it’s limitations as well as how it can be used effectively for decision making purposes
Invest in Data Collection Methods
Data collection methods include things like site analytics or qualitative research, with focus on how customers use the product.
Invest In Process Improvement Tools
Data Driven Product Development Essentials for CTOs Data is no longer a luxury but instead becomes mandatory when it comes down to improving processes which at this point seem like they were never really designed well enough in the first place.