Product Managers & UX Designers- How Should they work together?

Product Managers & UX Designers

Product Managers & UX Designers– Do you think they are similar?

No, but in smaller organizations, they combine both roles into one. As teams grow, both split into more specialized responsibilities, each with its area of expertise.

Although they work for the same goal, both are not equal. Both roles have their areas of expertise.

UX Designers decide the product layout and its functionalities based on the user’s perspective, while product managers think about the product’s requirements. 

UX designers are responsible for the success of the product or feature’s design, while PMs are responsible for the overall success of a product or feature. 

However, sometimes both role overlaps and creates confusion or even an unspoken power struggle.

Anyhow, it’s necessary to know the roles and responsibilities individually before knowing how they work together to build great products.

UX Designer.

UX design is a discipline that covers the end-to-end experience of a product. UX designers are the essential link between a product and its users.

They are responsible for understanding challenges faced by the targeted audiences while using a particular product. After then, they work with a solution that helps users to fix those challenges. 

It is done by thinking about customer needs and requirements, mapping them to product functionality, selecting from available design elements, or working with technical or development teams to integrate customer feedback into final implementation. 

UX designers create seamless user experiences for products, services, and processes by combining market research, product development, strategy, and design. As a result, they help the business better understand and meet the needs of its customers.

Skills and Characteristics:
  • Ensures the success of the product/service design
  • Understands the needs of the end-user
  • Performs research and studies on usability
  • Provides an overview of the layout and function of the product
  • Enhances the product’s performance
  • Follows and understands the business objectives.

Product Manager:

A product manager is one of the most challenging roles in business. They not only get to drive product strategy but also directly influence company growth and customer adoption. 

A product manager connects business strategy, design knowledge, and customer needs to build an efficient, feasible, and valuable product.

They primarily focus on achieving the business goals and users’ needs to maximize the return on investment.

As product leaders within their organizations, product managers excel at bringing teams together around a shared understanding of customer problems and how to resolve them.

There may be many different product managers within the same company because each product manager handles a fundamentally different problem. They may work with various clients, business stakeholders, and development teams.

Skills and Characteristics:
  • Is the one who knows the market
  • Has an in-depth understanding of the end-user
  • Has a deep understanding of UX and UI
  • Deals with product planning and product budgeting
  • Coordinates with different departments and stakeholders
  • Understands user needs and product design at a higher level

How Do Product Managers & UX Designers Work Together?

You may have heard that success comes from collaboration. 

As product managers and user experience designers share the goal of improving user experiences, they must work together to achieve it. 

Both roles are responsible for creating products that users want and need. 

The integration of these two roles increases productivity and efficiency and reduces redundancy. 

However, when it comes to product development, a product manager and a UX designer have different roles.

A product manager takes a holistic view of the final user experience by managing other team members, prioritizing features, analyzing data, identifying problems and coming up with solutions.

A UX designer analyzes user interaction with the product at its highest level.

It becomes difficult if both professionals do not understand their ultimate goals.

Let’s check out how both can create an effective partnership.

Establish a Communication:

The first key to success is to start communication between both teams. The project manager and UX designer both need to acknowledge the overlap in the roles.

There may be a possibility that members of each team having difficulties internally, but haven’t said or even notice the issue. By acknowledging that both roles might be getting in each other’s way, a more collaborative and effective relationship can be created.

Additionally, it is advantageous for UX designers to have an understanding of the business context as well as to recognize that there are many other factors involved that need to be considered by product managers.

A Product manager needs to keep in mind that they are responsible for the bigger picture – collaborating among all the groups, advocating for the product vision, defining the what – and not for specific UX designs.

Find out the overlap:

It becomes crucial for both teams to find out and understand where the roles overlap. When Product managers and UX designers map out their areas of overlap, it becomes easy to identify where collaboration can occur. 

Both parties must be honest about the areas where no overlap exists and focus their collaboration efforts on the areas where overlap does exist.

The better way to find out is by creating a Venn diagram or merely listing the typical responsibilities for each role so you can see whether there are any common threads for each project or in general.

As a result, both roles will be able to visualize their responsibilities and if there is any opportunity to collaborate. 

Build areas of collaboration:

After both teams understand the areas to overlap, it’s time to build the areas of collaboration between the two roles. When the two teams collaborate, their impact is magnified and build the best possible product with an amazing user experience design

Both parties must understand that collaboration does not equal a lack of ownership. Collaboration is not a way to avoid owning your responsibilities, nor is it a way to avoid being held accountable.

When PMs and designers collaborate, both parties need to understand how they each contribute value to the collaboration, and how their contribution will be measured.

Anyways, To build a successful product, you need to break down silos and have an open, honest culture where teams can collaborate, share ideas, and build strong relationships. Product managers and designers need to work together to maximize the impact of their work. 

Let’s say we are splitting a product development process into two main parts – user and business. The product manager is dealing more with the business part, while the UX designer is dealing more with the user, but they always meet in between and sometimes even overlap.

If the responsibilities of both the roles are identified within a team and the Product Manager and UX Designer are sticking to what they’re expected to deliver, then they are on the right track. 

Wrapping Up:

Product managers and UX designers are both crucial to the success of a company, especially in startup companies. Both must work together to form a great product that is functional and innovative.

Understanding each other’s roles will help promote more collaboration between departments and ensure that critical components of the product are not being overlooked.

Both teams need to understand their roles and responsibilities individually before trying to bridge the gap. When both roles collaborate, designers and project managers can improve upon each other’s expertise. But for collaboration to work, there must be a stronger foundation of trust between groups and members within respective teams.

Along with providing services for software development, Gloify even deals with creative and innovative UI & UX Design Services. If your business is looking for any services related to Product Design, then our experts can offer you the best solutions, that can outperform your competitors.