The joy of a brilliant product owner

Peter Parfitt
Oct 7 · 2 min read

One thing that has been occupying me over the last few months has been reflecting on the importance of a really strong product owner in service. Someone who is an ally and at all times has your back but occasionally will have a difficult conversation with the delivery team, and push them to be the best that they can.

Product Owner image — I’m a product owner not a magisian, but I can see why you might be confused

Where you have these people in your organisation, cherish them, nurture them and praise them for the support that they provide you along the way because they can make the difference between success and failure, especially when projects run over a long time frame.

As you can see we have recently made some pretty major changes to our planning and building control pages, incorporating a complete service redesign. It’s been a long slog , we have after all the overlay of unitary to layer on this, taking planning advice from four legacy district councils and creating unified and simplified user journeys was never going to be easy, but the team have done a great job.

Culture eats Strategy for Breakfast

But the culture in the new planning team is what has allowed this to take place and this has been visible all the way through the process

None of this though would have been possible without the product owner that we have had supporting us along the way, I won’t embarrass them by naming them, but they know who they are. Empathetic with a desire to be innovative, pragmatic with a thirst for change and most importantly empowered they have made a real difference to the work that Unboxed and Scroll have delivered, ably led by Jez Vibert in my team.

Long may it continue, and long may we fight the good fight for those people in services who understand, empathise and support. Bravo!

Buckinghamshire Digital Service

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