How is a Product Owner measured?

Last post 02:35 pm March 26, 2020
by Hector Morales Kott
9 replies
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12:06 pm March 23, 2015

I was asked this question today and I must admit I did not know the answer. My first thought was on measuring ROI, but from reading more it seems like its such a complex role it's difficult to measure just one thing. Would it be more accurate to say that as a member of the Scrum team, measuring success as a team is what is needed?

12:36 pm March 23, 2015

> I was asked this question today and I must admit I did not know the answer

The question to ask in response is "who wants to do the measuring and why?"

> My first thought was on measuring ROI...

The PO is accountable for ROI to stakeholders, but as the owner of the product he or she can also be best positioned to define how that value ought to be measured in the first place.

Essentially, Increments of a product can be measured for the purpose of inspection and adaptation, while the Product Owner should be held to account.

11:22 pm March 23, 2015

I would recommend including the customer satisfaction as a measurement for him/her.

04:50 pm March 24, 2015

Hey Ian, congrats on your 1000th post! :)

02:13 am March 25, 2015

It looks like 1000 is the tipping point for being a "Veteran Member". I rather liked being an Advanced Member...being called a Veteran Member makes me feel old.

02:56 am March 25, 2015

Well, you could consider re-registering, that would make you a Newbie. But it would only be fair if you also would change your picture: your won't be pushed in a corner.

I think you are the anchor man of this forum, I appreciate and value your inputs very much and am sure many other do as well.

Congrats veteran!

09:47 am March 25, 2015

Based on the Scrum Guide, could the Product Owner be measured by how well they manage the backlog? The product backlog management would have to be broken down to segements that would be measured individually. Also, there would need to be correalation to the product success factors.

The Product Owner is responsible for maximizing the value of the product and the work of the Development Team. How this is done may vary widely across organizations, Scrum Teams, and individuals.

The Product Owner is the sole person responsible for managing the Product Backlog. Product Backlog management includes:

Clearly expressing Product Backlog items;
Ordering the items in the Product Backlog to best achieve goals and missions;
Optimizing the value of the work the Development Team performs;
Ensuring that the Product Backlog is visible, transparent, and clear to all, and shows what the Scrum Team will work on next; and,
Ensuring the Development Team understands items in the Product Backlog to the level needed.

02:19 pm March 25, 2015

It has always been my assumption that the highest responsibility of the PO is:
"The Product Owner is responsible for maximizing the value of the product and the work of the Development Team."

So, what if we measured value, using the EBMgt.org metrics? IMO, EBM is the software equivalent of ROI.

What if we held the PO responsible for an acceptable level of value/software ROI being delivered?

Having said that, I would certainly never say to measure someone based on metrics alone. You'd also want to judge based on soft skill factors too, like (Is she moral? Does she trade short term risk for long term risk? Does she get along with others? Is her long term strategy in line with company strategy? ... etc etc etc)

04:30 pm February 10, 2016

I would check also if stakeholders, teams, customer support and other dependent on product work are happy. THings like leadership, visionary, way how to deal with conflicts and critical moments shows what kind of Owner person is.

06:44 am March 26, 2020

OKRs could help