In the world of technology, it takes an enormous amount of effort to build a product that people enjoy using. The secret? Simplicity.
An interface that is easy and intuitive to use, but that can execute complex business tasks simply will get used again and again.
But behind the seemingly effortless front-end of a successful software platform is always a brilliant Product Manager. At Brandworkz, our Head of Product is Hari Walters, the man with the vision and technical know-how to create a Digital Asset Management (DAM) system that marketers actually enjoy using.
A Digital Asset Management platform is fast becoming a must-have central hub of the marketing ecosystem, where internal teams and third party partners can access the brand guidelines and marketing materials they need at anytime, anywhere. Building this system and making sure it will make the everyday job of a marketers easier is a challenge for any Product Manager.
Hari Walters has a rare combination of professional experience having worked in varied roles including developer, business analyst and project manager, gaining an unrivalled set of skills: technical proficiency, business vision, talent for internal team collaboration, an in-depth understanding of how to spec a product and most of all, a burning desire to improve user-experience.
His background has equipped him with an ability to see the big picture yet deliver a world-beating product. “You have to design a product but you have to be strategic. So you think about the future, the way the industry is going and what our competitors are doing (but you don’t want to be following them). It is all about finding the balance of innovation and understanding of the market”, he says.
Hari describes himself as a tech-enthusiast who enjoys seeing how technology can positively change the way we live. He takes inspiration from companies like BBC for the strong focus on usability and education within their products and websites. BBC were also one of the first companies to get him excited about technology as a kid with their BBC Micro computer. He enjoys using Uber or City Mapper to travel in London. He has long recognised that business solutions software users will not accept a chunky, ugly system, but that they expect to have the same user-friendly and efficient experience as they get from the software used in their personal lives.
“At Brandworkz, we are all motivated by making our platform as easy as possible for our users. We understand that there is an emotional bond between people and software because when things go right, people will be excited to use it again; but when things go wrong, there is a strong negative effect – bad software can ruin someone’s work or someone’s day.”
“We are fortunate enough to have a team who work very closely together so everyone knows what is going on. We have cross-department meetings with sales, marketing and tech so we can share the roadmap and product strategy”, Hari says.
Hari takes feedback from project management teams and clients, assimilates market trends and statistics, acts as the technical point of contact between development and clients, and adds a healthy dose of creativity to the mix in order to build Brandworkz into an industry-beating product. He regularly attends sales meetings in order to hear first-hand what prospects are asking for, and of course, writes the detailed specs that the development teams work from.
“The success of our product relies on every team member – from marketing to sales, from project management to developers, from support to operations … everyone is vital”
“Unlike other tech companies where often teams don’t get along (usually sales and development!) and decisions takes ages to be made, Brandworkz has a connected team where everyone is approachable and enthusiastic. Because they care, that makes it so much easier to get things done.”