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Why is the program manager the liaison you need?

3m 09s

In their One Question for UpTop Health video series, UpTop Health experts discuss why the program manager is the liaison you need from their article, “The Program Manager is Your Secret Weapon in UX Design.”

Moderator: John Sloat, (CEO)
Interviewees: Craig Nishizaki (Head of Business), Jon Hu (Director of Program Management)
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Episode Transcript

Moderator:  Hi, welcome to One Question with UpTop Health. Today’s article is “The program manager is your secret weapon in UX design.” After reading this article, the question I have is, why is a program manager the liaison you need? Why is that individual that special liaison? Jon, if you could lead us off please with an answer that’d be great.

Jon: Your program manager is going to focus on the overall day-to-day business UX and development goals as they oversee the programs and the projects that they’re overseeing; basically the work-streams that they’re overseeing. They’re part diplomat, creative, and technical all in one package and with their in-depth knowledge of everything going on, they can manage, navigate, negotiate and clear any roadblocks that get in the way of their teams’ need to complete their work. As they report their progress to the executive team and stakeholders, the focus should always be around the end business goals. Because that’s what the stakeholders are all looking towards and it’s the why and the what of how everything comes together at the end of the day. Craig do you have any thoughts you want to add?

Craig: Yeah, one thing that we’ve seen in all the years that we’ve been doing this work is the project manager and program manager are critical players in this from the client side. The reason I say the two separately is in a lot of cases a project manager may be more of the coordinator type person whereas the program manager owns the outcomes, the budget, and the results more so and has more of a minds eye towards the business outcomes. If you don’t have somebody that understands the digital product development process, you can really get mired in a lot of the details that aren’t critical path items. If you don’t keep in mind the critical path and the time frames, then you end up with scope creep and requirements being pushed in at the last minute. You end up with things that seem nominal that really create a big impact on the timeframe in the budget. So having a solid program manager as the head of that project on the client-side or representing it from an agency for the client side is critical to the success of a digital project.

Moderator: Thank you guys.

Craig/Jon: Yeah. thank you.