Fuse Classroom is a top 5 finalist for the Product ICT Award 2020 and we got to chat with Product Manager, Pratibha Shrestha on what it’s like to build and maintain the AI enabled platform! As a Product Manager, Pratibha is responsible for leading the product success of Fuse Classroom. Read below her insight on being a product manager and delivering a global world class product.
What is the day to day like as a Product Manager?
Tasks during the day can vary and be hard to predict! My days usually range from collaborating with Fuse Classroom users in identifying their needs, working closely with engineers to deliver product features, ideating solutions with the design team, analyzing the competitive landscape and strategizing a well defined product roadmap with the executive team to provide users with a seamless experience.
It’s important I provide immediate feedback on any changes that need to be made in the platform and execute how features can be delivered on time. Planning out the hours in my day help me prioritize each task effectively.
What makes a product great and successful?
For me, a great product is one which solves not one singular problem but can address the ecosystem in which many problems arise. With an effective infrastructure and elegant design, the product has infinite potential to solve more problems. Fuse Classroom has many features but listening to our customers, making sure we stand out, and maintain our design philosophy helps keep it simple, impactful, and insightful.
What fosters good collaboration in delivering a product?
Collaboration and communication are key when delivering a product. It’s important to create an inclusive environment where sharing ideas, being proactive, establishing clear timelines, and defining ownership is encouraged. Most importantly, building camaraderie and having fun with your team members is necessary. It’s been a great opportunity and experience building relationships with my amazing colleagues! I always look forward to using the few minutes before a meeting to catch up and talk about non work-related things.
How do you create a successful product strategy? What are the top goals to keep in mind?
It starts out by defining the vision of the product and planning what should be delivered and why. There’s a lot to solve within the education sector which means a lot of room for opportunity and growth as well. Listening to our customers and hearing the problems they are facing helps us plan how to solve them. We work with the business team to align with sales and marketing and then release features in a cadence most impactful for our clients. Maintaining close collaboration with our clients before and after major releases for any refinements is necessary to do.
What does it mean to deliver a product that is customer-centric?
Creating a product that’s customer-centric means learning to put yourself in the users shoes, understanding their pain points and strategizing how to solve their problems through our product. Having empathy and listening creates a product customers can look forward to using.
The Product Team communicates with all 3 roles Fuse Classroom caters to regularly: school administrators, instructors and students. It’s important we constantly update them about new developments or changes within the platform. Collaborating with the users and schools we partner with to build a product that caters to their specific needs has felt deeply rewarding!
“Combining user feedback, constant market research, and collaborating with internal teams is important for the delivery and design of Fuse Classroom.” – Pratibha Shrestha
How do you feel about Fuse Classroom being a top 5 nominee for the Product ICT Award 2020?
It’s very exciting! All of us have put in a lot of work during and after the pandemic to deliver a product that eases the burden of digitizing education, especially in institutions that are not necessarily tech savvy. It feels wonderful to know that it’s being recognized!
What makes Fuse Classroom unique and easy to use? Why is it so important today and for the future?
Fuse Classroom is designed with students in mind and also caters to other audiences such as school administrators, teachers, and parents. It’s unique because it combines all the various aspects of teaching and learning together in one platform. The AI-enabled features help reimagine the classroom by assessing student progress, recommending study material, and include a chatbot that assists users with the platform.
Overall, Fuse Classroom aims to enhance the education experience and we look forward to continuing making it easy, interactive, effective, and fun!
What’s a quick tip you would like to give to other Product Managers?
Listen to your customers and understand their needs.
I like to think of myself as an advocate for customers by prioritizing their voices first. Being able to create a product that accommodates our users makes me feel proud of what we do at Fuse Classroom!