Senior Product Owner

Department for Work and Pensions

Closing date: 19 Aug 2019

Reference number



Up to £57,275


Grade 7

Contract type


Business area

DWP - Digital

Type of role

Information Technology

Working pattern

Flexible working, Full-time, Job share, Part-time



Number of posts



Newcastle-upon-Tyne, North East

About the job

Job description

Digital Delivery for Shared Platforms

Digital Delivery for Shared Platforms (DDSP) evolves and transforms some of the most critical systems in DWP to unleash the potential of Digital services to reduce overheads, cost and friction for citizen and agent-facing services. We enable service teams to take control of their own velocity, removing entry-barriers and dependencies.

DDSP is made up of a collection of functions working in tandem, that enable the successful delivery of services across DWP;

• Integration Technologies – Implementing an Application Programming Interface (API) led integration strategy to create products to drive frictionless data sharing across DWP and other government departments.

• Payment Services – Innovating and deploying industry shaping Fintech, facilitating around 32% of the BACS payment transactions in the UK’s payments infrastructure serving some 22m citizens, who collectively receive a total of £170bn in payments annually.

• Citizen Information – Maintaining and protecting the personal records of 110 million people, to create faster and more efficient bulk data sharing, more accurate benefit assessments and better debt recovery across DWP and beyond.

Our services supply citizen information across DWP and beyond. We are working across Digital Group to harness the power of our data and provide quicker access to a richer quality and greater understood sources of data. We aim to create faster and more efficient bulk data sharing, more accurate benefit assessments and better debt recovery across DWP, other departments and third party partners.

Core Purpose

The Product Owner is responsible for producing world class products for public services in line with the Government’s digital services standard, that are accessed by millions of users. The Product Owner will use their knowledge of user needs and business objectives to frame problems and set priorities for their delivery teams.

The Core Purposes of the Product Owner are:

1. Set The Product Vision - Form the vision for the product(s) and engage with teams and stakeholders in the development of that vision over time.

2. Product Ownership - Define the minimum viable product and work with the product team(s) to agree candidates for release, defining delivery plans and communicating progress to the wider business and customers as appropriate.

3. Lifecycle Management - Maintain and iterate a product over time to continuously meet user needs and support in the effective production.

4. Managing product backlogs - Create the list of backlog items and prioritize them based on the overall strategy and business objectives.

5. User focussed - Act as the voice of the business and the users during development and stabilisation.

6. Agile - Ability to work in a fast paced, evolving environment and utilises an iterative method and flexible approach to enable rapid delivery.

As a Senior Product Owner, you will manage the development of a product. You will work with products which are either highly visible or have key strategic value to the organisation. You will be responsible for strategic and tactical product decisions, using your knowledge of user needs and business goals to frame problems and set priorities for the delivery team. You will also be actively involved in developing the product strategy and managing the product roadmap.

As a Senior Product Owner you will have expert knowledge of product management techniques. You may work as part of a larger product team, managing more junior Product Owners or may work with a Lead Product Owner to manage multiple products.


- Own the vision for the product, working with stakeholders to ensure strategic fit and engaging the development team to maintain alignment and buy in.

- Develop the product strategy and manage the product roadmap as well as prioritising the product backlog through a range of techniques to maximise value and return on investment.

- Identify and communicate user needs to the development and delivery team through the creation of backlog items (user stories) and representing users and other stakeholders at team meetings such as planning and review session.

- Define product goals and metrics, monitoring performance against outcomes.

- Manage, influence and negotiate with stakeholders and communicate progress and achievements, championing the product within the department.

- Lead product team, and ensure the product is developed to an appropriate level of quality taking into consideration expected lifetime, investment and timeframes.

- Support the professional development of associate product owners and product owners in your area.

Essential Criteria

• To have worked across department or functional boundaries in order to effectively communicate a product vision and gain stakeholder buy in.

• Have created and communicated a product roadmap, receiving and acting upon challenge from stakeholders.

• Have successfully delivered one or more products meeting a number of successful outcomes.

• Had experience of managing products in a complex environment, effectively prioritising backlog items to maximise value.

• Have made effective decisions based on incomplete information using a range of techniques.


We'll assess you against these behaviours during the selection process:

  • Communicating and Influencing
  • Changing and Improving
  • Managing a Quality Service
  • Making Effective Decisions

Technical skills

We'll assess you against these technical skills during the selection process:

  • Product Ownership
  • Agile and Lean Practices
  • User Centred analysis



Civil Service pension schemes may be available for successful candidates.


In addition to salary there is an attractive benefits package which includes:

• an employer pension contribution of up to 20%.

• a generous annual leave allowance.

• flexible working arrangements.

Packages will be discussed with successful candidates based on skills and experience.


The salary for this role is up to £51,963 p.a. Where the maximum salary is offered an additional allowance up to £5,312 may be paid for exceptional candidates depending on skills and experience.

In all cases the additional allowance is non-pensionable. The requirement to continue paying an additional allowance and the amount payable is subject to review at least annually. Flexible starting pay may apply to these roles.

Things you need to know


Successful candidates must pass basic security checks.

Nationality statement

Candidates will be subject to UK immigration requirements as well as Civil Service nationality rules.

If you're applying for a role requiring security clearance please be aware that foreign or dual nationality is not an automatic bar. However certain posts may have restrictions which could affect those who do not have sole British nationality or who have personal connections with certain countries outside the UK.

Selection process details

This vacancy is using Success Profiles, and will assess your Behaviours, Experience and Technical skills.
Stage 1: Application & Sift - The information you provide on your CV and Personal Statement will be used to assess you against the Essential Criteria listed in the advert.

Please note that your personal statement should be aligned to the Essential Criteria listed in the job description.

Stage 2: Interview - The final stage of the process will be a blended, face to face interview which will assess the Behaviours and Technical Skills listed in the advert. There will also be a 10 minute presentation based on a topic to be confirmed prior to Interview. Only candidates that have been successful at the sift stage will be invited to attend.

If at any time through the selection process you do not meet the minimum standard required for this role we may contact you to discuss an alternative position.

Feedback will only be provided if you attend an interview or assessment.

Nationality requirements

Open to UK, Commonwealth and European Economic Area (EEA) and certain non EEA nationals. Further information on whether you are able to apply is available here.

Working for the Civil Service

The Civil Service Code sets out the standards of behaviour expected of civil servants.

We recruit by merit on the basis of fair and open competition, as outlined in the Civil Service Commission's recruitment principles.
The Civil Service embraces diversity and promotes equality of opportunity. There is a guaranteed interview scheme (GIS) for candidates with disabilities who meet the minimum selection criteria.

Apply and further information

Contact point for applicants

Sift/interview dates and location

Sift dates to be confirmed.

Interviews to take place in Newcastle from W.C 2/9/19.

If successful and transferring from another Government Department a security check may be carried out.

Further information

A reserve list will be held for a period of 6 months from which further appointments can be made.

Applicants who are successful at interview will be, as part of pre-employment screening subject to a check on the Internal Fraud Database (IFD). This check will provide information about employees who have been dismissed for fraud or dishonesty offences. This check also applies to employees who resign or otherwise leave before being dismissed for fraud or dishonesty had their employment continued. Any applicant’s details held on the IFD will be refused employment.

Our recruitment process is underpinned by the principle of appointment on the basis of fair and open competition and appointment on merit, as outlined in the Civil Service Commissioners’ Recruitment Principles.

If you are not satisfied with the response you receive, you can contact the Civil Service Commission, which regulates all Civil Service recruitment.

New Tax Free Childcare Scheme

Any move to DWP will mean you will no longer be able to carry on claiming childcare vouchers.

Reasonable Adjustment

If a person with disabilities is put at a substantial disadvantage compared to a non-disabled person, we have a duty to make reasonable changes to our processes.

If you need a change to be made so that you can make your application, you should:

- Contact Government Recruitment Service via as soon as possible before the closing date to discuss your needs.

- Complete the “Assistance required” section in the “Additional requirements” page of your application form to tell us what changes or help you might need further on in the recruitment process. For instance, you may need wheelchair access at interview, or if you’re deaf, a Language Service Professional.


If you feel your application has not been treated in accordance with the Recruitment Principles and you wish to make a complaint, in the first instance, you should contact Government Recruitment Services via email:

If you are not satisfied with the response you receive from the Department, you can contact the Civil Service Commission:

Click here to visit Civil Service Commission.

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