Happy Monday techies! 🐪
Last month I posted a tweet asking the PM community for their favorite PM SaaS tools.. and to my surprise, it went semi-viral. 😳 Partially because PMs love sharing their fave tools, but also because I unknowingly stirred up a lot of deep-seated emotions (good & bad) just by mentioning Jira and Confluence. Who knew? 🤷♀️
In any case, I gathered up all the insights and wrote an in-depth article about the types of SaaS tools you should be using as a PM, and specific ones recommended from the community. Check it out and let me know your thoughts!
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Best Product Management SaaS Tools: The 2023 Must-Use List
Every great product manager uses a number of SaaS tools to be effective in their role, but it’s not always clear what types of tools and which specific SaaS product(s) you should use as a PM. While the answer depends a lot on the team, the company, the product, and the feature you’re working on, I’m going to share some across-the-board SaaS tools you probably already use, and a few you might not currently be using but probably should.
For this article, I gathered up all the insights and suggestions from the product management community on Twitter & LinkedIn and created a comprehensive list of the tools you should definitely be using, and the ones you probably should use depending on your specific job function, company and product.
First, what’s a SaaS tool?
SaaS stands for Software-as-a-Service and it’s a way of delivering applications over the internet as a service. Instead of installing and maintaining software, you simply access the app via your browser where updates happen automatically thus freeing you from complex software and hardware management (think installing apps on your phone/laptop where you have to update them regularly).
What SaaS tools do Product Mangers need?
Product managers across the tech industry use a number of different SaaS tools to help them complete core PM responsibilities like:
- Prioritizing tasks/goals and collaborating with cross-functional teams to achieve those goals efficiently and effectively
- Measuring business goals and harnessing data to make important business and product decisions
- Playing an active role in the software development lifecycle (SDLC) also known as the software development process
Hundreds of SaaS tools exist for each of these core responsibilities and each of them offer different features and different user experiences. Understandably it’s a daunting task trying to figure out which tools work best for your needs, and what you personally prefer.
That’s why I wanted to hear directly from the product management community about the SaaS tools they use, which are their favorite, and how they use them to excel in their PM role. And boy did I get some great responses (and some passionate debates)! Check out the tweet for yourself (it went semi-viral).
In the rest of this article is a breakdown of all the different tools you should consider using as a PM. For each of these tools I’ll do a deeper product dive into the most popular tool as polled the product management community along with some other note-worthy tools you might want to check out.
Tools for achieving business and product goals:
(1) Roadmapping tools to help prioritize what to build next, align everyone to the same goal and visualize the product roadmap
(2) Product analytics tools to help you understand how your customers using your product, and where in the funnel you can optimize and improve for different product goals (i.e. conversion, engagement)
Tools for roadmapping & team collaboration:
(3) Project management tools for breaking down projects, assigning and keeping track of tasks
(4) Documentation tools to share and document knowledge across teams
Tools for playing an active part in the software development lifecycle with your dev team:
(5) Data Visualization tools are different from product analytics tools in that they are great at visualizing any data that’s being queried from a data warehouse. This includes filtering and sorting through all types of data including log data.
(6) API Platform tools are a great way for PMs to play an active part in the software development life cycle by helping debug and test apps.
(7) Flow & Diagramming tools to help your dev team and UI/UX team visualize user flow quickly and seamlessly.
(1) Roadmapping Tools
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