Technical Product Director
GiveDirectly · New York, NYProduct Poverty Alleviation & Economic Development Posted 4 days ago Claim this company
GiveDirectly (GD) aims to reshape international giving - and millions of lives - by providing cash grants directly to the world’s poorest. The Brookings Institution estimates that $70B of cash transfers would be required to eliminate the poverty gap; the aid sector currently spends $135B each year, much of it on evidence-free interventions. GiveDirectly wants to change that, establishing cash transfers as a benchmark for foreign aid - as the index fund is a benchmark for the financial industry - and in the process accelerating the end of extreme poverty.
GD has raised over $200m since launching in 2011, delivered cash to more than 125,000 families, and launched offices in 7 countries. We’ve also supported large-scale, experimental research that indicates strong recipient impact of our programs. As a result GD has been celebrated as one of the most innovative non-profit companies by Fast Company, while the growing cash transfer movement and GD’s leading role within it have been featured in the New York Times Magazine, This American Life, Foreign Affairs, and The Economist.
We’re looking for exceptional talent to grow our marketing team. Our culture is blunt, analytical, non-hierarchical, and fast-paced. We recruit candidates from top organizations across all industries - our team has hailed from consultancies, investment banks, start-ups, non-profits, and government to name a few. We value ability and willingness to learn over years of experience. We offer competitive salary and benefits and performance-based bonuses.
As the lead of GiveDirectly’s first-ever product and analytics team, you will ultimately be responsible for all revenue focused technology at GiveDirectly. This includes GiveDirectly’s existing web products (including our website and GDLive), new product builds, and GiveDirectly’s donor data CRM and analytics. You will partner with the c-suite to define a strategy and technology roadmap, including understanding what digital products to build or invest in to best accelerate the rate at which we can deliver effective, empowering aid to those living in poverty. You will own planning and technical execution end-to-end, from prototyping to launch. The products you own will highlight recipients’ perspectives and preferences, empower passionate donors to contribute to GiveDirectly’s fundraising efforts, and enable internal teams to work at maximal efficiency.
This role is best suited for candidates with meaningful customer-facing product experience who have an entrepreneurial mindset and experience managing fast-paced, ambitious teams. They are excited about finding the right technical solution for a host of diverse fundraising problems whether the answer is a custom-built app or an off-the-shelf platform. They will be advocates for balancing short-term goals and long-term vision and be the ultimate managers of tech debt. They are not only comfortable writing technical specs but have a keen eye for design and user experience and a strong ear for user preferences and feedback. As owner of data and analytics they will also be responsible for leading data driven testing of products. They are the ultimate owner for delivering an exceptional experience to donors through digital engagement - building a community of donors & advocates excited about evidence, impact, and choice.
This role will report to the Head of Growth. If successful, you have the potential to drive step change difference in the dollars we can commit to the poor.
- Act as technical owner of GiveDirectly’s existing and future product, data [Salesforce and Redshift], and analytics [Periscope] infrastructure including decisioning on build vs. buy
- Define and execute against GiveDirectly’s digital product and analytics roadmap
- Serve as product manager both by coordinating projects across engineering, design, and growth as well as gathering feedback from users and prioritizing the backlog
- Define and analyze metrics to understand and improve product performance
- Develop and refine the process we use for planning, building, maintaining, and evaluating projects
- Manage a team of up to three growth technology roles, including an engineer and analyst
- Own the quality of the data in our CRM and prioritize improvements to data model, data integrity, and reporting
- 5+ years in a product management or project management role
- Experience partnering with cross-functional teams including growth, engineering, and design to define, build, test, and maintain products
- Background in conducting user interviews as well as providing feedback on ux/ui designs and workflows
- Track record in taking products from ideation to launch
- Strong people manager
- Great communication and experience working with executive teams to drive product roadmaps
- Experience with Salesforce
- Experience identifying, hiring, and managing external engineering and design firms
- Recipients first.
We prioritize recipient preferences over those of donors or ourselves.
We do not impose our preferences, or judgments, on the beneficiaries; instead we respect and empower them to make their own choices, elevating their voices in the global aid debate. This value is core to GiveDirectly’s identity as the first organization exclusively devoted to putting the poor in control of how aid money is spent. It comes at a potential cost, as it means that neither we nor donors get to set priorities (and we may even lose some “efficiency” in providing this option).
- Team next.
We do what’s best for organizational - not individual - success.
This is a team sport, where we will succeed (or fail) together. The best players are not those with the best individual statistics, but those with biggest impact on our overall performance. We avoid territoriality, self-promotion, and I’m above this attitudes.
- Be proactively candid.
We say what we believe, and are honest in sharing information.
Having confidence that other people are telling us what they truly believe, without gloss or omission, is critical to effective communication and to our ability to learn and grow from feedback. We owe it to each other - and our donors - to instill this confidence even though giving and receiving information candidly are unusual in both professional and social life, and can be very uncomfortable.
- Create positive energy
We strive to be a source - not drain - of energy for our colleagues.
Our work is hard, practically and emotionally, and we cannot overemphasize the importance of maintaining a positive attitude, enjoying the company of our colleagues, and not taking ourselves too seriously. In doing so, we aspire to generate energy and excitement amongst our colleagues in pursuing our mission. This should not preclude candor, and we aspire to achieve both.
- Think rigorously; act quickly.
We are intellectually rigorous with a drive towards action - not debate.
We reason from first principles, grounding our decisions in objective claims about the world, rather than hard-to-disprove assertions or hierarchy. We aim to brainstorm inclusively and respectfully, but critically self-vet ideas we put forward, so as to ensure productive and prudent decision making.
Demanding this level of rigor forces us to think harder about decisions and our assumptions than we otherwise might. This is a real cost. It can be taken too far: it is possible to overthink decisions, and we avoid debate for the sake of debate. We are not here to philosophize or ensure consensus. We decide and act quickly, avoiding getting bogged down in debates.
- Accept reality. Propose solutions.
We do not dwell on problems. We work actively to create solutions.
There will always be an endless list of things to improve. We focus on the things that can be changed; find the most important of those things, and propose actionable answers. We do not allow “problems” to weigh us down and be a source of negativity. We are forward looking, which we believe not only leads to better team outcomes, but also creates a more enjoyable, energizing environment for all.
- Be productively ambitious.
We take the risks to pursue industry-changing success, not incremental progress.
We seek step-change improvements at all levels, and are willing to make big-bets; we do not accept complacency nor do we simply optimize existing processes. In doing so, we allow ourselves to dream big with a belief that perceived constraints are merely opportunities for creativity.
Such ambition not only requires hard work (i.e., this is not a 9-5 job), but also a willingness to accept and learn from temporary setbacks and failures. In accepting these failures, we’re conscious to not point fingers, nor obsess over “mistakes” made.
- Know yourself and grow.
We recognize and accept our imperfections with a focus on growth.
We are an organization of exceptional people and trust in each other’s abilities, yet we recognize that none of us is perfect. We strive to maintain an accurate understanding of our individual and institutional strengths and weaknesses, in order to position ourselves to maximize our chances of success.
At the same time, we seek personal growth for ourselves and our teammates. Feedback is given with a spirit of helpfulness, and sought out with a desire to learn.