Essential product management tools (plus templates to get you started)

Essential product management tools (plus templates to get you started)

All of us at monday.com

Product management is like no other job.

You’re a combination of tactical, real-world strategist and pie-in-the-sky oracle of your industry.

To do your job well (i.e to plan and execute a product strategy that development, marketing and sales can build upon) you need the right tools.

Tools that help you…

  • Research your product’s strong and weak points
  • Research the strong and weak points of your competitors
  • Create a roadmap and execute your product plan
  • Effectively communicate your plans with stakeholders

So let’s check out a few, shall we?

This article will break down a few of the top product management tools to help you do your job. It will also provide you with actionable product management templates you can use to make your brainstorming and planning processes more efficient.

What are product management tools?

A product management tool is an application or platform that helps product managers envision, plan, schedule, and oversee the development of a product.

Project management software enables product managers to:

  • Outline roles, responsibilities and deadlines
  • Showcase progress to stakeholders
  • Plan around inevitable changes that occur throughout the product development process

Product management includes everything from product development and product marketing to product strategy and task prioritization.

In contrast, project management focuses on individual projects and tasks. A project management tool can help you tackle product user stories (which is an Agile term for feature request) for a single project.

But one product could have multiple projects throughout its life cycle. A project management solution lets you manage the whole product portfolio.

Even though they’re big picture people, product managers don’t get to just sit in their offices with steepled fingers dictating the product vision while someone else carries out the plan.

Part of being a successful product manager is working with stakeholders, communicating with multiple teams, and keeping everyone on (and excited about) the same page.

As a result, product managers spend most of their time in meetings.

The role relies as much on strong communication as on anything else (which is why it’s so important to have a roadmapping tool which allows you to showcase, visually and simply, the plan you’ve made).

Product management tools can’t replace a great product manager, but they can help make your job easier. They help you design a product roadmap, communicate it with each team and stakeholder involved, gather user feedback and product analytics. All this while also tracking performance and progress toward goals.

But which product management solution is right for your business?

What an excellent question!

Let’s dive in.

Leading product management tools

These are some of the most popular product management tools on the market today.

For roadmapping and workflow: monday.com

Monday.com for roadmapping and workflow

What we offer:

monday.com offers powerful product management software that helps product managers plan out the entire lifecycle of their product, from brainstorming and development to marketing and depreciation.

With monday.com’s product roadmap template, for instance, product managers can get a single view of all of the targets their team wants to reach, all of the tasks involved in meeting those targets, and the timelines for accomplishing them.

The product roadmap template can help each of your product teams (from brainstorming to dev, marketing, sales, and support) understand their responsibilities and hold each other accountable. It’s also completely customizable, enabling your business to set it up in whatever way you work best.

Why you need it: 

80% of product and customer service teams use different applications to do their work. Getting both to use the same virtual roadmap can help reduce miscommunication and keep teams working together.

How much it costs:

$8 – $16 per user per month

For collaboration: Slack

Slack for collaboration

What they offer:

Slack is one of the best-known collaboration tools for teams.

The application serves as an instant-messaging client for businesses, letting teams create chat rooms or send messages directly to each other, regardless of where they’re located.

It also allows for screen-sharing and video chat, making it an all-in-one collaboration tool.

Why you need it: 

Slack makes communicating much easier. Teams that implement Slack cut the number of meetings they hold by as much as 25.1% and reduce emails sent by nearly 50%, leaving more time for other activities.

How much it costs:

$6.67+ per user per month

For analytics: Qualtrics

Qualtrics for analytics

What they offer: 

Qualtrics is one of the leaders in helping product managers gather customer feedback on their products. Its tools also help analyze market trends and keep track of the competition.

By providing this analysis and feedback in real-time, Qualtrics can help product managers respond to the feedback quickly.

Qualtrics also uses predictive intelligence to automatically prioritize tasks based on customer feedback, taking some of the load off product managers.

Why you need it: 

90% of online business customers read reviews before making a purchase and 88% of those reviewers give online reviews the same credence as a personal recommendation from a friend.

Customer feedback has a huge influence on other customers, so tools like Qualtrics can help you receive and analyze that feedback.

You can then implement that feedback into your product to better serve your customers, which can generate more positive customer reviews.

How much it costs: 

Pricing not listed

For prototyping: Adobe XD

Adobe XD for prototyping

What they offer: 

Adobe XD is a tool for building user interfaces and user experiences. You can quickly build a prototype of your product to see how customers will interact with it.

It’s also built with collaboration in mind so a full team can work on the same product easily.

Why you need it: 

Prototyping lets you iterate on design ideas quickly. It also lets you identify issues that your product’s users might run into before you make changes to your product live, improving the user experience.

How much it costs: 

Free trial. $22.99 per month per user.

Product management templates

To get started managing your product management team’s current and future products — from brainstorming and creation to going live and updating — try these three templates from monday.com’s product management library:

#1: The product roadmap template

The product roadmap template is great for any product manager that wants a visual look at a high-level overview of their product plan. This can help product managers see where their product has been and where it’s going.

how to create a software product roadmap

It also helps them break down each product planning goal into individual project tasks and to see how those tasks fit together.

The template lets product managers assign specific tasks to team members, which makes it easy for everyone on the team to know what they are responsible for.

Customizable views lets product managers see all of the tasks assigned to an individual or to a single team, which can help with dividing work equitably.

#2. The team task management template

The team task management template can help product managers keep their team on-task and working toward their product’s overall goal.

This template lets managers prioritize individual tasks and assign them to team members. It also has an easy to use dashboard.

Product managers can use it to keep an eye on everyone’s progress and flag people or work that are falling behind.

Team Tasks from Monday.com

#3. The feature backlog template

The feature backlog template helps product managers keep track of the features they intend to add to their products.

Managers can easily add new features to the product backlog or assign features to teams for active development:

This template lets you track and prioritize your product and sprint backlogs so your team is always working on the right features, and no product requirements fall off the map.

Feature Backlog template from Monday.com

Conclusion

Good product management software can help product managers learn more about their own products as well as the competition.

They can also help those managers gather customer insights and use those insights to devise a long-term roadmap for their products.

To see how monday.com can help your business plan for the future with product management, get rolling with one of our customizable templates today.

how to create a software product roadmap

Try our Product Roadmap template now!

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