Senior Product Manager - Digital Portfolio Strategy Lead


We are very flexible with working schedules. For many positions, it is possible to work part-time hours at the expense of pay. All jobs which are marked as "part-time" allow you to choose how many hours you would like to work.

Posted 1 week ago

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MoD Corsham or MoD Main Building, London with hybrid working

About the job

Job summary

Defence Digital is revolutionising the way that the Ministry of Defence delivers digital services to users, and we need capable product people who can bring strong product thinking and expertise to help us get there.

About Defence Digital- who are we? We provide digital and technology services to our Armed Forces, ensuring they can operate securely via radio, satellite, and the internet. Operating at scale, with an annual budget in excess of £2Bn and a diverse team of 2,500 colleagues, we're aiming to make our Armed Forces some of the most technologically advanced in the world.

This position is advertised at 37 hours per week.

Job description

This role will have responsibility for development and maintenance of the Digital Portfolio Strategy, ensuring that we are able to articulate how the work we deliver contributes to the achievement of our Strategic Aims. This covers the full breadth of the Function Portfolio (Digital Portfolio across the entirety of Defence) and will help to drive cohesion across it.  The Portfolio Strategy will communicate a succinct description of the vision and objectives for the Portfolio, and the means by which they will be achieved.

The Senior Product Manager (Digital Portfolio Strategy Lead) will be responsible for ensuring that there is a clear, agreed approach to categorisation of the portfolio and prioritisation of demand. The Portfolio Strategy will include the vision, objectives of the Portfolio, and overview of the strategic priorities and senior leader level information regarding benefits. It will include key strategic risks, dates, measures and success factors.

You will work across the portfolio team to ensure that there is appropriate performance management in place to support conversations across the functional portfolio and you will also be responsible for the twice-yearly portfolio strategy board, which will review longer term portfolio plans to ensure strategic alignment, identifying and managing key dependencies across the functional portfolio.

Responsibilities will include:

  • Develop the Portfolio level Strategy and Plan communicating succinct description of the vision and objectives of the Portfolio and the means by which these will be achieved
  • Cross Defence Digital Portfolio Team stakeholder engagement will be required to ensure the Strategy reflectshow we work as a collective Portfolio
  • Overview of Strategic prioritiesand identification and management of Key dates, measures and success factors including risks
  • Top level benefits to be realised and how they link to the strategic objectives and priorities
  • Lead on categorisation of the Portfolio
  • Ensure that the Portfolio is balanced and manage the prioritisation of the Portfolio developing multi-criteria analysis
  • Use analysis to understand now and future planned demand to ensure the Strategy is accurate for future years
  • Identify and manage critical dependencies across the Portfolio; both across wider Defence, as well as within Defence Digital Delivery.

Person specification

Senior Product Managers manage multiple products or a single product that is especially complex, high risk or sensitive.

As a Product Manager, you will:

  • Line-manage associate product managers and product managers
  • Have expert product management skills
  • (May) be involved in elements of programme management activity
  • (May) be involved in hiring associates, product managers and contractors.

This job role is suitable for hybrid working, which is an informal, non-contractual and voluntary arrangement, blending a balance of attendance in the workplace (your permanent duty station) and working from home as a personal choice.  If you are successful, any opportunities for hybrid working will be discussed with you prior to you taking up your post.

The successful candidate is required to carry out all their duties from a UK location and cannot do so from an overseas location at any time.


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

  • Leadership
  • Seeing the Big Picture

Technical skills

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

  • Product ownership
  • Problem ownership
  • Strategic ownership
  • User focus


  • An environment with flexible working options
  • A culture encouraging inclusion and diversity.
  • 25 days annual leave rising (1 day per year) to 30 days upon completion of 5 years’ service.
  • Ability to roll over up to 10 days annual leave per year.
  • In addition to 8 public holidays per year you will also receive leave for HM The King’s birthday
  • Minimum of 15 Days Special Leave in a rolling 12-month period to volunteer for military or emergency service reserve commitments.
  • Special Paid Leave for volunteering up to 6 days a year.
  • Enhanced maternity, paternity and adoption leave
  • Employee Assistance Programme to support your wellbeing.
  • Most sites have good travel links with free car parking; many also have other facilities such as a Sports & Social Club and Gyms
  • A highly competitive pension scheme.
  • Additionally, please see the attached Benefits Leaflet

Learning & Development

In Defence Digital we have a strong learning and development ethos, supporting you to fulfil your potential by providing –

  • Learning and development tailored to your role
  • Professional and Personal Development of skills
  • Access to thousands of training courses through Civil Service Learning, some free or paid by MOD
  • Ability to obtain industry recognised qualifications supported by MOD

Our unparalleled learning and development opportunities allow you not only to progress in your career with us, but to gain transferable skills that allow you to apply your expertise across the Ministry of Defence and other government departments.

This post does not offer any assistance with relocation allowances. External recruits who join the MOD who are new to the Civil Service will be subject to a six month probation period.

The Ministry of Defence is committed to providing a safe and healthy working environment for its staff which includes educating them on the benefits of not smoking, protecting them from the harmful effects of second-hand smoke and supporting those who want to give up smoking. Under the Smoke-Free Working Environment policy, Smoking and the use of all tobacco products (including combustible and chewing tobacco products) will not be permitted anywhere in the Defence working environment by 31st December 2022. The policy is Whole Force and includes all Defence personnel, contractors, visitors and other non-MOD personnel. All applicants seeking, considering, or accepting employment with the Ministry of Defence should be aware of this policy and that it is already in place at a number of Defence Establishments.

Things you need to know

Selection process details

This vacancy is using Success Profiles, and will assess your Behaviours, Experience and Technical skills.


To apply, please complete the CV and personal statement template provided on the CS Jobs dashboard. Your statement will be read by the recruiting line manager, so it is essential that your statement includes evidence of the following criteria and is no more than 1250 words.

Each of the criteria has been identified by the manager as being important in this role and for that reason each one of the following will be scored 1-7 and make up part of your overall score to assess your suitability to be invited to interview:

  • Previous experience of developing Portfolio level Strategy and plans, or equivalent
  • Experience of working within constraints. Ability to work with and challenge senior stakeholders. know how to prioritise and mitigate constraints and turn them into an advantage
  • Have experience of Product ownership, ability to start to define and create approaches and to coach others. Implement new ways of working, maintain an awareness of what other sectors are doing. You understand what is most important and applicable
  • Have strong understanding of Strategic ownership, with the knowledge of how to get buy-in from the organisation. Ability to work with scant information.

Interview & Presentation:

We’ll assess you against these behaviours & technical experience during the interview process:


  • Leadership
  • Seeing the Big Picture

Technical skills:

  • Product ownership
  • Problem ownership
  • Strategic ownership
  • User focus


In addition to the interview, you will be required to present for 5 minutes on a topic related to the role. The topic of the presentation will be sent to you at least 24 hours before the interview

Defence Digital operates an organisation model in which every individual belongs to a Government Profession. The successful applicant will be posted into one of the defined Government Professions on Standard Terms of Reference for the grade. Defence Digital reserves the right to move individuals between roles, within their allocated profession, to meet the needs of the business and in support of agile resourcing.

Within Defence Digital each profession is led by a Professional Head of Community who will lead professional development and support the Continuous Professional Development path for their group.

Defence Digital is currently going through a Transformation Programme which aims to ensure we have the right workforce, with the right skills, to deliver the MOD's Digital Strategy. As the programme progresses, Defence Digital staff may be required to undergo an assessment to understand and develop their upskilling needs to support the delivery of this strategy. This post may be impacted by Transformation as the programme progresses.

Our people are at the heart of everything we do at Defence Digital. It’s vital that our workforce reflects the diversity of both our audience and the wider society in the UK, so we’re proud to be an equal opportunities employer, and we actively seek candidates from a diverse set of backgrounds and communities. We also recognise the importance of a good work life balance, so we do everything we can to accommodate flexible working, including part-time and job shares for all our roles. Please let us know in your application or at any stage throughout the process if this is something you want to explore.

As a result of the changes to the UK immigration rules which came into effect on 1 January 2021, the Ministry of Defence will only offer sponsorship for a skilled worker visa under the points-based system, where a role has been deemed to be business critical.

The role currently being advertised has not been assessed as business critical and is therefore NOT open to applications from those who will require sponsorship under the points-based system. Should you apply for this role and be found to require sponsorship, your application will be rejected, and any provisional offer of employment withdrawn.

The Civil Service embraces diversity and promotes equality of opportunity. There is a Disability Confident Scheme (DCS) for candidates with disabilities who meet the minimum selection criteria.

If you need to advise us that you need additional help or reasonable adjustments for the recruitment process, please contact: [email protected]

MOD Recruitment Satisfaction Survey – we may contact you regarding your experience to help us improve our customer satisfaction. The survey is voluntary and anonymous. You may however be given the opportunity to provide additional information to help us improve our service which includes the collection of some personal data as defined by the United Kingdom General Data Protection Regulation (UK GDPR). The MOD Privacy Notice sets out how we will use your personal data and your rights.

Any move to MOD from another employer will mean you can no longer access childcare vouchers. This includes moves between government departments. You may however be eligible for other government schemes, including Tax-Free Childcare. Determine your eligibility at

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


Successful candidates must meet the security requirements before they can be appointed. The level of security needed is security check.

See our vetting charter.

People working with government assets must complete basic personnel security standard checks.

Nationality requirements

This job is broadly open to the following groups:

  • UK nationals
  • nationals of Commonwealth countries who have the right to work in the UK
  • nationals of the Republic of Ireland
  • nationals from the EU, EEA or Switzerland with settled or pre-settled status or who apply for either status by the deadline of the European Union Settlement Scheme (EUSS)
  • relevant EU, EEA, Swiss or Turkish nationals working in the Civil Service
  • relevant EU, EEA, Swiss or Turkish nationals who have built up the right to work in the Civil Service
  • certain family members of the relevant EU, EEA, Swiss or Turkish nationals

Further information on nationality requirements

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 equal opportunities. As such, we run a Disability Confident Scheme (DCS) for candidates with disabilities who meet the minimum selection criteria.

The Civil Service also offers a Redeployment Interview Scheme to civil servants who are at risk of redundancy, and who meet the minimum requirements for the advertised vacancy.

Apply for job
many locations (UK) only

If you're not eligible to work from the many locations (UK), you'll be automatically rejected

The UK Civil Service implements the policy of the Government of the day and delivers crucial public services.

Our Working Week

We are very flexible with working schedules. For many positions, it is possible to work part-time hours at the expense of pay. All jobs which are marked as "part-time" allow you to choose how many hours you would like to work.

Our 4 day week = any day off

Our Vacation Policy

We offer a generous annual leave allowance (typically 25-30 days per year for full time staff) plus public holidays. If you work a 4 day week (30hrs), you can expect:

  • 28 days PTO
  • 52 unpaid days
  • 80 days off per year

Our Remote Working Policy

Our team works hybrid remotely throughout the UK. For some roles, 100% remote working is possible - please check the job description for more details.

Our Employee Benefits

  • 401(k) company contribution
  • Transparent Salaries
  • Flexible working hours
  • Generous parental leave
  • Childcare support
  • Equipment allowance

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