Earlier this week, I spoke with Zenan Liu, Head of Product at StashAway, about how they hire Product Managers. For those who don’t know, StashAway (founded in late 2016) is a data-driven digital wealth management platform that personalises financial planning and portfolio management for both retail and accredited investors. They’re located in Singapore and operate out of the WeWork office on Beach Road.
What StashAway is looking for
As a young company, they have a lean Product team that focuses on all aspects of the product: external facing experiences, internal tools, and security processes. StashAway hires Product Managers from a variety of backgrounds — from design to computer science to information systems.
Zenan has defined a set of traits that he looks for in Product Managers. Specifically:
- Customer centricity: Do they stand in the customer’s shoes and act as the customer’s voice at all times? Often times that means doing the right thing for our customers, not the easiest.
- Empathy: Do they show empathy towards both end users and internal stakeholders? A good PM candidate should be able to understand pain points and needs from multiple angles to come up with an appropriate solution for the problem.
- Product mindset: Can they solve problems effectively? Critical thinking skills, good intuition and common sense are essential to perform well in a PM position
- Curiosity: Are they interested in understanding the “why” for every “what”? Discovering the right problem to solve is usually more important than solving the problem itself.
- Attention to detail: Are they able to execute well? Successful product delivery requires obsessive attention to detail, such as working out the edge cases and tying up loose ends.
The StashAway Product Interview Process
StashAway has a five step interview process that has a lot of crossover from how other Startups companies hire Product Managers. However unlike other Product companies, StashAway does ask Product Managers to put together a Portfolio to showcase the different sets of products and features that PMs have shipped in the past.
The five step process:
- Portfolio Review
- Initial Phone Screen with HR
- In-Person interview with the Head of Product
- Design Challenge to assess the candidate’s problem solving skills
- Meeting with a few stakeholders (design, tech, marketing, etc) and the Co-Founders to determine culture and team fit
Candidates can expect to answer questions like:
- Tell me about a project you’re proud of.
- What’s your favorite product or app and why?
- Have you faced any problems while working with developers? How do you solve it?
Zenan’s tips for first time PM Interviewees
- Firstly, they should research the company, understand the business, and think of how they can improve the product.
- Secondly, they should be ready to give detailed answers on what they’ve shipped in the past and what the impact to the business was.
- Finally, Zenan believes that the Product interview “is also a great opportunity for the candidate to evaluate the company. Always ask questions to understand more about the culture, process, and what type of day-to-day work to expect.”
StashAway is Hiring!
While StashAway doesn’t have Product roles open at the moment. They are hiring an Entrepreneur-in-Residence in Malaysia for fresh graduates. This is a 1.5 year programme with a focus on Operations, Business Intelligence and Compliance. The EIR will be able to learn all aspects surrounding customer-centricity, financial and compliance operations, people, culture and leadership responsibilities.
They are also hiring a couple tech roles! Learn more about StashAway’s culture and career opportunities here: https://www.stashaway.sg/careers
Special thanks to: Zenan Liu, Head of Product @ StashAway