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Product Owner-Digital Lending At BMO Financial Group

Location: Chicago, Illinois

Job Description

The Product Owner – Digital Lending is accountable for the overall leadership of the Business Express Lending scrum team, including the definition of the scrum vision. The Product Owner is accountable to maximize the value of the build and the work of the development team by ensuring that the development team understands the objectives, Product Backlog items and priorities to drive digital lending at the bank. This job will provide the strategic product and sales direction that enables the development team to focus on what matters in an iterative manner to drive high quality output. The Product Owner will champion the customer perspective and ensure that customer insights drive both the overall customer experience definition as well as the prioritization of sub-components within. They are responsible for ensuring that the final design delivers a truly great customer experience in order to bring more customers to the bank. This role will have leadership responsibilities and will serve as a change manager within the organization as well as facilitate the education and transition of the teams into Agile.

The Product Owner is accountable for developing and managing relationships with key stakeholders across the enterprise (T&O, CSA’s, business partners, etc.) and will be a key participant in governance meetings.

The Product Owner operates within a Scrum framework that allows scrum development team members to address complex adaptive problems, while productively and creatively delivering products of the highest possible value. As such, the Product Owner has respect for the development team’s contribution to the product vision and how the team members decide the requirements will be met.

Scrum Teams are self-organizing and cross-functional. Self-organizing teams choose how best to accomplish their work, rather than being directed by others outside the team. Cross-functional teams have all competencies needed to accomplish the work without depending on others not part of the team. The team model in Scrum is designed to optimize flexibility, creativity, and productivity. Scrum Teams deliver products iteratively and incrementally, maximizing opportunities for feedback. Incremental deliveries of “Done” product ensure a potentially useful version of working product is always available.

Being BMO is how the Product Owner accomplishes their goals and the goals of the team. In some cases, business team scrum members will report to the Product Owner.

Key Accountabilities

Managerial Leadership
  • Manage your team effectively by building short, medium and long-term operating plans to achieve the business goals; make revisions to plan as necessary to deliver exceptional results
  • Know your business and understand the work to simplify work processes and improve productivity within your team while maintaining focus on the customer; support effective relationships across work groups to eliminate road blocks and drive greater results; solicit feedback from employees about improvement opportunities and other changes that will add value to the business
  • Manage the day to day activities of your team effectively to maximize performance and output, and build a high-performing team; set and communicate clear goals for employees; coach and provide performance feedback to hold employees accountable for the outcomes they achieve and how they achieve them; apply BMO’s performance management approach with employees including building development plans and recommending changes to base and variable pay
  • Attract, develop and move talent across BMO to support the achievement of business goals and employees’ career goals; build a culture that motivates employees to do their best work
  • Perform required regulatory & risk oversight and governance for your business group/function; identify, manage and mitigate current and emerging risks; support the development of a risk management mindset in all employees
  • Provide feedback as requested to BMO managers about the contribution of scrum team members to the development of the product build

Relationship Management
  • Manage relationships with key stakeholders across BMO through committee meetings and planned meetings to ensure that BMO leaders understand the vision and development plan
  • Work with committee members to define the key goals for the scrum to provide the basis for decision making on prioritization and investments; bring forward any issue or challenge that requires committee review for discussion to ensure alignment with leaders

Agile Leadership
  • Act as an ambassador for the adoption of the agile mindset and associated behaviour changes to help ensure meaningful change that drives positive business results
  • Challenge the status quo on how and what we do at BMO to support a more effective and productive operating model

Accountabilities Within the Scrum Process

Product Backlog Development
  • Maximize the return on investment of the product/build and the Development Team
  • Define the requirements for the development team via the Product Backlog; the Product Backlog lists all features, functions, requirements, enhancements, and fixes that constitute the changes to be made to the product in future releases
  • Identify the product vision and develop the appropriate product backlog items to support the delivery of the highest quality product possible
  • Refine accordingly based on changing strategies and customer needs

Sprint Planning
  • Share the objectives that the Sprint should achieve and the Product Backlog items that, if completed in the Sprint, would achieve the Sprint Goal during the Spring Planning Process

  • Manage the Product Backlog to ensure that the development team focuses on what drives the most value, including but not limited to:
    • Clearly expressing Product Backlog items;
    • Ordering the items in the Product Backlog to best achieve goals and missions;
    • Optimizing the value of the work the Development Team performs;
    • Ensuring that the Product Backlog is visible, transparent, and clear to all, and shows what the Scrum Team will work on next;
    • Ensuring the Development Team understands items in the Product Backlog to the level needed; and,
    • Clarifying scope, make trade-offs and negotiating any changes to the Product Backlog based on new information.

Sprint Review
  • Support an effective Sprint Review process by explaining what Product Backlog items have been “done” and what has not been “done”, discussing the Product Backlog as it stands and projecting likely completion dates if required
  • Review how the marketplace or potential use of the product might have changed what is the most valuable thing to do next
  • Review the timeline, budget, potential capabilities, and marketplace for the next anticipated release of the product
  • Revise the Product Backlog that defines the probable Product Backlog items for the next Sprint
  • Track the total work remaining at least every Sprint Review to compare the amount of work remaining to previous Sprints
  • Assess progress toward completing project work by the desired time for the goal and share information to all stakeholders

Risk Management
  • Maintain clear understanding and current knowledge of competitive marketplace and trends and ensure all products meet regulatory requirements and adhere to internal risk management standards.


  • University education and/or minimum of 5 years’ experience with the business drivers/customer experience for the designated product/build, specifically business or retail lending processes, policies and models.
  • In-depth knowledge of scrum framework

  • Able to translate business strategy and customer drivers into clear product requirements
  • In-depth influence skills
  • Expert communication skills
  • In-depth strategic planning skills

We’re here to help
At BMO Harris Bank we have a shared purpose; we put the customer at the center of everything we do – helping people is in our DNA. For 200 years we have thought about the future—the future of our customers, our communities and our people. We help our customers and our communities by working together, innovating and pushing boundaries to bring them our very best every day. Together we’re changing the way people think about a bank.
As a member of the BMO Harris Bank team you are valued, respected and heard, and you have more ways to grow and make an impact. We strive to help you make an impact from day one – for yourself and our customers. We’ll support you with the tools and resources you need to reach new milestones, as you help our customers reach theirs. From in-depth training and coaching, to manager support and network-building opportunities, we’ll help you gain valuable experience, and broaden your skillset.
To find out more visit us at
BMO Harris Bank is committed to an inclusive, equitable and accessible workplace. By learning from each other’s differences, we gain strength through our people and our perspectives. BMO Harris Bank N.A. is an equal opportunity/affirmative action employer. All qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to sex, gender identity, sexual orientation, race, color, religion, national origin, disability, protected Veteran status, age, or any other characteristic protected by law. Accommodations are available on request for candidates taking part in all aspects of the selection process. To request accommodation, please contact your recruiter.



Investment Solutions

Primary Location

United States-Illinois-Chicago


US Personal & Business Banking-X000004



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