IT Product Owner

  • STARR Insurance Companies
  • Atlanta, GA

Job Description

Starr Insurance Companies is a leading insurance and investment organization, providing commercial property and casualty insurance, including travel and accident coverage, to almost every imaginable business and industry in virtually every part of the world.

Cornelius Vander Starr established his first insurance company in Shanghai, China in 1919. Today, we are one of the world’s fastest growing insurance organizations, capable of writing in 128 countries on 6 continents.

Starr Companies is seeking an experienced Product Owner with P&C Insurance and IT background. This position will report to the Senior Director of Information Technology.

The Product Owner will lead a team responsible for supporting our business users and integrations that use our Commercial Auto Policy Admin system. The candidate will lead an Agile-structured team of analysts and developers, overseeing the day-to-day activities and managing ad hoc platform enhancement projects. They will combine exceptional management, strategic thinking and communication skills to manage complex initiatives from inception through to completion. The role will work closely with stakeholders, internal support teams, and vendor partners to gather product requirements, prioritize work efforts, manage risk/issues, and drive the overall delivery of the product work stream. This is a high visibility role that involves being the point of coordination and escalation for the Commercial Auto Policy Administration system, and will be expected to be hands-on, leading by example and providing exceptional service.

Key Responsibilities

Product Support

  • Manage a team of direct reports and contingent workers for day-to-day application support and ad hoc product enhancements (projects)
  • Collaborate with Stakeholders to understand the business roadmap, and then translate that into a product backlog
  • Manage the product backlog to prioritize, refine, schedule for development, and deploy to the satisfaction of the stakeholders
  • Establish KPIs to monitor, measure, and report on software quality and delivery performance. Utilize KPI performance to identify opportunities for improvement
  • Support annual audit and governance requirements and enforcing compliance
  • Plan, schedule and communicate release plans and set expectations for delivery of new capabilities, features, and functionalities.
  • Actively manage issues, risks and dependencies for assigned project/program in order to meet objectives/deliverables, escalate appropriately
  • Provide vision and direction to the team and stakeholders throughout the product life cycle, ensuring alignment with business objectives
  • Manage project costs and ensure overall program is within approved budget

Vendor Relationship

  • Partner with 3rd Party Solution Providers and Vendors to ensure delivery objectives and organizational priorities are known, understood, and met. Maintain relationships to ensure issues are quickly identified, analyzed and remediated to avoid adverse impact to business partners.
  • Review and approve technical specifications from vendors, review with internal parties to ensure understanding and agreement. Resolve any issues/ concerns prior to obtaining signoff.
  • Maintain collaborative and proactive relationships with vendor account managers. Define and execute strategic roadmaps for continuous improvement to the support model.
  • Stay abreast of new features/functionality of the current system and what is available in the market (third party products/services)
  • Provide weekly, quarterly and annual status reports to management and Project Management Office
  • Manage the vendor relationship, including defining and managing Statements of Work, budgeting and invoicing, vendor performance and quality targets, vendor status reporting.
  • Communicate with key stakeholders ensure development goals and priorities are clear and aligned with business objectives
  • Lead/participate in agile/scrum activities such as sprint planning, daily standups, demos and retrospectives as needed for internal development
  • Assist the Scrum Master with mitigating impediments impacting successful completion of a sprint

Leadership & Communication

  • Effectively communicate problems and resolutions verbally and in writing with all levels, from team members, business users, management and external vendors
  • Ensure that all internal and external customer interactions are handled professionally by maintaining the highest level of service, follow-through and consistently keeping commitments
  • Lead and provide direct oversight for a team of highly responsive professionals with a strong focus on client satisfaction
  • Instill an inclusive team culture and empower, challenge and coach team members
  • Support professional development by conducting staff appraisals and ensuring continuous development plans are followed
  • Coordinate and interact with IT Peers to ensure project-level impact points and dependencies are known and managed

Skills/Experience Required:

  • Bachelor's Degree or equivalent (5+ years IT Team management experience)
  • 5+ years of experience in P&C Commercial Policy Admin is a must
  • 5+ years of relevant experience or equivalent as an IT Product Owner/Project Manager
  • Demonstrated knowledge of industry-wide development software, frameworks and processes, development methodologies (Agile, Waterfall, etc.) and best practices
  • Experience working in an Agile/Scrum work environment. Agile Product Owner certification or equivalent is a plus
  • Experience working with third party vendors, offshore staffing vendors, contract/SOW negotiations
  • Demonstrated business and technology related acumen
  • Strategic, tactical, and critical thinking expertise; ability to break down complex problems and formulate executable project plans
  • Excellent verbal, and written presentation/communication skills
  • Competency in product owner tools and basic office programs (MS Office suite, MS Project, MS Azure DevOps, Jira)


Starr is an equal opportunity employer, which means we'll consider all suitably qualified applicants regardless of gender identity or expression, ethnic origin, nationality, religion or beliefs, age, sexual orientation, disability status or any other protected characteristic. We recruit and develop our people based on merit and we're committed to creating an inclusive environment for all employees. We offer first class training and development opportunities to all employees. Our aim is to grow our own talent and bring out the best in people.

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