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Job Clarification Question

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The person in charge of development for the publisher/developer in question (unless there happens to be a Snr VP of product development). In the UK that position would probably be Director of Product Development

Dan Marchant
Obscure Productions
Game Development & Design consultant

[edited by - obscure on November 13, 2003 3:32:05 AM]

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> Vice President ...

In Canada, the ''Vice-President'' title has a legal meaning where you can personally be held responsible for the company actions in your area; you are deemed an ''officer'' of the company. Check with a corporate lawyer.


> ... of Product Development

That can mean anything from R&D engineering to manufacturing to marketing to business development.


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Job titles like this mean wildly different things in different companies ... particularly VP titles ... because some companies give them out to half their management staff, while others only use them for the top 2-3 people in the company, also some companies have many tiers of managers, while others only have 1-2 management levels

without knowing anything about this particular company, here''s my default company model ...

Different Departments (Software, Testing, Art) have Employees, as well as a Technical Lead, or Deparment Head.

Each Project under way, usually has a Project Manager, who keeps track of the schedules, factilitates development, and manages all of the interdepartment stuff.

Each Product has someone assigned as Product Manager, which means the person in charge of the long term vision and branding of the product, this person also interacts heavily with the product sales and marketing teams.


To clarify, a "project" is usually something with defined a start and end and a schedule ... a "product" embodies 1 or more projects over a period of time, addressing a certain market need. For instance, "Unreal" and "Unreal 2" are most likely projects under the same product ... "Unreal Tournament" "UT 2003" and "UT 2004" are projects under that product ... and both products are part of the "Unreal" product line.

So back to the original question ... the VP of product developent usually Manages the Product Managers ... He (and his team of product managers) set the long term company direction, make choices about which products to drop, which to continue, and which are worthly of additional resources ... the VP of product development would be one of the people keeping his finger on the pulse of the industry, communicating with people outside of the company, and tracking the company''s priorities as a whole. Of course, that''s in the small companies I''ve been in - in larger companies, this position may actually only manage the actual schedules and duties of project managers, where his underlings are more concerned with comleting projects than deciding on them ... in these situations, there would be some other VP (perhaps Market Research or some such) who sets the priorities for the long term, and the VP of Development who''s job is to see that it gets done.

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