Here at the FT, gold-standard journalism is just the beginning. 500-people strong, our Product & Tech team keeps us ahead of the ever-changing digital landscape by delivering cutting-edge products to over one million digital subscribers every day. Our plans for growth rely on a diverse, dedicated and dynamic group of product, tech, delivery and data specialists - everyone’s welcome in this friendly, forward-thinking team. And with entrepreneurial spirit, intelligence and opportunity at every turn, there’s no limits to where your FT career will take you.
Our commitment to diversity and inclusion in the workplace
At the FT, we aim for employees across all regions to have a voice so that diverse perspectives are heard and valued. We believe that a supportive workplace is one where employees feel they can be themselves at work and have the flexibility they need to meet their personal needs. We'll continue to remove barriers for all, and in particular barriers facing employees from underrepresented groups.
Overview of the role and team structure
We’re looking for a Design Manager to join the Product Design team in our London Office.
You’ll lead and line manage the FT.com & Apps design team of 6 designers. Your team work across FT.com, our iOS and Android apps, and FT Edit, plus various other new consumer journalism products we’re experimenting with.
You’ll partner with our other Design and Research Managers — who oversee design and research across all of our teams — to upskill our team, guard our excellent team culture, make us more efficient, and ensure we deliver quality experiences across the entire portfolio.
You’ll work with other team leads from Product Management, Engineering, Research and Delivery to input into product strategy, inform OKRs and product approach, plan and manage team workloads, and ultimately be accountable for all design activities and outputs.
You’ll receive regular guidance and support from your line manager, our Director of Product Design. We work hard to foster a safe environment where we share and discuss our work proactively, to inspire, support and guide each other.
Your team work in fully empowered squads of engineers, researchers, product managers, with support from and access to relevant stakeholders from around the FT such as editorial, marketing, finance, etc. They deliver end-to-end product experiences, from exploratory research into opportunity definition, from ideation into concepting, from testing into shipping, measuring and iterating.
What you’ll be doing
Month to month, you’ll be:
- Managing and developing your team. Conducting regular 1:1s, leading and participating in team meetings. Helping your team plan their careers and develop their skills. Planning for team growth and succession, recruiting and onboarding new team members.
- Coaching, mentoring, and improving our capabilities. Improving our design processes. offering support, guidance and mentorship to the team, encouraging peer-to-peer critique and sharing. Working with senior Product Design Team members to maintain and improve quality of life for our team members.
- Understanding and inputting into product strategy. Working with Product Directors to understand and plan around current and future initiatives, and deploying your team to maximum effect.
- Helping to establish and consolidate our global design approach and systems. Pairing with our other Design Managers to establish, enhance and consolidate our team principles, processes and vision.
- Growing the impact of the team’s capabilities. Working closely with the Director of Product Design and your Design and Research peers, to extend the impact of Product Design and Research across the FT.
- Evolving! We strive to continually improve and evolve. Evolving our process by adding new techniques and abandoning obsolete ones. Evolving our product until we achieve objectives, rather than stopping once we’ve shipped.
What we’re looking for from you
- We welcome applications from people who can demonstrate strong design management competencies. You’ll have managed designers for multiple years, and been involved in hiring and career progression for your direct reports.
- We’d like to see things which help us understand your Design Management approach and experience. This could be a portfolio, case studies, documents and processes you use with your team, or something else. Anything which helps us understand your experience and impact as a team lead and manager, rather than as an individual contributor.
- A desire to learn, and hone your skills. You’ll be surrounded by talented designers, product managers, researchers, engineers, etc. We cultivate an environment where everyone shares and learns from each other. It helps us all improve.
We have a transparent, measureable progression framework, which outlines all of the skills the FT Product Design team need, and details how to progress in each skill category. We use this as a basis for biannual reviews, where everyone self assesses against the progression framework, track progressions, and agrees areas of focus with their line manager.
We invest in our people to allow them to grow both personally and professionally whilst working at The FT. We offer a variety of ways in which you can progress your career with us, some of which are highlighted below:
- Career coaching - Career coaching is time spent focused on you and how you can achieve your career aspirations.
- Mentoring programme - The mentoring programme aims to connect people across the business to support professional and personal growth through knowledge sharing and guidance.
- Learning and development - The FT offers a host of learning and development opportunities that will not only help you build the skills you need to grow in your profession or field, but will also help you improve your own personal development, with courses such as self-coaching, productivity, presentation confidence, research techniques and much more.
What’s in it for you? FT Benefits
Our benefits vary depending on location, but we are committed to providing best in class perks across all our offices as well as an inclusive environment to develop your career. Examples of our benefits include; generous annual leave allowances, flexible working, medical cover, enhanced maternity & paternity packages and subsidised gym memberships. Full details of our benefits can be found here.
The FT are committed to providing an inclusive working environment for all. We are an equal opportunities employer who seeks to recruit and appoint the best talent regardless of age, gender, ethnicity, disability, sexual orientation, gender identity, socio-economic background, religion and/or belief. We also promote flexible working and will consider specific requests around flexibility for all roles where it can be accommodated. Please let us know if you require any adjustments as part of the application process or to enable you to attend an interview. If you would like to discuss your requirements, or have any questions, please contact a member of our HR team who will be happy to help.