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Delivery Lead vs. product owner: What Are the Differences?

Learn about the two careers and review some of the similarities and differences between them.

In the business world, there are many different types of leaders. Two common roles are that of a delivery lead and product owner. Though both positions are responsible for overseeing projects, there are several key differences between them.

In this article, we discuss the differences between a delivery lead and product owner, and we provide tips for those interested in pursuing a leadership role in either field.

What is a Delivery Lead?

A Delivery Lead is responsible for ensuring that a software development team meets deadlines and produces a high-quality product. They work with the product owner to create a product roadmap and schedule. They also work with developers to create estimates for how long each task will take. Delivery Leads track the team’s progress and report any risks or issues to the product owner. They also help the team to resolve any blockers. Delivery Leads may also be responsible for managing a budget and ensuring that the team sticks to it.

What is a Product Owner?

The product owner is responsible for the product roadmap and ensuring that the product meets the needs of the customer. They work with the development team to ensure that the product is being built correctly and efficiently. The product owner is the voice of the customer and works to ensure that their needs are being met by the product.

Delivery Lead vs. Product Owner

Here are the main differences between a delivery lead and a product owner.

Job Duties

A product owner’s job duties can vary depending on the company and the product they manage. They might be responsible for creating, revising and prioritizing features for the product. A product owners may also communicate with stakeholders to understand their needs and communicate them to the team. Finally, product owners often monitor the performance of the product to identify areas for improvement.

Delivery leads are also tasked with leading a team to deliver products to customers. This involves defining clear goals for the team and monitoring progress to ensure deadlines are met. Delivery leads may also work closely with other departments, such as operations and engineering, to resolve issues that affect delivery.

Job Requirements

The job requirements for a delivery lead and product owner vary depending on the company they work for. However, most delivery leads and product owners have at least a bachelor’s degree in business administration or another related field. Additionally, many delivery leads and product owners have experience working in project management, product development or software development. Some companies also require delivery leads and product owners to have a master’s degree or certification in project management.

Work Environment

Delivery leads and product owners typically work in different environments. Delivery leads often work in an office setting, where they can collaborate with other team members to develop a plan for the next project. They may also travel to meet with clients or attend meetings with executives.

Product owners usually work from home or in small offices. They spend most of their time working on their own projects, but they may need to communicate with delivery leads about updates or changes.


Both delivery leads and product owners need to have excellent communication skills. They both interact with other members of their team, as well as stakeholders from other departments, on a regular basis. They need to be able to clearly articulate their vision for a project and provide updates on its progress.

Delivery leads also need to have strong organizational skills. They need to be able to keep track of multiple projects at once and ensure that each one is progressing according to schedule. Product owners need to have strong decision-making skills. They need to be able to prioritize features and functionality based on customer needs and business objectives.

One key difference between delivery leads and product owners is that delivery leads are typically more focused on the technical aspects of a project, while product owners are more focused on the business side. Delivery leads need to have a deep understanding of the technology being used in a project and how it can be leveraged to achieve the desired outcome. Product owners need to have a deep understanding of the customer base and the market landscape.


The average salary for a delivery lead is $99,595 per year, while the average salary for a product owner is $108,042 per year. Both of these roles may see their salaries vary depending on the type of work they’re doing, their location and their experience level. Both types of professionals may earn other benefits as part of their compensation package.


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