DIY Product Manager

Organization
EarthEnable
Location
Kigali, Rwanda, with significant time in rural villages across Rwanda
Deadline for Applications
08/30/2016
Contact Information
jobs@earthenable.org
Tags
Full-time

About EarthEnable

EarthEnable is transforming the way people live by making homes healthier for families across rural Rwanda. 80% of Rwandans live in homes with dirt floors which are dusty, unsanitary, and fertile breeding grounds for parasites and germs. While replacing a dirt floor with concrete has significant health benefits (e.g. reducing diarrhea by 50% and parasitic infections by 80%), concrete is unaffordable for many Rwandans who need it.

EarthEnable addresses this pressing and ubiquitous problem by selling high-quality, earthen floors that are 80% cheaper than concrete with 90% less embedded energy. Earthen floors are already prevalent in modern homes in the United States. Our floors are composed of natural materials (gravel, clay, sand, and murram) commonly found in Rwanda. EarthEnable trains and hires local masons to install the floors which are ultimately sealed using a proprietary drying oil that makes them waterproof, strong, and polished. In its first 20 months of operations, we have installed over 200,000 square feet of flooring and employed over 90 Rwandese staff.

The Role

In order to better reach lower-income customers, EarthEnable is currently piloting a do-it-yourself (DIY) version of the floor which can sell for much cheaper than the full service product since it avoids the cost of employing a professional mason to install the floor. Under the DIY process, customers are first trained by an EarthEnable mason on how to build the floor. After the training, we provide these customers with the equipment, materials, and ongoing advice they need to build the floor themselves.

The DIY Product Manager has the chance to incorporate the lessons we have learned thus far about the DIY product and bring it to scale across Rwanda. This role, then, provides a unique opportunity to own the marketing and operational strategies for an innovative new product that has the potential to radically improve millions of lives.

Key responsibilities include:

  • Conducting regular market research and testing with base of the pyramid customers to understand their needs and aspirations, especially as they relate to having a better floor
  • Crafting a comprehensive marketing strategy that gets customers excited about DIY while also thoughtfully integrating with the full-service marketing strategy
  • Working closely with full-service product management to coordinate operations and use of common company resources (e.g. vehicles, masons)
  • Developing a scalable business model for DIY distribution and training
  • Actively managing the P&L for the DIY product, including hitting key targets and constantly assessing pricing and COGS as we scale
  • Performing back-of-the-envelope and detailed analyses of DIY performance, financials, and business model scenarios
  • Setting up cost-effective processes for following up with customers and collecting their feedback
  • Designing and establishing easy-to-use systems for implementing the business model and for tracking key pieces of data (e.g. sand inventory levels, equipment usage, varnish needs, etc.)
  • Growing and developing the DIY product team

Qualifications

We are looking for experienced candidates with a mix of entrepreneurial, marketing, strategy, and operational experiences. This could be an excellent role for someone with business experience looking to transition to international development and social enterprise or for someone with international development experience looking to try a more private-sector approach.

Key qualifications are:

  • At least 2 years of experience in marketing, management consulting, product management, or social enterprise operations with a successful record of implementation
  • Desire to live and work in Rwanda for the next 1-2 years
  • Entrepreneurial attitude
  • Excellent analytical skills, including Excel modelling
  • Eagerness to work in the field and get your hands dirty (literally!)
  • Excellent problem-solving skills and ability to get things done
  • Humble and willing to learn from others
  • Commitment and passion for social change
  • Work hard and play hard; great sense of humor
  • Background in process engineering or civil engineering is a plus

Additional Information

To apply, submit a resume and cover letter to jobs@earthenable.org with "First & Last Name – Position Title” in the email subject line. In the cover letter, include what you see as the biggest risk to scaling the DIY product. All application materials should be in English, written directly by the candidate.