Product Manager, Writer, and Editor for Science Kits and Toys
This is a dream job for a person with a unique mix of talents: Help create, write, design, and test science experiment kits, toys, and games for a leading children’s educational product company. Thames & Kosmos is a growing company with the mission of promoting scientific literacy, engineering skills, critical thinking, problem solving, and other important skills by publishing high-quality, hands-on science experiment kits, activity kits, and board games.
The ideal candidate will have excellent written, verbal, and visual communication skills; superb editing skills; strong scientific literacy; science educational experience; consumer product design and product development experience; excellent creative abilities; and will be extremely well organized and detail-oriented.
Candidates for this position will likely have experience related to one or more of the following roles:
● Writer and editor of science educational materials and instructions
● Science, math, STEM educator/communicator
● Product manager and product designer
● Maker, inventor, engineer
● Editorial Work/Content Creation
○ Create experiment manuals for science kits, and other instructional materials
○ Write and edit instructional copy, user education materials, explanatory scientific copy, and product marketing copy
○ Edit copy and layouts in InDesign
○ Collaborate with internal and external graphic designers
○ Work with external translation contractors (most often German to English translations) and external authors as needed
● Product Development/Product Design
○ Work on all aspects of development of new products, which involves collaborating with the company’s parent company, Kosmos, as well as other suppliers around the world
○ Help track and manage product development schedules and product changes
○ Perform item budgeting and cost negotiations with suppliers
○ Sketch and prototype new products
○ Design and develop lessons and experiments for science kits and toys
○ Test product usability and functionality; communicate improvements to developers
○ Advocate for usability, product value, and product awesomeness
○ Work with internal graphic design team and external contractors to develop products, packaging, videos, and other media assets
○ Collaborate with product safety and compliance teams
○ Research trends, competition, new technologies, invention submissions, user needs, customer requests, sales performance, market opportunities and other data sources to develop fun new product concepts
○ Assist our technical support staff with answers to the more scientific questions from our customers
○ Seek out and work with teachers, educators, and educational consultants to review and test products for classroom use
○ Collaborate on projects at makerspaces, local schools, and institutions
○ Conduct user testing and user research for the purpose of product improvements
Job Skills, Qualities, and Experience
The candidate must have the following:
● Impeccable writing and editing skills. The ability to write and edit with an exacting level of precision in grammar, adherence to a style guide, consistency in terminology, and organization.
● Ability to conceptualize, design, and create a product from scratch
● Excellent and organized communication skills: oral, written, and visual (sketching)
● Strong and comprehensive scientific literacy and understanding
● Operate at an exceptional level of productivity, organization, and accountability
● Experience in the user-centered design process from need-finding and conceptualization to brainstorming and prototyping to final production
● Team player with positive attitude and the confidence that you can solve problems and figure things out
● Ability to meet deadlines and balance multiple priorities and projects.
● Strong attention to detail
● A desire to be the best, impress, and develop the best products
● A love of toys, games, science, making things, engineering, and designing fun products!
While not all required, the candidate selected will likely have some of the following:
● Undergraduate or Master’s Degree, preferably in product design, engineering, or other STEM field
● Skills/experience as a science teacher or educator
● Ability to imagine yourself in the place of the user (most often a child), understand what they want and need in the product, and advocate for what is best for the user
● Experience designing and running user test sessions
● Skills and passion of a maker, hacker, builder, and engineer
● Hands-on experience in prototyping, model building, construction, and materials
● General knowledge of fabrication, printing, and manufacturing processes
● Strong computer skills. Adobe InDesign skills are a strong plus. You will be required to learn how to edit copy in InDesign.
● Photoshop and Illustrator skills for communication
● 3D rendering and CAD experience
● Visual-spatial skills, ability to visualize and sketch three-dimensional objects
● Technical drawing skills: Ability to draw renderings of product and packaging designs
● Experience with technical fields like robotics, electronics, software design, hobby programming
● Familiarity with the NGSS (Next Generation Science Standards)
● Experience with science fairs and other science-based events
This position is based at the company’s headquarters in Providence, RI.
• Annual salary commensurate with experience. Full-time, based on 40-hour workweek, regular business hours (Monday – Friday, 9am-5pm), bi-weekly payroll.
• Full company-paid health insurance after two full months of employment
• Generous vacation and sick day policy
• Retirement plan options available after one year of employment
• Plus additional benefits
• Cover letter. Please explain why you want the position and why you are a good fit for the position.
• Writing sample(s)
• Portfolio or examples of product development work
• Any compensation requirements (and salary history, if applicable)
No calls please. Incomplete applications will not be accepted.
About the Company
Thames & Kosmos is headquartered in Providence, Rhode Island and works closely with product development teams at our parent company, the 200-year-old publishing house Kosmos based in Stuttgart Germany, as well as at other partner companies around the world. Thames & Kosmos is a place where creativity is valued, teamwork is essential, and hard work is recognized.