Erick Watson, Product Manager in Seattle, WA, United States
Erick is available for hire
Hire Erick

Erick Watson

Verified Expert  in Product Management

Product Manager

Location
Seattle, WA, United States
Toptal Member Since
June 28, 2019

Erick is an innovative, entrepreneurial executive leader who translates customer needs into compelling product strategies that animate the business and technical worlds. He accelerates business impact with outstanding performance across product strategy and execution, challenging the status quo with industry-disruptive tech solutions. Erick distills and communicates complex technical information to drive action across the organization, interfacing with board members and C-level executives.

Project Highlights

CodaLab Platform for Reproducible Research and Data Science Competitions
Developed and led the functional design of core features for Project CodaLab.
Human Opinion Search Engine
Led the development of a patented Internet Human Opinion Search Engine and resulting knowledge graph.
Blockchain Mining Data Center
Led the design, construction, and operation of a boutique 1,400 square foot, 1 Megawatt, 2.1 PetaHash, Tier 3 data center.

Expertise

Work Experience

Managing Director | Product Consultant

2013 - PRESENT
SproutVest Advisers
  • Oversaw identity and access management (IAM) for two yrs for Elevance Health (formerly Anthem Healthcare), helping 34 million members, increasing YoY adoption and retention by 10% and member CSAT by 7%, and reducing YoY inbound call volume by 6%.
  • Implemented the enterprise data lakehouse platform for Edge by Ascential, processing hundreds of millions of eCommerce records for their flagship product: Market Share.
  • Led a team at Blockchain Holdings to establish a 1,400 square feet, 1 megawatt, 2.1 petahash, tier 3 data center designed for GPU and ASIC blockchain mining of Litecoin, Ethereum, Bitcoin, and other cryptocurrencies.
  • Raised $30 million to invest in pre-IPO secondary share offerings of Twitter, Facebook, and others by matching complimentary accredited investors to inside sellers via an intermediate venture fund for inception capital management as a partner.
  • Partnered with Microsoft Research to spearhead product and program management of several AI and machine learning initiatives, including Codalab, an MS Azure-hosted platform for research and data science competitions.

Product Manager

2022 - 2023
Angi.com
  • Increased website conversion rates by 8%, resulting in tens of millions of dollars per year in additional gross revenue.
  • Reduced abandonment/bounce rates by 3%, retaining tens of millions of dollars per year in gross revenue.
  • Developed a data science-driven experimentation framework for rapid prototyping and A/B testing of search engine marketing (SEM) tactics.

Senior Product Manager

2021 - 2022
Google
  • Spearheaded product development focused on identifying market dynamics that generate incremental annual recurring revenue (IARR) for Google search advertising channel partners and sellers.
  • Advocated for product needs with engineering and management teams. Aligned direct reports in the design and launch, minimizing distraction to focus on product priorities.
  • Increased IARR for Google search ads by $1.22 billion, enhancing consumer demand customer insight and enabling sellers to discover prioritized opportunities that are hard to detect in the Connect Sales CRM search trends and benchmarks pages.

Principal Digital Product Manager

2019 - 2020
Anthem Blue Cross and Blue Shield
  • Improved member adoption and retention by over 10% YoY by leading product management and DevOps for identity and access management infrastructure supporting Anthem's 32+ million members using SAFe methodologies.
  • Increased member CSAT by over 7% YoY by creating unified, personalized experiences for members with strategic partners such as Google and Fidelity Investments, leveraging data science insights and the implementation of HL7 and FHIR APIs.
  • Reduced inbound call volumes by 6% YoY by leading member self-service and call reduction initiatives linking interactive voice response to customer records via an online virtual assistant programmed to handle the majority of call drivers.

Chief Product Officer

2017 - 2019
Quantarium
  • Co-founded and transformed an AI software engineering startup into a mature cloud-computing business for the real estate industry, developing and executing a customer-focused, scalable product and commercialization strategy.
  • Oversaw product development—including marketing, prioritization, and lifecycle management—CRM, and sales operations processes, managing a team of eight and a P&L of $10 million.
  • Led the company acquisition and designed and launched a corporate spinout from the parent company to position the company for an over 100% growth rate and unlock latent business value.
  • Drove the development of a predictive analytics SaaS platform and API, ranked first in coverage and accuracy by the industry's top benchmarking firm, using AI, computer vision, and machine learning to cover all 105 million residential US households.
  • Launched an AWS B2B eCommerce, realizing a greater distribution of products and services and generating over $12 million in new sales opportunities.
  • Spearheaded the development of a service powered by Quantarium Amazon Alexa, allowing channel partners to offer virtual assistant self-service functionality for mortgage servicing workflows to end users.

Co-founder | Chief Product Officer

2015 - 2017
Trensant
  • Led the development and commercialization of Trensant's patented portfolio of graph databases, text analytics pipelines, machine learning algorithms, and SaaS APIs with monthly venture funding.
  • Applied an NLP processing pipeline to structured and unstructured social media data sources to predict the 2016 US presidential election by one electoral vote.
  • Secured board approval and implemented a new SaaS business model, assembling value proposition, sales motion, and P&L to achieve geometric revenue growth with only linear increases in cost.
  • Launched a new SaaS API and landed numerous channel partners, including Microsoft, Domo, Qlik, Tableau, and PointLogic.

Non-executive Director (NED) and Board Advisor

2015 - 2016
G.A.E.M.S., Inc.
  • Led the finance committee, raising $15 million in debt financing to fund supply chain operations and product manufacturing in China.
  • Focused on assisting the leadership team with corporate governance, business planning, intellectual property, finance, executive compensation, and M&A strategy.
  • Managed the CEO Search and Executive Compensation committees, which secured a new CEO for the company and established competitive compensation guidelines for all corporate directors.

Principal Program Manager | Artificial Intelligence

2013 - 2015
Microsoft
  • Led the technical program management for several artificial intelligence and machine learning initiatives on behalf of Microsoft Research’s Academic Outreach team.
  • Developed and led the functional design of core features for Project CodaLab, and over 60 online executable papers for computer scientists to enhance productivity and consistency in data-driven research.
  • Hosted and enabled more than 300 machine learning data science competitions.
  • Identified and retained collaborators to specify, design, develop, and launch http://www.codalab.org as an open-source, GitHub-hosted project.
  • Established and grew a highly specialized and technical community of machine learning experts from zero to over 3,000 members.

Director | Product Management

2011 - 2013
Metavana
  • Launched the original NPS SaaS API, enabling real-time NPS measurement based on online human sentiment.
  • Designed and implemented a new SaaS business model that enabled exponential revenue growth without corresponding cost increases.
  • Recognized by Gartner Group as a 2013 Cool Vendor in content and social analytics.

Director | Business Strategy and Market Development

2010 - 2011
Microsoft
  • Established new partnerships on behalf of Microsoft Research Asia for product development, technology transfer, and strategic sourcing with software development partners.
  • Led Microsoft's innovation and market access agenda with the Chinese government, industry, and academia.
  • Managed a USD $150 million P&L supporting an organization of 130 people.
  • Grew Microsoft's investment in the China partner ecosystem by over 33% or USD $50 million.
  • Established the company's first formal market research function focused on Microsoft Partners in China, unleashing a wave of Sino-centric insight.

CodaLab Platform for Reproducible Research and Data Science Competitions

http://www.codalab.org

Developed and led the functional design of core features for Project CodaLab.

I was involved in developing and leading the functional design of core features for Project CodaLab. I also led the technical program management for several artificial intelligence and machine learning initiatives on behalf of Microsoft Research's Academic Outreach team.

Human Opinion Search Engine

https://pdfpiw.uspto.gov/.piw?docid=10162900

Led the development of a patented Internet Human Opinion Search Engine and resulting knowledge graph.

Led the development of a patented Internet Human Opinion Search Engine and resulting knowledge graph, which led to the parent company being acquired for this technology.

Blockchain Mining Data Center

Led the design, construction, and operation of a boutique 1,400 square foot, 1 Megawatt, 2.1 PetaHash, Tier 3 data center.

Led a team of industry experts in the specification, site selection, construction, provisioning, and operation of a Tier 3 data center designed for ASIC blockchain mining of Bitcoin and related cryptocurrencies. This included the definition of all operational processes, such as maintenance, security, power, and heat management.

ASU Pocket | Portable & Secure Digital Wallet

http://pocket.asu.edu/

Cultivated industry and public partnerships, handling all partner onboarding and training for ASU Pocket, an open source blockchain wallet enabling users to carry and manage their verifiable learning credentials anywhere.

ASU Pocket is a portable, secure, and verified digital wallet for learning, work, and life. ASU aspires to what President Crow calls the fifth realm of education: infinitely scalable learning. In service to that vision, we need infinitely scalable ways to showcase that learning and match it to jobs of the future. Learner empowerment is the most vital accelerant to accomplish this.

Under the moniker Pocket, we designed a solution built on trust that offers nearly unlimited capacity for students to capture their learner journey and connect their skills with jobs of the future.
1989 - 1993

Bachelor's Degree in Linguistics

Louisiana State University - Louisiana, USA

JANUARY 2023 - JANUARY 2024

Google Ads Search Certification

Google Digital Academy (Skillshop)

JANUARY 2023 - JANUARY 2024

Google Analytics Certification

Google

JANUARY 2022 - JANUARY 2024

Google Display & Video Certification

Google Digital Academy (Skillshop)

JANUARY 2017 - PRESENT

Executive Data Science Specialization

Coursera

Tools

Jira, Google Analytics, G Suite, Adobe Analytics

Platforms

Blockchain

Paradigms

Data Science, Agile

Industry Expertise

Healthcare, Financial Services, Venture Capital

Other

Program Management, Project Management, eCommerce, Startups, APIs, Business Development, Marketing Strategy, Competitive Strategy, Finance, Amazon Web Services (AWS), Big Data, Software as a Service (SaaS), Intellectual Property, Microsoft Azure, Machine Learning, Salesforce, Angel Investing, Digital Marketing, Artificial Intelligence (AI), Partner Management, Strategic Partnerships, Product Management, Product Marketing, Innovation, Growth, Strategy, A/B Testing, Analytics, Customer Relationship Management (CRM), Backlog Management, Business Intelligence (BI), Business to Business (B2B), Cloud Computing, Community Development, Go-to-market Strategy, Market Research, P&L Management, R&D, Customer Engagement, Enterprise Software, Entrepreneurship, Senior Executive Management, Leadership, Google Ads, Google Search Console, Product Innovation, Blockchain & Cryptocurrency, Conceptualization, Digital Product Management, New Product Development, Non-fungible Tokens (NFT), Squarespace, Fintech, Content Marketing, Content Strategy, Pitch Decks, Storytelling, Predictive Analytics, Decentralized Finance (DeFi), Decentralized Autonomous Organizations (DAO), YouTube SEO, YouTube Marketing, YouTube API, Google Display Network, Tokenomics, Cybersecurity

Collaboration That Works

How to Work with Toptal

Toptal matches you directly with global industry experts from our network in hours—not weeks or months.

1

Share your needs

Discuss your requirements and refine your scope in a call with a Toptal domain expert.
2

Choose your talent

Get a short list of expertly matched talent within 24 hours to review, interview, and choose from.
3

Start your risk-free talent trial

Work with your chosen talent on a trial basis for up to two weeks. Pay only if you decide to hire them.

Top talent is in high demand.

Start hiring