Peter Spannagle, Product Manager in San Francisco, CA, United States
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Peter Spannagle

Verified Expert  in Product Management

Product Manager

San Francisco, CA, United States
Toptal Member Since
March 22, 2019

Peter has ten years of experience in developing products for startups and global brands. He's worked at scale for companies like Facebook, Samsung, and Salesforce, in addition to agency and startup environments. His primary strengths are in user experience, product strategy, and delivery.

Project Highlights

User Centric Methods, Machine Learning and Facebook Recruiting
How I helped an ML focused product team go from underperforming to overachieving.
Mobile First Strategy for
Mobile improvements became a “top 5” initiative for 2019. Cross-functional alignment on vision, opportunities, and tactics.
Human Longevity Inc
Led back to back engagements. Delivered on time with 100% customer satisfaction.


Work Experience

Senior Product Manager

2019 - 2021
Aurora Solar
  • Rebuilt the core platform—authentication, global navigation, list of projects, project overview, and settings—using iterative, research-based, and user-centric methods.
  • Made the business case to use Pendo for in-app messaging, guides, and surveys. Led a cross-org effort to roll out within one quarter.
  • Identified product readiness milestones and mapped these to cohorts of customers for phased rollout.
  • Sent data into Amplitude and insights out to product and go to market teams.

Head of Design

2018 - 2019
  • Headed brand and product design for blockchain based financial services platform backed by Lightspeed, Accel, and Flybridge.
  • Hired and managed an agency to deliver brand, product, and marketing deliverables.
  • Established user research methodology, design and prototyping tools, and agile processes.
  • Contributed to business development, personas, marketing, content strategy, roadmap, and product strategy.

Product Consultant

2018 - 2018
  • Re-oriented the product team to achieve business goals for machine learning in recruiting.
  • Researched insights to understand the root cause of low adoption.
  • Headed feature definition, pain point mapping, user journey modeling, workshop facilitation, backlog creation, prototyping, and concept testing.
  • Achieved KPIs including a 130% increase in claims within 30 days, 10X increase by EOY — exceeding the annual goal by 9%.


2017 - 2018
  • Enhanced the mobile experience for 3.5 million users of
  • Spearheaded cross-functional alignment on vision, opportunities, and tactics going from undefined to actionable in a single quarter. Mobile improvements made a “top 5” initiative for the year.
  • Led mobile first paradigm shifts in content strategy, user experience, and architecture projected to achieve 25% of targeted growth ($500 million) for FY 2019.
  • Discovered increasing trend in mobile prospects as well as new insights on mobile users, behaviors, and devices.

Senior Manager

2016 - 2017
Samsung Electronics America
  • Led experience design and creative direction for Samsung Plus, Samsung’s most popular mobile app in the US market.
  • Managed a UX team of eight, provided guidance for a 50 person team, negotiated contracts, maintained vendor relationships, and oversaw an annual budget of $800,000.
  • Refocused Samsung S+ to provide world-class customer care, increasing user base from 12 to 20 million installs, 5 to 8 million monthly active users, and improving app rating from 3.7 to 4.2.
  • Worked with executives in Seoul, Mountain View, New York, and Seattle on strategy and execution for special projects such as response to the Note7 crisis, expert text chat, and premium care.

Head of Design

2016 - 2016
Etops AG
  • Developed the design definition for the company’s first cloud-based SaaS product, a B2B Swiss investment banking platform for professional wealth managers.
  • Created the first detailed description of total features and functions.
  • Prioritized benchmarks according to business and user needs to define the initial release.
  • Led branding workshops to establish priorities and brand strategy; selected and managed an agency for creative services.

Principal UX Architect

2014 - 2015
  • Mentored and managed a creative team of ten at a growing agency to design iOS and Android apps and responsive web applications.
  • Improved processes by aligning creative methods across 15 teams introducing user-centric, lean, and collaborative methods including prototypes, concept design, and usability testing.
  • Focused on delivery and satisfaction;​ consistently delivered projects on time and budget, gaining repeat engagements with 100% client satisfaction.
  • Represented the company for client engagements and in outreach activities, identifying new opportunities, drafting statements of work, design estimation, and resource allocation.

Senior UX Designer

2013 - 2014
NCC Group Domain Services
  • Led planning meetings, created comps, wrote UI stories, and ensured build matched spec.
  • Established a UCD process within an evolving startup culture, strategy, and tools for capturing client insights.
  • Worked with marketing, sales, legal, and security teams to define and advance the brand, creating a consistent multi-channel experience.

Senior Interaction Designer

2011 - 2012
Blue Shield of California
  • Served as the creative lead for projects including home page redesign and patient reviews.
  • Defined the structure and behavior of interactive systems.
  • Conceptualized and prototyped​ site maps and information flows, static and clickable wireframes, and detailed specifications.
  • Directed offshore resources ​including work assignments, prototyping, and code reviews.


2007 - 2012
Your Custom Blog
  • Founded a company providing boutique design and development services.
  • Provided creative direction​, project management, and hiring for teams of 5-15.
  • Generated leads, closed deals, and maintained multi-year client relationships.
  • Designed and developed 100+ custom themes, establishing #1 page rank for “WordPress Consultant."

User Centric Methods, Machine Learning and Facebook Recruiting

How I helped an ML focused product team go from underperforming to overachieving.

I worked onsite at Facebook headquarters in Menlo Park, CA for 7 months in 2018. I embedded within a team that builds internal recruiting tools.

As a product consultant, my job was to uncover the reason for the low adoption of their first machine learning feature. I would help revise product strategy and work with the team to build and execute on a new roadmap.

We launched our first user-centric feature, using more iterative and research-based methods, and saw dramatic results.

1) 130% increase in claims within 30 days
2) By year’s end, we had a 10X increase in claims from ML features
3) The team exceeded it’s yearly goal by 9%, despite a rocky start

Mobile First Strategy for

Mobile improvements became a “top 5” initiative for 2019. Cross-functional alignment on vision, opportunities, and tactics.

From 11/2017 to 3/2018, I was a consultant for the marketing division of Salesforce. I worked closely with the strategy,
creative, and leadership teams to improve the mobile experience for I helped articulate a new vision for mobile, zeroing in on specific opportunities and tactics to engage mobile users and drive growth.

Highlights of revised mobile strategy:

1) Mobile first (rather than responsive): to drive improvements for all users and devices.

2) Invest in > 1 breakpoint: compared to a fluid grid, additional breakpoints and layout changes are more difficult to maintain, but can deliver a more tailored mobile experience.

3) Paradigm shift: long lists of products and features can overwhelm users. Instead, summarize and curate. Then personalize through interaction.

4) Define the mobile use case: "making introductions."

Human Longevity Inc

Led back to back engagements. Delivered on time with 100% customer satisfaction.

Human Longevity Inc is a San Diego based biotech company started by Craig Venter (first person to sequence the human genome), Bob Hariri (stem cell pioneer) and Peter Diamandis (founder of X PRIZE). HLI wanted to create a mobile app that would provide genetic insights for newborns and help moms track developmental data. I worked as the lead creative and PM, directing discovery and concept design, conducting client presentations and facilitating collaborative workshops.

The goal of the first engagement was to craft a prototype that would secure additional investment. I sorted through their ambitious list of ideas and priorities for the app, brainstorming and contributing new ideas. We then packaged the concepts in a “visual narrative” that demonstrated the aspirations and promise of the app.

The second engagement was to define MVP and the product roadmap, including creative and technical estimation. I directed user research that included: organizing a research plan, executing the study and synthesizing the results.
1999 - 2000

Bachelor's Degree in Cultural Geography

University of California - Berkeley, California


Leading for Creativity



Registered Yoga Teacher

Yoga Alliance


Trello, Asana,, Sketch, InVision, Jira, Figma, Zoom

Industry Expertise

Digital Agencies, Healthcare, Electronics


Agile, Agile UX, User Testing, Usability Testing, Quantitative Research, Agile Product Management, Agile Workflow




Responsive, UX Research, Product Ownership, Product Management, Minimum Viable Product (MVP), Lean Product Development, Project Delivery, Project Planning, Prototyping, User Stories, User Flows, User Journeys, User Requirements, User Workflows, User, Usability, Digital Strategy, Strategy, Strategy Planning, Growth Strategy, UX Strategy, Roadmaps, Product Roadmaps, Product Research, Customer Segmentation, Cross-functional Team Leadership, Cross-functional Collaboration, Qualitative Research, Product Strategy, Enterprise, Growth, Business Analysis, Requirements, Go-to-market Plans, User Research, Business Models, Product Design, Product Marketing, Product Frameworks, Innovation, Product Discovery, Product Delivery, Marketing Strategy, Medical Product Manager, Amplitude, Finance, Android, iOS, User Journey Maps, Business Strategy, Data, Social Media, Information Security

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