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Sr. Release manager



Kitchener, ON, Canada · Remote
Posted on Tuesday, October 31, 2023

D2L is a cloud company that is modernizing education and building the Future of Work. The old models of teaching and learning are in the midst of the largest transformation in history, and D2L is at the heart of that fundamental shift.

New models of teaching and learning enable a personalized, student-centric experience – and deliver improved retention, engagement, satisfaction, and results for learners of all ages – in schools, campuses, and companies.

D2L is disrupting the way the world learns, by providing the next generation learning environment and solutions to engage and inspire learners. And most importantly, by giving customers a platform that is easy, flexible, and smart. No other company provides a solution as robust and innovative as D2L.

D2L has had a singular mission for 20 years and is dedicated to that same mission in the years ahead: to transform the way the world learns – and by doing so, we will help improve human potential globally.

A member of our Talent Acquisition team reviews ALL of our applications - yes a real person reviews resumes! They are excited to read more about what amazing things you could add to D2L.

General Description (Job Summary):

The mission of Product Operations at D2L is to partner with the whole organization to enable effective, outcome-oriented, and market-driven product, technology, and services organizations. The Senior Release Manager is a cross-functional leader responsible for coordinating and facilitating a wide variety of cross-functional teams towards a successful product release. The focus for this role is internal enablement to ensure release readiness and alignment across all teams to do the best work of their lives and sustainably deliver world-class products.

Reporting to the Director of Product Planning, this role will enable the delivery phase of D2L’s efficient, effective, and agile product development lifecycle with a deep focus on light-weight process design and implementation, communication and training, and organizational acceleration.

Major Responsibilities (How Will I Make an Impact?):

Release Enablement

  • Monitor and report on progress of the release readiness to all stakeholders. A release may include new products, retired functionality, new or changed features, and fixes.
  • Summarize and consolidate release information to focus on relevant details for internal teams to consume consistently and efficiently so they can quickly understand impact to their team’s processes, documentation, and onboarding and make appropriate changes.
  • Encourage early and meaningful feedback from release stakeholders on how changes impact them, and continuously raise the bar on definition of done.
  • Monitor risks, status of deliverables, and facilitate mitigation plans associated with releases. Communicate these effectively to stakeholders and leaders with a pulse on when escalation is needed to proceed.
  • Act as an advocate for customer experience by understanding client disruption and impact and ensuring a minimally impactful roll out of updates.

Cross-Functional Collaboration

  • Work upstream with product and services teams to advise and consult on release and launch approaches to ensure products and services being released meet stakeholder requirements and have minimal barriers to effective release by applying curiosity, knowledge, and judgment.
  • Identify release stakeholders and work collaboratively to understand their requirements, including the team’s objectives and deliverables, how various types of changes impact them, and how much advance notice they need.
  • Build bridges between Product teams, Sales, Marketing, Services and other parts of the organization to drive productivity and efficiency while holding teams accountable for high quality outcomes.
  • Support continuous delivery and deployment teams through standard release cycles and hot fix needs.

Process Creation & Improvement

  • Review and analyze the effectiveness and efficiency of existing processes such as new product introduction (NPI), go to market (GTM), release readiness, enablement, end-of-life, etc., and develop strategies for future improvements.
  • Drive initiatives that improve the effectiveness and efficiency of internal processes allowing Product teams to sustainably deliver product and optimize time to value.
  • Identify opportunities to breakdown large process changes into smaller slices to reduce the burden of change and allow for quick iterations based on feedback.
  • Advocate for change and work with cross-functional teams to implement plans that realize process improvements across all of D2L.

Grow a Data Informed Organization

  • Analyze release health to evaluate how the impact of a release affects quality and identify patterns to set targets.
  • Champion leveraging data to inform decision making throughout all release management practices.

Communicate to Diverse Audiences

  • Create lightweight documentation of D2L’s release processes that clearly articulates the value and is geared to the target audience.
  • Evangelize D2L’s processes and best practices across teams.
  • Lead cross-functional meetings to enable teams on each release and upcoming high impact changes.
  • Tailor written and verbal communication for senior leaders and customers in cases where release management support is needed in escalations and high impact changes.


  • Strong understanding of how to effectively work with customers and how product management teams operate
  • Growth mindset with a desire to learn continuously across a variety of functional areas
  • Consultative approach and proven track record of effective collaboration and influence at all levels of an organization, with the ability to achieve goals in a fast-paced and continuously evolving environment
  • Passionate about building a data informed culture and leveraging data to drive decisions
  • Moderate knowledge of D2L Products, its users and markets it operates in
  • Ability to manage multiple concurrent release projects


  • Understanding of technical documentation fundamentals
  • Strong agile project and process management skills with an ability to own planning, scheduling, and coordinating
  • Strong active listening skills to build empathy and understanding with stakeholders
  • Exceptional verbal communication skills across diverse audiences
  • Data literacy skills to consume reporting and visualizations to gain insights to be used to make decisions or drive improvement initiatives

D2L Leadership Competencies:

  • Leads by Example with personal and professional integrity, high accountability and say/do ratio.
  • Boundaryless collaboration and influence skills both within team, peer group and broader organization. Effective communicator with a proven track record of.
  • Delivers Awesome Outcomes: Strategic mindset and business acumen, with strong prioritization skills and a focus on organizational outcomes vs. team tasks. Effective problem solver, able to achieve results individually and through others, in fast paced, deadline-driven environments.
  • Talent Magnet: Talent-focused leader, with demonstrated ability to coach, build and lead a high performing, diverse team.
  • Better, Smarter, Faster: An agile learner, with a growth mindset, attention to detail and organizational skills. An operationally minded leader, with a focus on continuous improvement and innovation.
  • Wins Hearts and Minds: An effective communicator, with the ability to connect the why and the what. A change agent, with proven delegation, motivation, and team building skills.

Education Recommendations:

  • Bachelor’s degree or equivalent in Business Administration or related
  • Master’s degree, ITIL, PMP, Six Sigma, SAFe or Certified Scrum Master specialized certificate would be highly valued

Don’t meet every single requirement? We strongly encourage you to still apply! At D2L, we are committed to creating a diverse and inclusive environment. We encourage your application even if you don't believe you meet every single qualification outlined, because we love to help our people grow and develop!

Why we're awesome:

At D2L, we are dedicated to providing you with the tools to do the best work of your life. While some of our perks and benefits may vary depending on location or employment type, we are proud to provide employees with the following through #LifeAtD2L;

  • Impactful work transforming the way the world learns
  • Flexible work arrangements
  • Learning and Growth opportunities
  • Tuition reimbursement of up to $4,000 CAD for continuing education through our Catch the Wave Program
  • 2 Paid Days off for Catch the Wave related activities like exams or final assignments
  • Employee wellbeing (Access to mental health services, EFAP program, financial planning and more)
  • Retirement planning
  • 2 Paid Volunteer Days
  • Competitive Benefits Package
  • Home Internet Reimbursements
  • Employee Referral Program
  • Wellness Reimbursement
  • Employee Recognition
  • Social Events
  • Dog Friendly Offices at our HQ in Kitchener, Winnipeg, Vancouver and Melbourne.