The role of the business development manager (BDM) in schools is changing. Whether you already have a BDM, or are thinking of hiring one, here are three questions to consider when creating or updating the BDM’s job description.
With Whom Will Your BDM Interact?
Thinking about the people with whom your BDM will interact will give you a good indication of the level at which you want your BDM to work.
Will your BDM interact with governing body members?
Will your BDM work closely with the senior leadership team?
Will your BDM work with HODs and administrators?
The more people, and the more levels of responsibility, your BDM is involved with, the more significant the BDM’s responsibility. Make sure the BDM’s job description covers the different types of responsibility you want him or her to take on. Otherwise there will be confusion – on all sides – about the scope of the role.
What Budgetary Responsibilities Will Your BDM Have?
The ability to get things done in any organisation is often linked with budgetary responsibilities. A good indicator of what you really expect of your BDM will be found in the budgetary responsibilities he or she holds.
Is your BDM responsible for your marketing and promotion budget? Does your BDM handle your advertising budget? Is there a separate business development budget? Can your BDM rearrange spending priorities without authorisation or must a senior leader’s approval be sought?
All these decisions are yours to make. However, the amount of discretion you allow your BDM will have an impact on how much your BDM is actually able to achieve. Think carefully before you specify what your BDM can – and cannot – do in terms of spending.
To Whom Will Your BDM Report?
This looks like a simple question, but is it? If your BDM is taking on whole school responsibilities, and a strategic role, then he or she needs to work with, and for, people who also have a whole school perspective.
Is the BDM high enough in the school’s hierarchy to report to the head? If your BDM reports to someone who is not on the senior team, will he or she be able to work strategically?
When you create your BDM’s job description, and advertise the role, you will get a different type of applicant, if your BDM is on the leadership team, from the type of applicant you will attract, if the role is essentially a junior management role.
Need Some Clarity?
Do you need to step back and think about the role of the BDM and how you are going to enable your BDM to succeed? If you do, talk to DOHR about creating an effective BDM job description. Save time by calling on our expertise.