Business Development is the main 'business-to-business' facing department within the company and our main purpose is to 'maximise the effectiveness of the relationships between the Student Loans Company and its business partners and stakeholders'.
My current role within the department is HEI Services Manager which has the overall responsibility for universities and colleges (Higher Education Institutions / HEIs) across the UK. The current services we offer HEIs are Courses Management, Bursaries Administration, Financial Information, Attendance Reporting/Fee Payments and Change of Circumstance notifications. All of the services are on-line and are made available to HEIs via our HE Portal.
My role has 3 key objectives - Service (Product) Management, Relationship Management & Partner Delivery Management:-
- Service (Product) Management
Production of Strategies & Business Plans for all HEI Services, and the subsequent product performance reporting to monitor progress against targets and Service Level Agreements. We also have Service Reviews to ensure issues are managed and we can continually enhance our services to our stakeholders.
Relationship (Account) Managers provide a principle point of contact between the HEI & SLC ensuring a source of enquiry resolution and an escalation point for unresolved operational issues where required. We have established a year long engagement programme with HEIs including annual conferences, regional forums, regular bulletins & HEI information website.
- Partner Delivery Management
We need to ensure that HEIs are aware of all new/enhanced services to them through each academic year cycle and what their actions and responsibilities are to ensure effective delivery of our student finance services. We achieve this through our RM engagement framework, running business training/awareness programmes and monitoring and measuring HEI performance throughout the year.
I have a team of 3 Relationship Managers and 2 Product Consultants that help me achieve the above.
The job is challenging and diverse, with each day different from the next and each with a whole new set of challenges. We are also probably the most travelled team in the company.
Prior to working in Business Development my first role within SLC was within the Management Information Office, initially as an analyst, quickly reaching team leader within a few months of joining. This involved managing a small team of analysts producing key management information for the business and stakeholders via projects. I gained a lot of knowledge of the business through this role and also of the many data sources and diverse requirements of our stakeholders.
I then moved to Business Development as Business Design Manager in January 2005, assuming a larger responsibility for project deliverables including Business Cases and Business Design, but also responsible for establishing and maintaining key relationships with our stakeholders to ensure their requirements were met. I then assumed my current role in November 2006.