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Director, Planning and Financial Management

Date: May, 2011                 GRADE:  USG 12
Reports to (Job Title): Executive Director
Jobs Reporting (Job Titles): Financial Assistant
Business/Data Analyst
Location: Waterloo Campus

Primary Purpose

This role is accountable for developing and continuously improving a business model for co-op, including levels and costs of services currently or potentially provided, and a related funding model, including co-op fees.  The incumbent manages and enhances the CECA business planning process, building and refining a multi-year enrolment projection model to support strategy development, resource planning, and performance measurement.  The incumbent also manages the financial operations of the department.

Key Accountabilities:

1.  Build, test and enhance a business model for co-op.  This involves:

  • Determining a cost structure to support cost/benefit analyses of current and potential services to students and employers
  • Recommending annual co-op fees
  • Tracking and projecting co-op enrolments to enable appropriate resource and strategic planning
  • Identifying and implementing a framework of performance measures by which the department’s performance can be measured, and on which management and strategic decisions can be made
  • Monitoring key performance indicators to identify current and potential areas of concern
  • Communicating the business model and performance metrics to increase stakeholder understanding and support of co-op performance

2.  Ensure completeness and accuracy of the department’s operational data on which performance metrics are based, and strategic and management decisions are made.  This involves:

  • Regular reporting on and monitoring operational data
  • Identifying missing or incorrect data and working with staff to eliminate problems

3.  Manage the financial operations of the department by:

  • Developing and enforcing expense management policies and practices
  • Ensuring accurate and complete financial record keeping and transaction management, including any externally funded programs, e.g. Industry Canada’s Small Business Internship Program
  • Setting unit budgets within CECA
  • Ensuring the co-op fee revenue-based budget and expenses align appropriately with the general ledger

4.  Lead and manage direct reports and ensure the delivery of results in support of CECA mission, vision and guiding principles including:

  • Providing information and context needed for employees to be effective
  • Hiring, developing and retaining the best qualified staff available from inside or outside CECA.
  • Setting goals and expectations and helping employees create clear paths to success
  • Developing effective work team dynamics
  • Ensuring appropriate back up, support and cross training to manage capacity
  • Holding employees accountable for performance including consistent application of CECS business processes
  • Managing performance through both formal (performance appraisal) and informal methods such as regular feedback, coaching and one-to-ones.
  • Identifying development opportunities in others and co-creating with the employee a development plan; regularly following up on the progress of development

5.  Provide overall leadership to the organization by:

  • Personally championing mission, vision and guiding principles and playing a leadership role in bringing them to life
  • Providing leadership, direction and strategic planning for CECA
  • Monitoring business practices to ensure that CECA has the appropriate practices and processes to work effectively internally and represent Waterloo externally
  • Leading the development of new capabilities required by the introduction of new systems, tools or processes
  • Developing productive, collaborative working relationships across CECA and uWaterloo
  • Leading or contributing to the identification, development and implementation of projects to improve service quality, relationships, stakeholder satisfaction, timeliness, staff capability and performance
  • Developing internal/external customer service standards, monitoring satisfaction with service delivered and taking action to restore and enhance service quality

Position Requirements


University undergraduate degree; financial management designation(e.g. CA, CMA)



MS Word Excel PowerPoint Other
Intermediate Advanced:  Able to develop complex financial analysis using Excel, and to act as an Excel resource to the department Intermediate MS Project: Intermediate ability to track or manage simple projects 

Nature and Scope

Interpersonal Skills:

This role requires a high level of communication and negotiation skills, presenting financial and performance metrics in ways that will enable staff, student and administration understanding and enlist support.  Collaboration with internal and external partners is required. 

Level of Responsibility:

Problem Solving

The incumbent will resolve problems of multiple conflicting priorities, vendor problems, requests or complaints from Waterloo faculty or staff, or issues with funding bodies outside uWaterloo (e.g. Industry Canada), or employers seeking funding through those programs.  Escalation of problems to the Executive Director is expected to be minimal.

Financial Accountability

The role is accountable for staffing and associated costs for the unit, and is accountable for monitoring the department’s budget, identifying potential over/under runs in advance, and ensuring appropriate expense policies are in place and followed.


Internal and External Contacts


Institutional Analysis and Planning; Finance; Co-op Education Council; Faculties, the Federation of Students; the Co-op Students Council; the Registrar’s Office; Graduate Studies Office; CECA Executive team


Government and business development organizations; employers; suppliers of services or products

Decision-Making Authority:

The incumbent is fully accountable for decisions within the unit, including hiring decisions and performance evaluations, and uses judgment to determine when and how to escalate issues to the Executive Director or elsewhere at Waterloo.  The incumbent will make decisions on department financial policies, and frameworks.

Physical and Sensory Demands:

This role requires exertion of physical or sensory effort resulting in slight fatigue, strain or risk of injury. 

Working Environment:

Involves moderate psychological risk resulting from unavoidable exposure to hazardous, disagreeable or uncomfortable environmental conditions. There may be unusual hours or schedules due, irregular and/or high volumes, multiple and/or tight deadlines beyond one's control, and constant interruptions.