Skip to the content of the web site.

Client Relations Manager

Department: Centre for Extended Learning Effective Date:

April, 2013



35 hr/wk

Reports to: Assoc Director, Prof Devlpmt

General Accountability

Nature and Scope

The Professional Development (PD) program, within the Centre for Extended Learning, exists to develop, deliver, and support non-credit professional development courses, corporate training, community outreach initiatives, and other related activities happening across the uWaterloo campus.  It is important that this unit develop relationships with other units across campus, with business and community organizations, and with professional associations. The PD program is a cost-recovery operation which must generate its own income and maintain its own fiscal viability.


The Client Relations Manager (Manager) is accountable to the Associate Director, Professional Development for the implementation and successful operation of new and existing revenue-generating initiatives and strategies that will contribute to the growth of PD registration volume and revenues, which are necessary for the ongoing success of the unit. This involves all aspects of the PD program including client relationship management, marketing, budget maintenance, customer retention, course and instructor evaluation, determining appropriate service levels, business development, and directing software development priorities for the PD Registration System.


The Manager is accountable to the strategic stakeholder groups (internal and external) who contribute to providing a large number of high quality professional development opportunities for adult learners. The Manager is the primary point of contact and organizational representative for existing PD clients, taking particular advantage of face-to-face opportunities with the largest client group, in-class participants, to build and develop these relationships.

The Manager is involved at the strategic and implementation levels for all new PD projects, including IT development projects.

Statistical Data

Revenue:               $1.7 million

Enrolments:             3,300 annually

Specific Accountabilities

1.  Client Relationship Management – Increase engagement and strengthen connection to all client groups (i.e. individual in-class and online clients, internal e-commerce clients, external partners, corporate training clients). Maintain positive and mutually beneficially relationships and partnerships with a wide variety of stakeholders including industry professionals and professional associations (provincial and national). Ensure the diverse (and sometimes opposing) needs of different client groups are met in a timely manner given limited resources. Deal with all escalated (Tier 2) client service issues and inquiries. Foster and strengthen relationships between alumni and the university.


2.  Marketing – Promote learning opportunities in a variety of ways including: regular interaction with in-class participants to build relationships and provide opportunities for cross-selling; active involvement with creating content and distributing the monthly e-newsletter; providing content for the primary marketing piece utilized by PD (the semi-annual course calendar); attending tradeshows, annual general meetings, conferences, and other opportunities to promote the various PD offerings; providing updates for the PD website. Also involved with market research and customer satisfaction projects. Business development through researching, creating, and implementing new course and certificate offerings which broaden the existing PD offerings to increase revenue and customer retention opportunities.


3.  Program Management – Manage all administrative aspects of PD programs, including course management, course logistics, and tracking of enrolment metrics. Ensure that classroom and electronic resources are in place to optimize teaching and learning opportunities. Develop and maintain productive working relationships with various members of the university community and external vendors. Oversee and coordinate all aspects of service delivery for PD clients.


4.  Budget Maintenance – Monitor the PD budget of approximately $1.4 million. Proper accounting and financial procedures must be followed for cash payments, POS terminal transactions, and the e-commerce website. Ensure all bank deposits, invoices, department transfers, p-card transactions (6 users), and cheque requests are processed accurately. Monthly reconciliation and reporting of revenue and expenses. Coordinate the distribution of T2022A tax forms for eligible programs.


5.  Operations Management – Develop effective and efficient workflow, business rules, and procedures within PD. Make  resource allocation decisions according to program size, prominence, potential, and profitability. Schedule all in-class courses, balancing multiple factors and constrained by instructor availability and limited facilities. Provide input to decisions regarding the use of technologies to enhance functionality. Prioritize PD Registration System development items (i.e. bugs, feature requests, system upgrades) for the in-house technical team. Liaise between the technical team and clients to create required specifications for development work. Identify technology trends that could potentially impact the type, level, or utliziation of services provided. As requested, assist hiring managers in interviewing candidates.


6.  Program Profitability – Working with the Associate Director, Professional Development, accountable for recommending pricing to optimize program volumes and overall profitability. Review the on-going profitability of individual courses and programs and make recommendations on continuation or appropriate adaptations. Ensure appropriate variable and fixed costs are allocated so profitability by program can be compared. In consultation with Associate Director of PD, decide for each instance of every course whether to proceed as scheduled, weighing factors such as profitability, group dynamics, risk of client backlash to cancellations, progression through certificate requirements, etc. Negotiate fee compensation with instructors as directed, for standard and unique situations.


7.  Data Management – Responsible for the effective management, analysis, and utilization of customer relationship data in the PD Registration System. Review, sort, cleanse, and analyze mailing list data to ensure optimal distribution of the print calendar.


8.  Liaise with Learner Support Services – As requested, assist the Manager, Client Development and Learner Services in the recruitment, development, and training of Learner Support Services (LSS) team members


9.  Special Projects – as assigned.




University undergraduate degree (business, commerce, or marketing preferred) or equivalent education and experience.



A strong administrative background with a minimum 3 years experience working with adult learners. Experience and understanding of the challenges of working in a cost recovery unit. A solutions-driven, collaborative approach to problem-solving. Experience analyzing data to assist with decision-making.

Competencies will include client relationship management, marketing, business development, customer service, financial management, as well as interpersonal, organizational, technical, and communication skills.

Project management experience an asset. People management experience required.



The ability to translate business requirements into actionable development tasks. Familiarity with common e-commerce business processes. Basic audio-visual and technical skills. Awareness of web related communication tools.

Interpersonal Skills

The Manager requires exceptional relationship management skills to foster and strengthen relationships with external groups and across the University. A customer service orientation is critical. The Manager has excellent verbal and written communication skills, is focused on results, and is a team player. Must be able to manage multiple, time-sensitive projects and/or processes simultaneously. Must be able to operate effectively in an environment with multiple indirect reporting relationships.

Working Conditions

Some flexibility in scheduling required, including occasional evening and weekend hours. There are multiple and/or tight deadlines beyond one’s control, and constant interruptions (e.g. phone calls, emails, unplanned but urgent client issues, and varying client volumes at different times of the year). Limited resources and competing priorities.