Business Development Manager

International Republican Institute
  • Location
    Washington, D.C.
  • Sector
    Non Profit
  • Experience
    Mid Career
  • Apply by
  • Posted
    Apr 17

Position description

Job Summary 

Every employee of IRI is responsible for carrying out the Mission of IRI and demonstrating the Core Values in their day-to-day operations. The Core Values, which are IRI’s foundational building blocks include:  

Excellence- We believe in quality results delivered by investing in people. Freedom- We believe in exploration and experimentation to be agile and responsive. Respect- We believe in trust, empathy, and empowering people. Teamwork- We believe in diversity, inclusion, and the power of global collaboration. Transparency- We believe in open communication and clear decision-making. Accountability- We believe in personal responsibility as the foundation of success. 

The Business Development Manager is responsible for assisting IRI in achieving its business development goals through the winning of competitive and pre-competed grants from U.S. and foreign donors. To do this, the Manager is responsible for collaborating with the Director for Business Development in developing a robust pipeline to secure new revenue each year. Facilitating collaboration with regional divisions and field-based program staff, s/he designs and implements a regional opportunity pipeline strategy, including pre-positioning (intelligence gathering, partnership development, and networking), and management of the proposal teams across the Institute to submit winning proposals. The Manager will drive country and regional teams to meet metric-based targets for interactions with donors and partners to build relationships and new business opportunities. Representing IRI’s long-term business interests through coordination with Finance and Grants staff, the Manager drives and facilitates the responsive, feasible, compliant, and innovative capture, design, and writing of winning, implementable projects by building the capacity of the Business Development team and managing a systematic proposal development process/workflow for all competitive proposals across the Institute.

Position Requirements

  • Undergraduate degree in relevant field in political science, international relations or related field.
  • Minimum seven years professional experience in related field 
  • Experience designing and/or implementing democracy and governance projects
  • Demonstrated ability to interact productively and build relationships with senior officials such as Agency Leadership, Division Directors, and/or Deputy Assistant Secretary level or above
  • Experience and knowledge preparing competitive bids for U.S. foreign assistance funding (USAID and U.S. Department of state in particular), including knowledge of key regulatory requirements
  • Documented track record of writing, designing and winning multi-million-dollar grants and contracts for USG or foreign donors in one or more of IRI’s key technical areas
  • Demonstrated knowledge and application of new business generation (strategy and pre-positioning) methodologies
  • Demonstrated knowledge and application of proposal development and management methodologies
  • Experience working in a collaborative environment and ability to work as part of a team
  • Superb organizational and facilitation skills
  • Excellent verbal and written communication skills
  • Ability to work under pressure and tight deadlines
  • Computer skills, especially advanced use of MS Word, Excel and other Office products




Primary Functions and Responsibilities

Business Development Planning

  • Assist in the development of and adherence to the business development overhead budget for each fiscal year relative to the Institute’s revenue goal.
  • Coordinate with the Director of Business Development to provide leadership on analysis of proposal data and overhead investment on business development efforts.
  • Monitor donor and sector-wide trends, as well as proposal feedback from funders, to disseminate amongst IRI staff as relevant, and assist with identifying changes to proposal process or approach based on the feedback.
  • Collaborate with Director of Business Development and other IRI teams to develop required tools and templates to comply with foreign funding proposal and contractual requirements, specifically FCDO and DFAT.
  • Support the Director of Business Development and Senior BD Specialist in the development of knowledge management systems.


Team Management and Oversight

  • Manage and supervise selected BD team members, including portfolio and task assignments, development of performance plans, monitoring and providing feedback to employees on work performance throughout the year.
  • Recruit and train new BD team staff.
  • Supervise subcontractors and consultants to ensure their adequate and timely performance, as needed.


Proposal Development

  • Oversee and refine as needed, proposal development processes to ensure smooth and efficient team performance both internally and with other divisions. This includes soliciting feedback from IRI staff (HQ and overseas staff) on an annual basis regarding desired support from Business Development team, suggested process improvements, etc.
  • Anticipate potential issues related to proposals, troubleshoot problems, and actively participate in their resolution through the provision and support of creative and immediate solutions.
  • Responsible for the compliant, on-time submission of all IRI proposals (excluding CEPPS).
  • Oversee BD staff in the tracking and identification of new business opportunities via,, SAMS Domestic, and other sites on a daily basis.
  • Lead discussions with appropriate staff to ensure timely Go/No-Go decisions to pursue a new funding opportunity, provide expertise on solicitation requirements.
  • Assign Business Development staff to specific bids and oversee their efforts and communication on proposals (e.g., kick-off guidance, timeline, coordination, design facilitation, writing, etc.).
  • Serve as a designated reviewer on select bids, in coordination with the Director of Business Development, to ensure the proposal package is compliant with and adheres to RFA/RFP requirements.
  • Negotiate with partners on teaming agreements, coordinate their review among pertinent teams (e.g., program, Grants, Finance, etc.), and attain signature from IRI leadership.
  • Coordinate with Evaluation and Learning Practice (ELP) leadership to ensure close collaboration and consistency in guidance from Business Development and ELP, including integration of lessons learned and tested IRI approaches into program design.
  • Work closely with the Director of Business Development to identify and develop new trainings and tools for the BD team and IRI staff related to new business and proposal development skills.
  • Lead the development of select, strategically important competitive bids, to include:
      • Serve as lead or supporting writer.
      • Serve as the proposal manager, leading the proposal team and facilitating the entire proposal process (i.e., the capture efforts, maintaining proposal schedules, overseeing the development of technical approach, and ensuring a proposal’s successful and compliant on-time submission).
      • Develop strategy, technical approach, and proposed results for specific proposals by liaising with other IRI technical experts as needed to draw on as much relevant knowledge and experience as possible to put together a winning offer.
      • Participate in the identification of partners and support pitch development for specific bids.
      • Facilitate and lead responsive yet innovative programmatic design concepts, and ensure they are meaningfully translated into written content.
      • Collaborate closely with IRI’s Cost Team to ensure cost proposals are responsive to the solicitation and to make sure all technical components are captured.
  • Oversee completion of internal-IRI after-action review of proposals and/or donor feedback.
  • Oversee or facilitate funder feedback sessions.



  • Network with business development professionals in peer organizations to generate new business or strengthen existing partnerships.
  • In coordination with the Director of Business Development, take the lead in developing and providing training for BD staff on best practices around creating pitches for IRI to present to potential partners for introduction and teaming opportunities.
  • In coordination with the Director of Business Development and Regional Division leadership, lead the development of bid-specific country and regional-level capture strategies.
  • Support and collaborate with the Director of Business Development and Senior BD Specialist in the development of IRI’s capture process and tools.
  • Provide training on how to use capture tools.
  • Serve as point of contact within the BD team with External Affairs team on communications strategy before, during, and after bid development for specific bids.

Application instructions

Please complete your profile and submit your cover letter and resume to IRI's website.