3 tips for new school business managers

The role of a SBM is an important one, but vast, and with budgets stretched thinner due to COVID, and headteachers needing increasing amounts of support with their workload — the job scope is now ever more challenging to deliver.

If you’re an existing school business manager moving to a new school or a finance officer moving up through the ranks, it can be daunting to find your feet. Here are some tips to help you navigate your new role.


Ask for help

You have to remember that you’re still getting to know the school and any new school protocols, so it’s only natural you’ll need a bit of support and guidance. 

The remit for a SBM role is vast, as we’ve mentioned, so there’s a good chance you’ll need support from the wider admin team regularly. You can’t do everything yourself, and you need to realise that.


Keep learning

During the pandemic, many SBMs said they saw a shift in their usual responsibilities, for which they were unlikely to have been trained. These responsibilities included premises management and health and safety requirements. With the pandemic putting so much importance on school health and safety policies, they felt their knowledge just didn’t cut it. This, among other things, led to stress and exhaustion amongst the SBM community.

You can’t predict the future, but what this pandemic has taught many of us is that we need to be best prepared for the uncertain, whether that’s strengthening knowledge of policies and procedures, or making the transition from manual to digital communication.

Try and dedicate some of your time to strengthening your knowledge across the different aspects of school business management. This will give you peace of mind and the knowledge you’re doing the best job you can do.


Effectively manage your time

Although the SBM job stays the same whatever the school budget, figuring out new government policies and getting your head around health and safety, has meant working longer hours through COVID, which has negatively affected wellbeing.

Effective time management is crucial in any job role, so to make sure you’re as efficient as possible, it’s time to address this issue.


Here are three tips to effectively manage your time: 

  1. Let go of things you can’t control
  2. Use Microsoft’s 4D model to tackle email stress
  3. Focus on quality over quantity


Get more advice from our blog time-saving tips for school business managers.


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