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Sacramento Municipal Utility District Senior Strategic Business Planner in Sacramento, California


Posting/Working Title:

Senior Strategic Business Planner


Enterprise Strategy

No. of Openings:



To lead in the performance of both short and long term strategic business planning balancing the experiences and needs of customers while also focusing on internal priorities, resources and objectives. Oversee long term strategies while also delivering value to the business through short term, actionable efforts. In doing so, clearly identifies SMUD’s current state, desired state, key steps required to reach the desired state, and the benefits to our customers and SMUD. Maintains a focus on customer experience excellence; ensures achievement of department results and goals that support SMUD strategic objectives

Nature and Scope

Serves as a technical or functional expert or consultant providing expertise and/or direction in one or more areas of a professional discipline and assumes responsibility for resolving complex problems and projects; may serve in a Lead role and assist in planning, coordinating, prioritizing, monitoring and evaluating the work results in assigned area and in selecting, training, motivating, evaluating and developing lower-level personnel.

Job Code:


Desirable Qualifications:

  • Ability to quickly adapt to changing priorities and manage ambiguity

  • Experience with strategic portfolio management; project management techniques; change management resources and techniques.

  • Experience with analytical approaches including statistical validation, variance analysis, testing causal relationships, root cause analysis, etc.

  • Experience with labor resource models (demand and capacity)

Base Salary Annual Low:


Base Salary Annual High:


Selection Process:

Initial Review, Video Interview, Follow-Up Interview, Reference Check, Background Check

Pay Scale Group:


Minimum Qualifications:

Education: Bachelor’s degree from an accredited college or university in Business, Marketing, Engineering, or related field (or equivalent experience). If no degree then eleven (11) years of experience is required.

Experience: Seven (7)+ years of progressively responsible relevant experience. Experience should include project management, business and/or budget planning and/or developing and monitoring business performance measures and metrics.

Knowledge Of: Customer experience concepts and experience working with others within SMUD to gather and summarize the potential market and/or impact of products, services, process improvements and/or construction projects as they relate to our customers; characteristics and operational needs of various organizational units; techniques and practices for problem research and resolution; principles and techniques of research and analysis; principles of performance measures development, application, planning and evaluation; principles of project management, cost accounting, work management and managerial reporting systems; interrelationships between SMUD’s operations and relevant external; principles and practices for contract management; principles and practices of budget preparation and administration; SMUD policies, procedures, applicable MOUs and other special agreements; principles and procedures of record keeping and filing; principles of business letter writing and basic report preparation; mathematical principles; office procedures, methods, and equipment including computers and applicable software applications such as word processing, spreadsheets, and databases; English usage, spelling, grammar, and punctuation.

Skill To: Manage multiple projects and planning processes of moderate complexity; analyze complex issues and develop/implement resolution alternatives; analyze procedures/systems and develop/implement operational improvements; analyze situations, documents and data for conformance to established policy and procedures; gather data from appropriate sources and identify relevant factors; interpret, clarify, understand and analyze verbal/written information and ideas; compile and prepare technical, statistical and/or analytical reports and presentations; independently prepare a variety of correspondence and memoranda; compile data, maintain records and files, and prepare administrative or technical reports; develop and implement new and revised policies and procedures to provide for the effective operation of the area of responsibility; develop, implement and maintain work procedures; plan, organize, prioritize and schedule projects; assist in budget preparation and administration; Achieve results through the efforts of other people; establish and maintain effective working relationships internally/externally; plan, organize, direct, and review the work of others; prepare performance plans and evaluations for employees; develop performance standards and accountability; operate office equipment including computers and supporting word processing, spreadsheet, and database applications; interpret and apply administrative and departmental policies and procedures; communicate effectively orally and in writing internally/externally; establish and maintain effective working relationships internally/externally.

Position Type:

Regular - Full Time

Physical Requirements:

Applicants must be able to perform the essential job functions with or without a reasonable accommodation.

The health and wellbeing of our employees and our community is our top priority. SMUD follows CDC guidance and adheres to all local, county and state orders. To this end, if you are scheduled to come on a SMUD campus, you will need to monitor your health (ensuring your temperature is below 100.4° and you’re free of COVID-19 symptoms), wear a face covering, and adhere to social distancing guidelines.

Major Duties & Responsibilities:

  • Leads and supports key business initiatives by overseeing the development of short and long term strategic and operational plans to drive and support implementation of customer programs, operational enhancements, product solutions, or other services to meet SMUDs strategic business objectives.

  • Oversees the establishment of 3-year strategic and/or operating plan for assigned unit. Coordinate the monthly forecast process, ensure “line of sight” between project outline and delivery. Use existing financial models and/or develop new models, spreadsheets or other techniques to analyze financial and business planning issues. Including researching and analyzing data to identify major drivers of performance, customer experience and interpret trends to develop, present, and implement value-added solutions to optimize resources and processes.

  • Define, review and monitor operational/program metrics; support requests for project maintenance and creation to ensure business alignment; collaborate with stakeholders to determine measures of success to ensure program/project changes benefits are realized; serves as a liaison between workgroup/business units to facilitate business needs.

  • Develop and support recommendations with accurate financial analysis and rigorous financial or economic theory. Review analyses, reports or other decision documents prepared by other contributors or stakeholders and provide comments or additional analyses to improve the overall quality of information provided to management.

  • Develop, prioritize and evaluate strategic customer initiatives including technology, energy technology and capital projects. Incorporate primary and secondary customer research to ensure that the voice of the customer is considered.

  • Oversee contract management for assigned area, ensure vendors are meeting SLA’s, evaluate contracts and determine if extensions or a new RFP is necessary to sustain business processes/needs.

  • Establish delivery tactics, budgets, key performance indicators and metrics within the planning framework for all initiatives to guide the implementation process. Work closely with implementation teams to track and adjust plans on an on-going basis to ensure a positive customer experience and ongoing success.

  • Partner with applicable stakeholders within and across business units and departments to ensure coordination, consistency, and continuity of planning processes and projects. Proactively focus attention on areas requiring attention.

  • Connect and coordinate with applicable external stakeholders including other utilities, research groups, policy groups, regulators, consortiums, other organizations at a regional and national level to provide input and insights on best practices, industry trends and opportunities for program or process improvements and new service options.

  • Provide clear, concise, and meaningful information and recommendations to management, including feasibility studies to define business opportunities and to gain approval for implementation of initiatives, and business justifications for approval that include the costs and benefits of alternative solutions and recommended solutions.

  • Perform other related duties as assigned.

Additional Posting Info for Candidate:

SMUD is committed to ensuring we're a workplace where diversity, equity and inclusion (DE&I), are part of who we are and how we do things. Supporting efforts that promote pay equality is part of that. Salary placement for the selected candidate will be determined in alignment with the California Equal Pay Act.

Sacramento Municipal Utility District (SMUD) - Who We Are

As the nation's sixth-largest community-owned electric service provider, we're proud of our reputation as one of the best places to work in Sacramento. Our employees tell us in our engagement surveys they're "Happy, satisfied and engaged" which helps create a workplace that best serves our customers.

Sacramento was named as the 2nd happiest place to work in America by Forbes Magazine. Lake Tahoe, San Francisco and the world-renowned Napa Valley are within easy driving distance of our locations.

Our Commitment to Diversity & Inclusion

SMUD respects, values and celebrates the unique attributes, characteristics and perspectives that make each person who they are. Diversity and inclusion are guiding principles to deliver a culture that reflects the broader values of the community and our customers. Our Board's policy for Employee Relation sets our commitment to developing and maintaining a high quality, inclusive workplace that engages and inspires employees to commit to SMUD's purpose, vision and values.

Why Sacramento, California?

The capitol of California, Sacramento is the state's sixth-largest city, and the 35th largest in the U.S. Local universities include California State University, University of the Pacific's McGeorge School of Law, and the University of California, Davis and several competitive community colleges. The UC Davis Medical Center, a world-renowned research hospital, is one of more than a dozen hospitals and shared services centers in the Sacramento region. Part of the agriculturally-rich Central Valley, Sacramento is at the forefront of the farm-to-fork food movement. Northern California is home to some of the country's top technology companies, including Google and LinkedIn, and a multitude of startups in many industries. Sacramento is home to the NBA Kings, the River Cats (AAA baseball), the Republic FC (soccer) and the San Francisco Giants, NBA Warriors and NFL 49er's aren't far away. Sacramento offers an affluent liberal arts community with Broadway, Mondavi Center, Crocker Museum and summer musical theater to name a few.


Residing within the Enterprise Strategy Business Unit, the Enterprise Prioritization Team is responsible for advising SMUD’s Chief Executive Officer, Chief Financial Officer, Chief Strategy Officer and executive leaders on evaluating, assessing, and prioritizing SMUD’s portfolio of work across the company. The team will focus on the development, implementation, communication, and monitoring of SMUD-wide enterprise priorities used to assess key strategic and operational business goals.

This team is accountable for the enterprise prioritization process, including the assessment of new work, strategic portfolio management, and the facilitation of investment decisions. The process encompasses all budget spending and all projects being executed enterprise wide. The team will ensure work and budgets are aligned to priorities, and that metrics are monitored to actively allocate funds appropriately. In addition, the team will be expected to manage the process with executives to make decisions on competing enterprise wide priorities – including documenting and communicating decisions to the rest of the organization for execution.

To support this work, the position requires proficiency in:

  • Business planning and economic assessments

  • Quantitative and qualitative analysis, including financial models and analytical approaches

  • Executive and Senior Management level communications

  • Resource management methodologies

This role is expected to be highly collaborative with all parts of the organization in order ensure there is transparency to the work being proposed and how it will integrate with our existing portfolio of work. This includes:

  • Collaboration with senior level management to understand the value of work and calibrate prioritization scoring

  • Ensuring alignment with Enterprise Strategy, Enterprise Risk, Budget, and Enterprise Performance areas

  • Engaging PMO Managers and Resource Managers to understand labor resource constraints

  • Understanding Executive level concerns and providing the appropriate level of information to resolve portfolio conflicts