Business Development Associate II

Duke University
January 19, 2023
Durham, NC
Job Type
Work Setting


The BDA II will demonstrate an in-depth knowledge of the Duke Clinical Research Institute (DCRI), including the capability to clearly articulate the role of an academic research organization (ARO), the role of the faculty, how we distinguish the DCRI from our competitors, and the value the DCRI brings to our customers. The BDA II will support national and international client relationships for clinical studies across all therapeutic areas by developing and facilitating the proposal/grant process for clients/sponsors. Responsibilities will include budget and pricing development, proposal writing, contract negotiations, and some involvement in coordinating client presentations.


Proposals and Proposal Revisions

  • Develop proposals and proposal revisions for investigator-initiated studies, industry-sponsored studies, government-sponsored studies, and studies sponsored by various foundations and professional associations.
  • Formulate proposals and proposal revision, under the direction of a Senior BDA, in conjunction with various DCRI functional groups, Clinical Research Organizations, Academic Medical Centers, Site Management Organizations, and Duke Therapeutic Departments.  Major components of the proposal development include the development of a budget and price estimate using standard models and development of well-written proposal text with corresponding assumptions, a compelling sales message, and a clear operational plan.
  • Review all materials provided (i.e. protocol or study synopsis, client assumptions and specifications, etc) and use this information appropriately to develop the proposal response.
  • Coordinate and lead an Operational Planning Team (OPT) meeting, including all the appropriate Functional Groups (FGs), to devise the strategy/plan to develop the proposal response.
  • Develop a budget and price estimate using the standard DCRI pricing model with the input of all the appropriate FGs,
  • Appropriately challenge internal proposal/grant development teams (functional group and faculty representatives) in operationalizing each budget in the most efficient and cost-effective manner.
  • Draft the narrative that ties the project components together.
  • Package and present the final proposal to the sponsor.
  • Communicate back to the DCRI internal groups the outcome of the negotiations/proposals; focus on conveying the expectations set forth for each group (i.e. clear details, critical timeframes, and expectations).

Grant Development

  • Work with the Principal Investigator (PI) and project personnel to submit grant applications/renewals to the sponsoring institution.
  • Coordinate grant development meetings (i.e. OPT meetings), working with participating functional groups to ensure the research is supported by an appropriate budget.
  • Collect salary and effort information for project personnel through communications with departmental business managers.
  • Develop budget and budget justification (to include detailed study assumptions) for input into Sponsored Projects Systems (SPS).
  • Collect ancillary grant materials, including the required biographical sketches and “other support” pages, resources pages, letters of support, consortium statements of intent, and all appendices.
  • Coordinate grant efforts with multiple subcontractors when applicable, including sites and other academic medical centers, to ensure the required budget documentation, letters of support, and other paperwork is received.
  • Communicate with the Office of Research Administration (ORA) to verify that assigned grants in SPS are reviewed, budgets and supporting documentation are complete and accurate, required internal forms are signed, and all grant materials are uploaded to grants.Duke (when applicable) and conform to the sponsoring institution’s application guidelines.
  • Upon grant award, update grant budgets upon award to match actual award notice.
  • Assist PI and study team in the development of the Research Plan (i.e., proposal) that includes a clear and executable operational plan.  (Refer to the description under “Proposals and Proposal Revision” for the expected responsibilities associated with the development of the Research Plan development.)


  • Develop changes in scope that accurately reflect all work to be performed outside the contracted scope of work.
  • Document and explain change to the sponsor using clear well-written text accompanied by a budget grid that clearly delineates the new work from contracted work.
  • For any work already completed that is outside the contracted scope of work, verify time tracking records correspond with effort provided by the F/Gs.

Financial/Contract Duties

  • Develop cash flow analysis to determine the financial status of the projects throughout their duration.  Using the cash flow analysis, work with Finance and other appropriate parties to determine the upfront payment needed.
  • Develop final scope of work (SOW) once the proposal has been approved by sponsor.
  • Participate in negotiations as part of the BD team, interacting with the sponsor after obtaining input and approvals as appropriate.
  • Review final contract to confirm everything is correct prior to execution.
  • Participate in the Executive Project Review meetings to review the financial status of projects, identify any possible changes in scope, and update Sr. Management on outstanding issues.

Client Management

  • Participate in and/or coordinate client visits.
  • Establish and maintain on-going client relationships to anticipate and resolve potential problems.

Other Duties

  • Using the DCRI Enterprise Project Management (EPM) system, track and report on the status of all assigned proposals and change orders.
  • Support other Business Development Team members and participate in activities as needed.
  • Attend industry trade shows and man the exhibit booth as needed.
  • Perform other related duties incidental to the work described herein.

Minimum Qualifications


  • Bachelor's Degree in business, science or other related discipline or Associate's Degree and related experience


  • Three years experience in research and development arena (pharmaceutical company, CRO, etc.).
  • Prefer experience in proposal generation, review, and/or sponsor negotiation.
  • Experience must include at least six proposals to non-commercial sponsors valued at $3M+ each in direct costs and in assisting in the preparation of at least 2 multi-centered proposals
  • Excellent oral and written communication skills
  • Excellent interpersonal skills
  • Analytical, problem solving, and negotiation skills
  • Knowledge of clinical trials process
  • Familiarity with NIH grant procedures
  • Willingness to travel (approximately 10% travel)
  • Excellent organizational, planning and prioritization skills
  • Willingness to attend training courses and trade shows (writing/editing courses, grants management courses, excel courses, industry trade shows, etc.).
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