Policy manager


Policy managers are responsible for managing the development of policy programs and ensuring that the strategic objectives of the organization are met. They oversee the production of policy positions, as well as the organization’s campaign and advocacy work in fields such as environmental, ethics, quality, transparency, and sustainability.

Other titles

The following job titles also refer to policy manager:

technical services manager
policy advocacy coordinator
policy advocacy manager
business ethicist
compliance coordinator
policy coordinator
sustainability manager
advocacy coordinator
environmental policy manager
ethics manager
compliance director

Minimum qualifications

Bachelor’s degree is generally required to work as policy manager. However, this requirement may differ in some countries.

ISCO skill level

ISCO skill level is defined as a function of the complexity and range of tasks and duties to be performed in an occupation. It is measured on a scale from 1 to 4, with 1 the lowest level and 4 the highest, by considering:

  • the nature of the work performed in an occupation in relation to the characteristic tasks and duties
  • the level of formal education required for competent performance of the tasks and duties involved and
  • the amount of informal on-the-job training and/or previous experience in a related occupation required for competent performance of these tasks and duties.

Policy manager is a Skill level 4 occupation.

Policy manager career path

Similar occupations

These occupations, although different, require a lot of knowledge and skills similar to policy manager.

business intelligence manager
strategic planning manager
regulatory affairs manager
environmental protection manager
environmental policy officer

Long term prospects

These occupations require some skills and knowledge of policy manager. They also require other skills and knowledge, but at a higher ISCO skill level, meaning these occupations are accessible from a position of policy manager with a significant experience and/or extensive training.

Essential knowledge and skills

Essential knowledge

This knowledge should be acquired through learning to fulfill the role of policy manager.

Organisational policies: The policies to achieve set of goals and targets regarding the development and maintenance of an organisation.
Business analysis: The research field which addresses the identification of business needs and problems and the determination of the solutions that would mitigate or prevent the smooth functioning of a business. Business analysis comprises IT solutions, market challenges, policy development and strategic matters.
Corporate social responsibility: The handling or managing of business processes in a responsible and ethical manner considering the economic responsibility towards shareholders as equally important as the responsibility towards environmental and social stakeholders.
Strategic planning: The elements defining the foundation and core of an organisation such as its mission, vision, values, and objectives.

Essential skills and competences

These skills are necessary for the role of policy manager.

Integrate strategic foundation in daily performance: Reflect on the strategic foundation of companies, meaning their mission, vision, and values in order to integrate this foundation in the performance of the job position.
Monitor company policy: Monitor the company’s policy and propose improvements to the company.
Advise on efficiency improvements: Analyse information and details of processes and products in order to advise on possible efficiency improvements that could be implemented and would signify a better use of resources.
Develop company strategies: Envision, plan, and develop strategies for companies and organisations aimed at achieving different purposes such as establishing new markets, refurbishing the equipment and machinery of a company, implementing pricing strategies, etc.
Ensure compliance with policies: Ensure compliance with legislation and company procedures in respect of health and safety in the workplace and public areas. Ensure awareness and compliance with all company policies in relation to health and safety and equal opportunities in the workplace.

Optional knowledge and skills

Optional knowledge

This knowledge is sometimes, but not always, required for the role of policy manager. However, mastering this knowledge allows you to have more opportunities for career development.

Sas language: The techniques and principles of software development, such as analysis, algorithms, coding, testing and compiling of programming paradigms in SAS language.
Continuous improvement philosophies: Underlying ideas of quality management systems. Implementation process of lean manufacturing, Kanban, Kaizen, Total Quality Management (TQM) and other continuous improvement systems.
Environmental policy: Local, national and international policies dealing with the promotion of environmental sustainability and the development of projects which reduce negative environmental impact and improve the state of the environment.
Accounting department processes: The different processes, duties, jargon, role in an organisation, and other specificities of the accounting department within an organisation such as bookkeeping, invoices, recording, and taxing.
Business management principles: Principles governing business management methods such as strategy planning, methods of efficient production, people and resources coordination.
Financial products: The different types of instruments that apply to the management of cash flow that are available on the market, such as shares, bonds, options or funds.
International trade: The economic practise and study field that address the exchange of goods and services across geographic borders. The general theories and schools of thought around the implications of international trade in terms of exports, imports, competitivity, GDP, and role of multinational companies.
Patents: The exclusive rights granted by a sovereign state to an inventor’s invention for a limited period of time in exchange for the public disclosure of the invention.
Business intelligence: The tools used to transform large amounts of raw data into relevant and helpful business information.
Engineering principles: The engineering elements like functionality, replicability, and costs in relation to the design and how they are applied in the completion of engineering projects.
Airport environmental regulations: The official regulations for environmental standards in airports as dictated by national codes for planning airport facilities and related developments. These include regulatory aspects which govern noise and environmental aspects, sustainability measures, and impacts in relation to land use, emissions, and wildlife hazard mitigation.
Data mining: The methods of artificial intelligence, machine learning, statistics and databases used to extract content from a dataset.
Intellectual property law: The regulations that govern the set of rights protecting products of the intellect from unlawful infringement.
Financial department processes: The different processes, duties, jargon, role in an organisation, and other specificities of the financial department within an organisation. Understanding of financial statements, investments, disclosing policies, etc.
Banking activities: The broad and continuously growing banking activities and financial products managed by banks ranging from personal banking, corporate banking, investment banking, private banking, up to insurance, foreign exchange trading, commodity trading, trading in equities, futures and options trading.
Waste management: The methods, materials and regulations used to collect, transport, treat and dispose of waste. This includes recycling and monitoring of waste disposal.
Law enforcement: The different organisations involved in law enforcement, as well as the laws and regulations in law enforcement procedures.
Operations department processes: The different processes, duties, jargon, role in an organisation, and other specificities of the operations and manufacturing department within an organisation such as purchasing, supply chain processes, and goods handling.
Pollution legislation: Be familiar with European and National legislation regarding the risk of pollution.
Government policy: The political activities, plans, and intentions of a government for a legislative session for concrete causes.
Risk management: The process of identifying, assessing, and prioritising of all types of risks and where they could come from, such as natural causes, legal changes, or uncertainty in any given context, and the methods on dealing with risks effectively.
Environmental legislation: The environmental policies and legislation applicable in a certain domain.
Project management: Understand project management and the activities which comprise this area. Know the variables implied in project management such as time, resources, requirements, deadlines, and responding to unexpected events.
Pollution prevention: The processes used to prevent pollution: precautions to pollution of the environment, procedures to counter pollution and associated equipment, and possible measures to protect the environment.
Statistics: The study of statistical theory, methods and practices such as collection, organisation, analysis, interpretation and presentation of data. It deals with all aspects of data including the planning of data collection in terms of the design of surveys and experiments in order to forecast and plan work-related activities.
Environmental threats: The threats for the environment which are related to biological, chemical, nuclear, radiological, and physical hazards.
Marketing department processes: The different processes, duties, jargon, role in an organisation, and other specificities of the marketing department within an organisation such as market research, marketing strategies, and advertising processes.
Management department processes: The different processes, duties, jargon, role in an organisation, and other specificities of the management and strategy department within an organisation such as strategic processes and general management of the organisation.
Quality standards: The national and international requirements, specifications and guidelines to ensure that products, services and processes are of good quality and fit for purpose.
Public health: The principles of health and sickness affecting the population, including the means for health promotion and prevention and community and primary care.
Business process modelling: The tools, methods and notations such as Business Process Model and Notation (BPMN) and Business Process Execution Language (BPEL), used to describe and analyse the characteristics of a business process and model its further development.
Statistical analysis system software: Specific software system (SAS) used for advanced analytics, business intelligence, data management, and predictive analytics.
Wildlife projects: Wildlife and animal conservation projects, which aim to protect and preserve ecosystems and habitats of a wide range of animals under threat from urbanisation.
Sales department processes: The different processes, duties, jargon, role in an organisation, and other specificities of the sales department within an organisation.
Legal department processes: The different processes, duties, jargon, role in an organisation, and other specificities of the legal department within an organisation such as patents, legal cases, and legal compliance.
Human resources department processes: The different processes, duties, jargon, role in an organisation, and other specificities of the human resources department within an organisation such as recruitment, pension systems, and personnel development programs.
Tax legislation: Tax legislation applicable to a specific area of specialisation, such as import tax, government tax, etc.
Corporate law: The legal rules that govern how corporate stakeholders (such as shareholders, employees, directors, consumers, etc) interact with one another, and the responsibilities corporations have to their stakeholders.
Copyright legislation: Legislation describing the protection of the rights of original authors over their work, and how others can use it.
Financial jurisdiction: Financial rules and procedures applicable to a certain location, whose regulatory bodies decide on its jurisdiction
Sales strategies: The principles concerning customer behaviour and target markets with the aim of promotion and sales of a product or a service.
Health and safety regulations: Necessary health, safety, hygiene and environmental standards and legislation rules in the sector of particular activity.
Company policies: The set of rules that govern the activity of a company.
Supply chain management: The flow of goods in the supply chain, movement and storage of raw materials, work-in-process inventory, and finished goods from point of origin to point of consumption.
Data models: The techniques and existing systems used for structuring data elements and showing relationships between them, as well as methods for interpreting the data structures and relationships.

Optional skills and competences

These skills and competences are sometimes, but not always, required for the role of policy manager. However, mastering these skills and competences allows you to have more opportunities for career development.

Perform business research: Search and collect information relevant for the development of businesses in different fields ranging from legal, accounting, finance, up to commercial matters.
Ensure compliance with environmental legislation: Monitor activities and perform tasks ensuring compliance with standards involving environmental protection and sustainability, and amend activities in the case of changes in environmental legislation. Ensure that the processes are compliant with environment regulations and best practices.
Gather technical information: Apply systematic research methods and communicate with relevant parties in order to find specific information and evaluate research results to assess the information’s relevance, relating technical systems and developments.
Prepare licence agreements: Make the legal contract ready, granting permission to use equipment, services, components, applications and intellectual property.
Advise on mining environmental issues: Collaborate with engineers, surveyors, geotechnical staff and metallurgists, involved in environmental protection and land rehabilitation after mining activities.
Identify suppliers: Determine potential suppliers for further negotiation. Take into consideration aspects such as product quality, sustainability, local sourcing, seasonality and coverage of the area. Evaluate the likelihood of obtaining beneficial contracts and agreements with them.
Integrate headquarter’s guidelines into local operations: Understand and implement the guidelines and objectives provided by the headquarters of a company into the local management of a company or subsidiary. Adapt guidelines to the regional reality.
Ensure compliance with legal requirements: Guarantee compliance with established and applicable standards and legal requirements such as specifications, policies, standards or law for the goal that organisations aspire to achieve in their efforts.
Coordinate airport environmental policies: Direct and coordinate airport environmental policies and regulations to mitigate impact of airport activities e.g. noise, reduced air quality, heavy local traffic, or the presence of hazardous materials.
Disseminate internal communications: Disseminate internal communications using the different communication channels that a company has at its disposal.
Manage budgets: Plan, monitor and report on the budget.
Enforce financial policies: Read, understand, and enforce the abidance of the financial policies of the company in regards with all the fiscal and accounting proceedings of the organisation.
Imprint visionary aspirations into the business management: Integrate ambition and visionary plans in both the planning and the day-to-day operations in order to set goals for the company to strive for.
Perform business analysis: Evaluate the condition of a business on its own and in relation to the competitive business domain, performing research, placing data in context of the business’ needs and determining areas of opportunity.
Perform data analysis: Collect data and statistics to test and evaluate in order to generate assertions and pattern predictions, with the aim of discovering useful information in a decision-making process.
Develop organisational policies: Develop and supervise the implementation of policies aimed at documenting and detailing the procedures for the operations of the organisation in the lights of its strategic planning.
Analyse scientific data: Collect and analyse scientific data resulting from research. Interpret these data according to certain standards and viewpoints in order to comment on it.
Contact scientists: Listen, reply, and establish a fluid communication relationship with scientists in order to extrapolate their findings and information into a varied array of applications including business and industry.
Interpret business information: Retrieve and analyse different kinds of information with regards to the management of a business in order to draw conclusions on projects, strategies, and developments.
Organise business documents: Put together documents coming from the photocopier, the mail, or the daily operations of businesses.
Lead managers of company departments: Collaborate and guide the managers of the departments of a company in terms of the objectives of the company, the actions, and expectations required from their managerial scope.
Provide feedback on job performance: Provide feedback to employees on their professional and social behaviour in the work environment; discuss results of their work.
Create advocacy material: Design compelling content such as blog posts, messaging or social media campaigns in order to influence political, economic or social decisions.
Use consulting techniques: Advise clients in different personal or professional matters.
Use different communication channels: Make use of various types of communication channels such as verbal, handwritten, digital and telephonic communication with the purpose of constructing and sharing ideas or information.
Manage business knowledge: Set up structures and distribution policies to enable or improve information exploitation using appropriate tools to extract, create and expand business mastery.
Identify undetected organisational needs: Use the collected input and information from interviewing stakeholders and analysing organisational documents in order to detect unseen needs and improvements that would support the development of the organisation. Identify the needs of the organisation in terms of staff, equipment, and improvement of operations.
Process commissioned instructions: Process instructions, usually oral ones, provided by managers and directives on actions required to be made. Take note, inquire, and take action on the commissioned requests.
Support managers: Provide support and solutions to managers and directors in regards with their business needs and requests for the running of a business or the daily operations of a business unit.
Liaise with government officials: Consult and cooperate with government officials who handle matter that is relevant to you or your business.
Ensure compliance with company regulations: Guarantee that employees’ activities follow company regulations, as implemented through client and corporate guidelines, directives, policies and programmes.
Meet the requirements of legal bodies: Ensure the practice methods and procedures used are in compliance with the regulations and requirements of the legal governing authority in the field.
Manage advocacy strategies: Oversee and lead processes of a strategic advocacy plan. This includes brainstorming regularly with the team about plan formulation.
Develop environmental policy: Develop an organisational policy on sustainable development and compliance with environmental legislation in line with policy mechanisms used in the field of environmental protection.
Implement environmental action plans: Apply plans that address the management of environmental matters in projects, natural site interventions, companies, and others.
Evaluate performance of organisational collaborators: Evaluate the performance and results of managers and employees considering their efficiency and effectivity at work. Consider personal and professional elements.
Gather feedback from employees: Communicate in an open and positive manner in order to assess levels of satisfaction with employees, their outlook on the work environment, and in order to identify problems and devise solutions.
Carry out environmental audits: Use equipment to measure various environmental parameters in order to identify environmental problems and investigate manners in which they can be resolved. Perform inspections in order to ensure compliance with environmental legislation.
Deliver business research proposals: Compile information aimed at impacting positively the bottom line of companies. Investigate and present finding of high relevance for the decision-making process.
Promote organisational communication: Promote and nurture the efficient spread of plans and business information throughout the organisation by strengthening the channels of communication at its disposal.
Communicate with banking professionals: Communicate with professionals in the field of banking in order to obtain information on a specific financial case or project for personal or business purposes, or on behalf of a client.
Advise on communication strategies: Provide companies and organisations with consulting services concerning their internal and external communication plans and their representation, including their presence online. Recommend improvements in communication and make sure that important information reaches all employees and that their questions are answered.
Implement operational business plans: Implement the strategic business and operational plan for an organisation by engaging and delegating to others, monitoring progress and making adjustments along the way. Evaluate the extent to which strategic objectives have been achieved, learn lessons, celebrate success and recognise people’s contributions.
Apply strategic thinking: Apply generation and effective application of business insights and possible opportunities, in order to achieve competitive business advantage on a long-term basis.
Analyse legislation: Analyse the existing legislation from a national or local government in order to assess which improvements could be made and which items of legislation could be proposed.
Monitor compliance with licensing agreements: Ensure that licensee is well aware of all terms, legal aspects and renewal aspects of the license that has been awarded.
Improve business processes: Optimise the series of operations of an organisation to achieve efficiency. Analyse and adapt existing business operations in order to set new objectives and meet new goals.
Analyse environmental data: Analyse data that interpret correlations between human activities and environmental effects.
Advise on financial matters: Consult, advise, and propose solutions with regards to financial management such as acquiring new assets, incurring in investments, and tax efficiency methods.
Manage import export licenses: Ensure the effective issuing of permits and licenses in import and export processes.
Keep updated on innovations in various business fields: Be informed and acquainted with innovations and trends in different industrial and business fields for application in business development.
Update licenses: Update and display all necessary licenses as required by regulatory agencies.
Follow the statutory obligations: Understand, abide by, and apply the statutory obligations of the company in the daily performance of the job.
Promote environmental awareness: Calculate the carbon footprint of business processes and other practices in order to promote sustainability and to raise awareness for the environmental impact.
Track key performance indicators: Identify the quantifiable measures that a company or industry uses to gauge or compare performance in terms of meeting their operational and strategic goals, using preset performance indicators.
Coordinate waste management procedures: Coordinate the operations of a facility or organisation which deal with the management of waste, such as waste collection, sorting, recycling, and disposal, in order to ensure optimal efficiency of operations, improve methods for waste reduction, and ensure compliance with legislation.
Implement strategic management: Implement a strategy for the development and transformation of the company. Strategic management involves the formulation and implementation of the major objectives and initiatives of a company by senior management on behalf of the owners, based on consideration of available resources and an assessment of the internal and external environments in which the organisation operates.
Analyse supply chain strategies: Examine an organisation’s planning details of production, their expected output units, quality, quantity, cost, time available and labour requirements. Provide suggestions in order to improve products, service quality and reduce costs.
Analyse the context of an organisation: Study the external and internal environment of an organisation by identifying its strengths and weaknesses in order to provide a base for company strategies and further planning.
Advise on legal decisions: Advise judges, or other officials in legal decision-making positions, on which decision would be right, compliant with the law and with moral considerations, or most advantageous for the adviser’s client, in a specific case.
Create a work atmosphere of continuous improvement: Work with management practices such as continuous improvement, preventive maintenance. Pay attention to problem solving and teamwork principles.
Impart business plans to collaborators: Diffuse, present, and communicate business plans and strategies to managers, employees making sure that objectives, actions, and important messages are properly conveyed.
Develop revenue generation strategies: Elaborate methodologies through which a company markets and sells a product or service to generate income.
Advise on environmental remediation: Advise on the development and implementation of actions which aim to remove sources of pollution and contamination from the environment.
Design advocacy campaigns: Create campaigns to support the realization of political, economic or social changes.
Advise on tax policy: Advise government officials on changes in tax policies and procedures, and the implementation of new policies on a national and local level.
Develop licensing agreements: Compose the conditions and terms related to assigning limited use rights for properties or services.
Identify legal requirements: Conduct research for applicable legal and normative procedures and standards, analyse and derive legal requirements that apply to the organisation, its policies and products.
Conduct field work: Conduct field work or research which is the collection of information outside of a laboratory or workplace setting. Visit places in order to collect specific information about the field.
Coordinate environmental efforts: Organise and integrate all environmental efforts of the company, including pollution control, recycling, waste management, environmental health, conservation and renewable energy.
Interpret technical requirements: Analyse, understand and apply the information provided regarding technical conditions.
Recommend product improvements: Recomend product modifications and process improvements.
Manage project metrics: Gather, report, analyse and create key metrics for a project to help measure its success.
Monitor customer behaviour: Oversee, identify and observe the evolution of the customer’s needs and interests.
Liaise with politicians: Liaise with officials fulfilling important political and legislative roles in governments in order to ensure productive communication and build relations.
Get involved in the day-to-day operation of the company: Collaborate and perform hands-on work with other departments, managers, supervisors, and workers in different aspects of the business from preparing accounting reports, envisioning the marketing campaigns up to having contact with clients.
Provide improvement strategies: Identify root causes of problems and submit proposals for effective and long-term solutions.
Define organisational standards: Write, implement and foster the internal standards of the company as part of the business plans for the operations and levels of performance that the company intends to achieve.
Develop environmental remediation strategies: Develop strategies for the removal of pollution and contaminants from soil, groundwater, surface water, or sediment, taking into account environmental remediation regulations and available technologies.
Train employees: Lead and guide employees through a process in which they are taught the necessary skills for the perspective job. Organise activities aimed at introducing the work and systems or improving the performance of individuals and groups in organisational settings.
Provide legal advice: Provide advice to clients in order to ensure that their actions are compliant with the law, as well as most beneficial for their situation and specific case, such as providing information, documentation, or advice on the course of action for a client should they want to take legal action or legal action is taken against them.
Analyse enforceability: Examine the client’s present situation, ideas and wishes under a legal perspective to assess their legal justification or enforceability.
Assess groundwater environmental impact: Estimate environmental impact of groundwater abstraction and management activities.
Align efforts towards business development: Synchronise the efforts, plans, strategies, and actions carried out in departments of companies towards the growth of business and its turnover. Keep business development as the ultimate outcome of any effort of the company.
Supervise advocacy work: Manage the aim to influence political, economic and social decisions. Make sure ethics and policies are followed.
Liaise with managers: Liaise with managers of other departments ensuring effective service and communication, i.e. sales, planning, purchasing, trading, distribution and technical.
Analyse production processes for improvement: Analyse production processes leading toward improvement. Analyse in order to reduce production losses and overall manufacturing costs.
Revise drafts made by managers: Revise drafts made by managers in order to check completeness, accuracy, and formatting.
Report on environmental issues: Compile environmental reports and communicate on issues. Inform the public or any interested parties in a given context on relevant recent developments in the environment, forecasts on the future of the environment, and any problems and possible solutions.
Ensure products meet regulatory requirements: Study, implement, and monitor the integrity and compliance of products with the required regulatory aspects by law. Advise on applying and abiding by regulations on the product and manufacturing regulations.
Make strategic business decisions: Analyse business information and consult directors for decision making purposes in a varied array of aspects affecting the prospect, productivity and sustainable operation of a company. Consider the options and alternatives to a challenge and make sound rational decisions based on analysis and experience.
Implement strategic planning: Take action on the goals and procedures defined at a strategic level in order to mobilise resources and pursue the established strategies.
Advise on waste management procedures: Advise organisations on the implementation of waste regulations and on improvement strategies for waste management and waste minimisation, to increase environmentally sustainable practices and environmental awareness.
Perform market research: Gather, assess and represent data about target market and customers in order to facilitate strategic development and feasibility studies. Identify market trends.

ISCO group and title

1213 – Policy and planning managers





  1. Policy manager – ESCO
Last updated on August 8, 2022

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