A business development manager is required to work with sales staff and other key employees in order to grow existing sales accounts, develop customer relationships and secure new sales opportunities. Their ultimate goal is to maximise a company's revenues through business acumen and the development of client relationships.
Whilst there is no defined pathway into employment as a business development manager, recruitment agencies are usually looking for candidates with direct sales experience in their specific area of expertise. Many existing business development managers worked their way up to their positions via various sales roles. Quality degrees in related subjects are beneficial; however, relevant experience and a proven track record of success are the most important requirements.
The role of a business development manager requires quick thinking, an eye for detail and a proactive approach to achieving targets, and successful candidates will need to demonstrate these attributes to secure the best positions. Candidates will also need to demonstrate a knowledge of current trends in their respective industries, as well as the ability to persuade through effective communication.
Companies in the marketing, IT, manufacturing and retail industries are amongst the biggest employers of business development managers. The demand for experienced personnel in the UK waned somewhat during the financial crisis, but increasing consumer confidence has led to a relatively sudden increase in vacancies for talented motivated and experienced candidates. It is not unusual for large employers such as BAE Systems and Apple to pay business development managers up to £100,000 per year for their services. However, salaries of between £40,000 and £80,000 per year are more common.