what is a business development manager?

As a business development manager, you are part of the sales team and work with people inside and outside the organisation to create new business opportunities. Your job is offering proposals to new clients and building long-term relationships with the company's customers.

As part of the marketing team, you build sales leads, pitch to new prospects and develop a company's client list. You aim to push people through the sales funnel and sign them up as customers. Since you are the company's public face, you always convey professionalism to prospective and potential clients. Making the right decisions and using the best strategies can help you achieve strategic goals.

Business development managers spend most of their time generating new business opportunities and ensuring the peak performance of sales staff. Further, they need exceptional interpersonal and negotiation skills. Expertise in conducting research and developing business trends aids in sound decision-making. It helps steer the company toward growth opportunities. Collaborating well with others, especially the senior members of the sales and marketing teams, makes you more effective in your role.

Most industries rely on business development managers to generate new opportunities. You could work in the construction, manufacturing or mining industries. Business development managers are also joint in retail, finance and consultancy firms.

view jobs

average salary of a business development manager

Business development managers promote business growth. Hence, they earn competitive salaries. For instance, the average salary of a business development manager in Australia is $105,000 annually. Junior professionals in the role take home a base salary of $110,000 - $130,000 per year due to their minimal skills and work experience. As you gain experience, you earn over $150,000 - $170,000 per year.

The remuneration package often includes various benefits and allowances. Non-monetary benefits include annual sick leave and paid leave days. Some companies pay bonuses for exceptional performance.

what factors affect the salaries of business development managers?

Your role in the company and your position influence the salary and benefits you receive. When you work in top-level positions, your remuneration package rises with your seniority. For instance, you could be a senior marketing manager identifying new business opportunities. The industry you work in also determines your remuneration package. For example, suppose you work in finance and insurance companies. In that case, you are likely to earn more than business development managers in retail.

Want to know what you will earn as a business development manager? Check out what you are worth with our salary checker.

view salary

types of business development managers

The types of business development managers depend on the industry they work in, including:

  • construction business development managers: your job in construction is to look for new building projects on behalf of your employer. Apart from identifying new prospects, you ensure the projects meet the client's needs and develop relationships with all the construction project's stakeholders.
  • cybersecurity business development managers: you study trends and develop ways to improve computer systems' security. If your employer offers cybersecurity, you identify prospective clients in various industries.
  • financial services business development managers: you monitor the performance and upcoming trends in financial services and help your employer stay ahead in the sector. You also find new ways to reach existing markets.
group of employees having a meeting
group of employees having a meeting

working as a business development manager

The main objective of a business development manager is to promote business awareness, identify new markets and form new partnerships. Let's explore the additional responsibilities, work schedules and job outlook of the role.


education and skills

You require the following formal qualifications to become a business development manager:

  • bachelor's degree: to become a business development manager in Australia, pursue a bachelor's degree in economics, business, marketing or commerce after Year 12. The degree courses take three years of full-time study. However, shorter courses, such as a diploma in business, are available in VET.
  • work experience: a successful business development manager has extensive experience in sales, marketing or customer service roles. You can start with entry-level positions that help you develop your skills and expertise.

skills and competencies

Some of the qualities that will help you excel as a business development manager include:

  • self-motivation: as a business development manager, you should be goal oriented and self-motivated to drive the company to growth by meeting its performance goals. Self-motivation helps you stay focused on your goals and work efficiently.
  • interpersonal skills: as a BDM, you interact with many people inside and outside the company. For instance, when you connect with existing or potential clients, you always conduct yourself professionally. Interpersonal skills also help you work well with other professionals.
  • commercial acumen: you require commercial understanding to determine the best opportunities and partnerships to boost business growth. Commercial expertise helps you pursue the opportunities that are most likely to yield results.

FAQs about working as a business development manager

Here are the most asked questions about working as a business development manager:

thank you for subscribing to your personalised job alerts.