Sales and Marketing Employment Insights Series: Business Development Manager

Hunter Campbell’s Sales and Marketing Insights Series offers a comprehensive look into roles within the sector. Leveraging our specialised recruitment market knowledge, we provide valuable insights into the roles currently in demand, shedding light on market trends, salaries, and sought-after skills.

In today’s article Bethany Taplin, Consultant at Hunter Campbell shares her expertise on the role of a Business Development Manager – a pivotal role for businesses on a growth trajectory.

So, what exactly does a Business Development Manager do?
A Business Development Manager is primarily responsible for proactively seeking new business opportunities, driving customer growth, and expanding the business’s portfolio to increase revenue streams. This is done through effective market analysis, research, cold calling and executing regular sales call cycles.  Operationally they will be responsible for submitting quotes, proposals, responses to RFPs and conducting presentations and product demonstrations.

What are the key performance indicators (KPIs) for a Business Development Manager?
The success of a BDM is measured through KPIs such as revenue/customer growth, sales conversion rate, market share expansion, profit margins, and proposal win rate.

Transferability of Skills Across Industries:
Capable BDMs or true ‘hunters’ of new business will have highly transferable skills.  However, the soft skills of a BDM like resilience, adaptability and effective communication are crucial and transcend industry and category boundaries. Additionally, proficiency in data analysis, reporting, and financial acumen enhances the BDM’s ability to craft compelling narratives and assess business viability across different sectors.

Key Skills and Qualifications:
BDMs need a diverse skill set, including client relationship management, stakeholder engagement, networking, market research, strategic planning, negotiation, and closing skills.

Experience trumps qualifications in this space.  A junior BDM does not typically need a tertiary degree or diploma.

Softer Skills for Success:
Beyond technical expertise, successful BDMs exhibit softer skills like a natural hunting instinct, inquisitiveness, a ‘thinking outside the box’ mentality, fearlessness, strong communication, enthusiasm, organisation, and innovation.

Recruitment Forecast and Career Prospects
Post election the industry is witnessing a growing demand for BDMs with a pre-Christmas focus on hiring. BDMs in demand are those who can combine a proactive, hands-on approach with analytical prowess, particularly in industrial, FMCG and technical sectors. Startups and scale-ups are showing a keen interest in creating BDM roles to drive initial business development, with plans to expand sales teams as revenue grows. Career prospects include roles in sales management and more senior strategic positions.

Salary packages for BDMs vary based on experience. Entry-level positions may range from $55,000 to $65,000 base salary, while seasoned professionals with significant experience can command salaries between $100,000 and $160,000 base salary. Packages typically include a base salary, vehicle allowance or company vehicle, and a commission structure linked to key performance indicators, either monthly or quarterly.

The career trajectory for a BDM role often includes progression into Key Account Management of high-value accounts or sales management.

To provide a practical perspective, here are some examples of Business Development Manager roles recently filled by Hunter Campbell:

Lewis Road Creamery: Business Development Manager

Chep: Business Development Manager

United Flexible: Business Development Manager

Bell Gully: Business Development Advisor

Husqvarana: Senior Business Development Manager

Techbuyer: Sales Executive (Focusing on New Business)

Brown Brothers Engineering – Industrial BDM

As the business landscape continues to evolve, the role of a Business Development Manager remains a linchpin in driving growth and fostering lasting business relationships. If you are looking to hire a Business Development Manager, or looking for your next opportunity in this space, get in touch with Bethany to chat through these insights and available opportunities.

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