How To Become A Business Development Manager In Australia?

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Students want to know how to become business development managers (BDM) in Australia.


Are you driven, self-motivated, and good at building connections? Then a Business Development Manager career could be for you.


Business Development Managers understand a business and its operational capabilities and then plot and implement strategies that ensure growth and revenue generation.


To become a business development manager in Australia, you need extensive experience and a university or VET qualification in administration and business management.


This blog will help you to learn the steps to pursue this profession in Australia. It covers the BDM duties, the skills you need to succeed, available career advancement options, qualifications, courses, the average salary to expect at each stage on the career path, and how you can become one in Australia.



1. What Is Business Development?


Business development refers to building long-term value for an organisation from markets, relationships, and customers. It is about generating new opportunities, building brand awareness, and enabling a business to thrive.



2. What Is A Business Development Manager?


A Business Development Manager determines when, where, how, and why a company will flourish. They track new trends, make product recommendations, suggest strategic partnerships, and design long-term growth strategies.


Business Development Managers play the strategic opportunist role for companies to help them grow internally and externally by increasing their profits, expanding their business, or cementing new business relationships.


Moreover, these professionals develop partnerships with existing clients and prospective customers to find potential leads, identify new opportunities, and help their company grow.



3. What Does A Business Development Manager Do in Australia?


A Business Development Manager is a senior role that involves duties and responsibilities to achieve short and long-term business goals.


Here are the most common duties and tasks involved in this job: 


  • Outline long-term strategic goals and strategies

  • Write, present, and implement strategies and business proposals for market expansion and financial growth.

  • Plan marketing initiatives to attract new customers and enhance the value of relationships with existing customers.

  • Grow client base

  • Write business proposals

  • Negotiate with stakeholders

  • Respond to tender opportunities

  • Research business opportunities  

  • Identify sales leads, and acquire new clients to increase sales and maximise profits.

  • Follow industry trends locally and globally.

  • Draft contract agreements and reports 

  • Report on business areas that require improvements

  • Work closely with the sales team, marketing staff, and department managers to identify and map customer needs and business strengths.

  • Maintain up-to-date knowledge of market conditions and new clients on the scene.

  • Liaise with clients often to determine services, products, and solutions that meet clients' needs and ensure they stay optimistic and satisfied.

  • Ascertain local and international industry trends.

  • Visits regular and potential client businesses to identify and act on selling opportunities

  • Maintain good working relationships and enhance client retention and new sales via referrals and references

  • Attend networking events, conferences, and exhibitions.



4. Business Development Manager Skills



Hard Skills


  • Good knowledge of Business Development, Economics or Finance, and Marketing

  • Strong technical skills, including MS Office, a CRM database, analysis software, and related software and tools their company use

  • In-depth understanding of business products and solutions and value proposition

  • Knowledge of designing and implementing business development and sales strategies to serve the company and clients and improve business sales



Soft Skills


  • Quick learner 

  • Enjoys gaining new business knowledge

  • High-level communication skills

  • Proven ability to negotiate

  • Efficient 

  • Stakeholder and project management skills

  • Organised

  • Confidence

  • Persuasive to convincing conversions

  • Leadership

  • Analytical thinking

  • Creative mindset

  • Self-motivated

  • Professionalism

  • Able to work with limited supervision

  • Teamwork and collaboration skills

  • Adaptability skills

  • Able to form relationships with new people

  • Able to work to and exceed targets

  • Conflict resolution abilities

  • Work ethic



5. What Qualifications Does A Business Development Manager Need?


To become a Business Development Manager in Australia, you need a combination of education and industry experience.


  • Obtain your Senior Secondary School Certificate in English, Maths, and computer 

  • Complete a 3-year full-time bachelor's degree in business, economics, commerce, finance, marketing, or a related field, such as Bachelor of Business, Bachelor of Commerce, or Bachelor of Marketing.


Those looking for a shorter course can consider a VET qualification like a Certificate IV in Business and a Diploma of Business (Business Development) (BSB50120). These courses are part of traineeships to help develop more experience and knowledge.


  • You also need work experience in customer servicesales, and marketing. A previous track record of meeting sales targets will be an advantage when applying for Business Development Manager role.
  • Take courses to refine your skills, such as marketing, research, presentation, public relations, confidence, persuasion, and sales planning.



6. Steps To Become A Business Development Manager In Australia


Here are the steps to pursue this role in Australia:



Step 1: Obtain A Business Administration Degree


Business Development Managers working in larger organisations usually have industry-specific qualifications like a bachelor's degree in business administration, finance, marketing, accounting, communications, sales and marketing, entrepreneurship or a related field.


You can start with an introductory 12-18 months course such as Certificate IV in Business Sales or the Diploma of Customer Engagement and go on to complete an online Diploma of Business (Business Development).


Likewise, it is not necessary to have a master's degree, but having it will improve your value to prospective employers if you plan to join the upper management of the company's business development team.



Step 2: Gain Industry Experience 


Consider enrolling in internships or applying for entry-level business development positions to get relevant industry exposure.


Previous experience in a professional environment in marketing, technology, and sales, such as a sales representative and account executive, is preferred. It sharpens your communication, negotiation, and rapport-building skills and helps identify business challenges and find solutions.



Step 3: Work On Technical and Soft Skills Relevant To This Role


You need soft and technical skills to enter and succeed in the business development management profession.


You should be self-motivated and possess strong organisational and communication skills to effectively communicate with customers and colleagues and reach specific targets with minimal supervision.


Consider taking courses to improve your technical skills, such as CRM databases, marketing automation platforms, project management, business presentation software, communication and collaboration software, MS Office (especially Word, Excel, and PowerPoint) and G-Suite.



Step 4: Get Certified


Although not mandatory, earning certifications is a powerful way to demonstrate your seriousness toward working as a business development manager.


Here are the most common certification programs available for BDMs:


  • 12-month Certificate of Professional Sales - Australian Online Courses

  • Project Management Professional - Australian Institute of Project Management

  • Project Management Institute Certified Practising Marketer – Australian Marketing Institute



Step 5: Create A Convincing Resume


Armed with the necessary qualifications and work experience, you are ready to apply for business development manager jobs. Customise your resume to align with the job requirements. 


List the strategic skills and business knowledge you have learned that match the job post to become more likely to land a BDM role.


Reach out to online and offline sources such as print media, online job portals, and social media like LinkedIn to find and apply for relevant business development manager jobs.


National Resources:




7. How Much Do Business Development Managers Make In Australia?


The Business Development Manager has a highly valued position in every company. Irrespective of the industry, these professionals earn an impressive income.


Like other occupations, a business development manager's salary is determined based on their years of experience, qualifications, soft and technical skills, expertise, work location, industry, and organisation's responsibilities.


If the company's pay structure includes a commission or offers a percentage of monthly sales to employees, then the base salary might be below the average business development manager's salary.


So, what is the average salary for a BDM? According to PayScale, the average business development manager's salary in Australia is AU$79,686 per year, or an hourly equivalent of AU$30.90.



Average Salary Based on Experience


  • Entry-level Business Development Managers (<1-year experience): AU$61,769 per year

  • Early career Business Development Managers (1-4 years of experience): AU$72,561 per year 

  • Mid-career Business Development Managers (5-9 years of experience): AU$82,634 per year 

  • Experienced Business Development Managers (10-19 years of experience): AU$91,481 per year 



Location-Wise Salary of Business Development Manager


  • Melbourne: $107,399 per year

  • Sydney: $105,576 per year

  • Adelaide: $128,291 per year

  • Perth: $112,131 per year

  • Canberra: $103,069 per year

  • Brisbane: $102,761 per year



8. Business Development Courses In Australia


Here we have listed some of the most sought-after courses that offer a range of subject options with practical learning experiences.


The following business development manager courses enhance your understanding of organisational planning and improve your sales and marketing, team leading, and relationship management skills.


Not just do they help prepare you for a management role and boost candidature, but it unlocks the secret of establishing a successful business or restructuring an operational business. 




9. Business Development Manager Working Conditions


BDMs work mostly indoors in an office environment. They also occasionally travel to attend face-to-face meetings with their clients. Based on the employers, these professionals may also work remotely from home or distant locations.



10. Where Do Business Development Managers Work?


Business development manager jobs are available in B2B corporations, retailers, and wholesalers, in a wide range of industries, including banking and finance, healthcare, and manufacturing.



11. Job Outlook Of Business Development Manager In Australia


ANZSCO Occupation Group: 225212 ICI Business Development Managers.


Almost every large company requires BDMs to analyse operations and provide process structures and strategic planning. 


They are vital for companies to generate new revenue by identifying new markets, nurturing relationships with clients, building new relationships, growing the brand's presence, and improving customer satisfaction.


Business development management is a competitive field that attracts professionals from various backgrounds. Currently, the demand for professionals in this field is high in the private sector, with more than 50 per cent of employees employed in the financial, healthcare, and manufacturing industries.


New South Wales and Victoria are the two states with the largest share of employment.



Working Arrangements


Around 95% of employed ICT Business Development Managers work full-time for an average of 44 hours per week.



Major Industries For Employment


  • Professional, Scientific, And Technical Services: 57.4%

  • Information Media And Telecommunications: 12.6%

  • Wholesale Trade: 11.7%

  • Retail Trade: 4.6%

  • Other Industries: 9.1%



Percentage of Employment Across Australia


  • New South Wales: 43.4%

  • Victoria: 31.0%

  • Queensland: 12.6%

  • South Australia: 3.6%

  • Western Australia: 6.9%

  • Tasmania: 0.4%

  • Northern Territory: 0.1%

  • Australian Capital Territory: 2.1%



Worker's Age and Gender Profile


  • The average age of ICT Business Development Managers is 40 years, and most of them are between 35 to 44 years. 

  • Females constitute 18% of the workforce. (Average of all other jobs - 48%)



12. Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)



What Is The Business Development Manager's Career Path?


The journey of a Business Development Manager usually starts with an entry-level "Business Development Representative" job. In this role, the professional contacts prospective customers to identify business leads, book sales appointments, and handle complaints.


With experience, they move to a senior role as "Assistant Business Manager" (ABM), wherein they work under a Business Development Manager and manage a team of business development executives to ensure all the executives effectively meet their targets within the stipulated time frame.


Once they build adequate experience as an ABM, they get promoted to senior managerial roles, such as Business Development Manager. They manage individual customers and their teams and create strategic opportunities to facilitate innovation and ensure business growth.


They directly report to the business branch manager about their team's daily work and interact with business development leaders to discuss innovative strategies for business development.



Is BDM A Good Job?


A business development manager is at the forefront of addressing the roadblocks to growth in an organisation. The customer-focused role involves attending industry events and conferences while nurturing contacts and listening to customers' opinions.


The Business Development Manager job description in Australia has three core areas:


  • Marketing and Sales: Contact potential partners and clients to get new sales leads.


  • Business Partnerships: After gaining a partnership, you monitor contract drafting and term agreements between the client and your company and close the deal.


  • Strategic Planning: You help companies to diversify and expand their business and brand in a specific territory.


The above business development manager's roles and responsibilities are highly valued and are in high demand across many sectors, particularly by businesses that aim to diversify, expand, and improve their position in the local/regional/global market to achieve financial growth. 



How Many Years Does It Take To Become A Business Development Manager?


Formal qualifications like a relevant Bachelor's or Postgraduate degree in business and management, including 3-5 years of sales or marketing work experience, are highly desirable in this career. It takes about 6 to 8 years to become a successful BDM in Australia.



What Is The Next Position After Business Development Manager?


A Business Development Manager lies at the top of the business development hierarchy in any organisation.




What Is The Highest Position In Business Development? 


The Business Development Manager or Sales Manager is the highest position in business development. The entire business development function has different job roles.



13. Conclusion


Business development managers are responsible for promoting and selling a company's products and services and ensuring the timely achievement of all business development objectives and targets. They play a vital role in a company's long-term survival and success.


If the role interests you, follow the above steps to get qualified and make an impactful start in this profession.


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