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Business development manager

Business development managers are responsible for driving business growth within a company. They develop a network of contacts to attract new clients, research new market opportunities and oversee growth projects, making sales projections and forecasting revenue, in line with projected income.

Average salary*




Typical hours per week


How to become a business development manager

While there are no formal qualifications needed to become a business development manager, there are several routes you could take to help you pursue this career. You could complete a university or college course, an apprenticeship or apply directly to an employer for work.

You should explore these routes to becoming a business development manager, to find out which is the right one for you. Although some of these options have certain qualification requirements, many employers are more interested in people who are enthusiastic, willing to learn and can follow instructions.

You may need a Construction Skills Certification Scheme (CSCS) card to work on a construction site.


You could complete an undergraduate degree in business development, business management, economics or accountancy, to develop your knowledge and become qualified for a career as a business development manager.

You’ll need 2 - 3 A levels, or equivalent, for an undergraduate degree.

Some construction companies run graduate schemes to help you gain the necessary work experience to become a business development manager after your studies.

College/training provider

While there are no formal qualifications needed to become a business development manager, having GCSEs (or equivalent) in maths and English at grade 4 or above would be beneficial for anyone considering this as a career, as the role requires a good standard of numeracy and literacy.

You could also undertake a college course in sales or business, to prepare you for becoming a business development manager.

If you are already working in a junior business management role, you could improve your knowledge by completing a Level 2 or Level 3 award in business development or sales.

You’ll need:


You could complete a degree apprenticeship in sales or business development to help you become a business development manager. 

You'll need 4 - 5 GCSEs at grades 9 to 4 (A* to C) and A levels, or equivalent, for a degree apprenticeship.

An apprenticeship with a construction firm is a good way into the industry. Apprenticeships are open to anyone over the age of 16. As an apprentice, you will be fully employed by your company and expected to work a minimum of 30 hours a week. Your time will be split between on-the-job experience and a college or training provider.


If you’re considering a job as a business development manager, you could apply to begin your career as an assistant or trainee within a construction company. As you become more experienced, your employer might offer training to help you progress in the role.

If you already hold GCSEs or A levels (or equivalent), or a degree, and have proven experience in sales or business management, you may be able to apply to an employer directly for a role as a business development manager.

Work experience

Work experience is essential to gaining employment within the construction industry. You could gain this at school, or by working weekends and holidays with a company or relative who works as a business development manager. Potential employers will always be pleased to see work experience listed on your CV.


Desirable skills which will be helpful for anyone looking to become a business development manager include: 

  • A drive to seek new business
  • Excellent telephone skills
  • Strong verbal and written communication 
  • Good IT skills
  • Initiative and good decision-making skills
  • Project management skills 
  • Strong organisational skills 
  • Strategic and analytical thinking skills
  • Ability to write reports.

What does a business development manager do?

Business development managers are primarily responsible for driving business growth, and duties vary on a day-to-day basis. Typical responsibilities include: 

  • Creating development plans and forecasting sales targets and growth projections
  • Identifying market opportunities through meetings, networking and other channels
  • Meeting existing and potential clients and building positive relationships
  • Liaising with colleagues to develop sales and marketing strategies
  • Preparing financial projections and sales targets
  • Attending events such as exhibitions and conferences
  • Preparing sales presentations and participating in sales meetings
  • Producing reports for management
  • Training business developers and sales colleagues
  • Working in a client’s business or in an office.

How much could you earn as a business development manager?

The expected salary for a business development manager varies as you become more experienced.

  • Newly trained business development managers can earn £28,000 - £30,000
  • Trained business development managers with some experience can earn £30,000 - £45,000
  • Senior, chartered or master business development managers can earn £45,000 - £70,000.*

Hours and salary depend on location, employer and any overtime you may do.

* Salaries have been collected from multiple industry sources


Check out the latest business development manager vacancies: 

As these are external websites, the number of vacancies related to your preferred role may vary. New opportunities will be posted as they come up.

Career path and progression

As a business development manager in the construction industry, you could progress into a role as a bid writer, and take on responsibility for preparing and writing commercial documents needed by companies to win new contracts.

As your experience and skills grow, you could move into a senior management role as a construction director and monitor all the work taking place on building projects.

Progression Opportunities

Explore the progression opportunities below

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