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Become A Business Development Engineer

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Working As A Business Development Engineer

  • Communicating with Persons Outside Organization
  • Selling or Influencing Others
  • Interacting With Computers
  • Establishing and Maintaining Interpersonal Relationships
  • Communicating with Supervisors, Peers, or Subordinates
  • Mostly Sitting

  • $93,000

    Average Salary

What Does A Business Development Engineer Do

Sales engineers sell complex scientific and technological products or services to businesses. They must have extensive knowledge of the products’ parts and functions and must understand the scientific processes that make these products work.

Duties

Sales engineers typically do the following:

  • Prepare and deliver technical presentations explaining products or services to existing and prospective customers
  • Confer with customers and engineers to assess equipment needs and to determine system requirements
  • Collaborate with sales teams to understand customer requirements and provide sales support
  • Secure and renew orders and arrange delivery
  • Plan and modify products to meet customer needs
  • Help clients solve problems with installed equipment
  • Recommend improved materials or machinery to customers, showing how changes will lower costs or increase production
  • Help in researching and developing new products

Sales engineers specialize in technologically and scientifically advanced products. They use their technical skills to explain the benefits of their products or services to potential customers and to show how their products or services are better than their competitors'. Some sales engineers work for the companies that design and build technical products. Others work for independent sales firms.

Many of the duties of sales engineers are similar to those of other salespersons. They must interest the client in buying their products or services, negotiate a price, and complete the sale. To do this, sales engineers give technical presentations during which they explain the technical aspects of the product and how it will solve a specific customer problem.

Some sales engineers, however, team with salespersons who concentrate on marketing and selling the product, which lets the sales engineer concentrate on the technical aspects of the job. By working as part of a sales team, each member is able to focus on his or her strengths and expertise. For more information on other sales occupations, see the profile on wholesale and manufacturing sales representatives.

In addition to giving technical presentations, sales engineers are increasingly doing other tasks related to sales, such as market research. They also may ask for technical requirements from customers and modify and adjust products to meet customers’ specific needs. Some sales engineers work with research and development (R&D) departments to help identify and develop new products.

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How To Become A Business Development Engineer

A bachelor’s degree is typically required to become a sales engineer. Successful sales engineers combine technical knowledge of the products or services they are selling with strong interpersonal skills.

Education

Sales engineers typically need a bachelor’s degree in engineering or a related field. However, a worker without a degree, but with previous sales experience as well as technical experience or training, sometimes holds the title of sales engineer. Workers who have a degree in a science, such as chemistry, or in business with little or no previous sales experience, also may be called sales engineers.

University engineering programs generally require 4 years of study. They vary in content, but all programs include courses in math and the physical sciences. In addition, most programs require developing strong computer skills.

Most engineering programs require students to choose an area of specialization. The most common majors are electrical, mechanical, or civil engineering, but some engineering departments offer additional majors, such as chemical, biomedical, or computer hardware engineering. However, some undergraduate programs offer a general engineering curriculum; students then specialize in a particular area either on the job or in graduate school.

Training

New graduates with engineering degrees typically need sales experience and training before they can work independently as sales engineers. Training covers general sales techniques and may involve teaming with a sales mentor who is familiar with the employer's business practices, customers, procedures, and company culture. After the training period, sales engineers may continue to partner with someone who lacks technical skills yet excels in the art of sales.

It is important for sales engineers to continue their engineering and sales education throughout their careers. Much of their value to their employers depends on their knowledge of, and ability to sell, the latest technologies. Sales engineers in high-technology fields, such as information technology and advanced electronics, may find that their technical knowledge rapidly becomes obsolete, requiring frequent retraining.

Advancement

Promotions may include a higher commission rate, a larger sales territory, or elevation to the position of supervisor or sales manager.

Important Qualities

Interpersonal skills. Strong interpersonal skills are a valuable characteristic for sales engineers, both for building relationships with clients and effectively communicating with other members of the sales team.

Problem-solving skills. Sales engineers must be able to listen to the customer’s desires and concerns, and then recommend solutions, possibly including customizing a product.

Self-confidence. Sales engineers should be confident and persuasive when making sales presentations. 

Technological skills. Sales engineers must have extensive knowledge of the technologically sophisticated products they sell in order to explain their advantages and answer questions.

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Business Development Engineer Jobs

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Business Development Engineer Career Paths

Business Development Engineer
Business Development Manager Senior Project Manager Senior Product Manager
Senior Product Marketing Manager
10 Yearsyrs
Business Development Manager Director Of Sales
Director Of Sales & Business Development
12 Yearsyrs
Business Development Manager Owner Director Of Sales
Director Of Global Sales
13 Yearsyrs
Project Manager General Manager Account Manager
Global Account Manager
9 Yearsyrs
Project Manager Regional Manager Regional Sales Manager
National Accounts Sales Manager
8 Yearsyrs
Project Manager Product Manager
Product Line Manager
8 Yearsyrs
Senior Project Manager Director Director Of Sales
Director, Strategic Accounts
13 Yearsyrs
Consultant Product Manager
Group Product Manager
7 Yearsyrs
Consultant Account Manager District Sales Manager
Division Sales Manager
8 Yearsyrs
Consultant Account Manager Regional Sales Manager
Central Region Sales Manager
11 Yearsyrs
Program Manager Product Manager District Sales Manager
Eastern Regional Sales Manager
10 Yearsyrs
Program Manager Marketing Manager Sales And Marketing Manager
Regional Sales And Marketing Manager
8 Yearsyrs
Program Manager Marketing Manager National Sales Manager
International Sales Manager
6 Yearsyrs
Business Developer Marketing Manager Marketing Program Manager
Sales Program Manager
7 Yearsyrs
Business Developer National Account Manager Global Account Manager
Global Sales Manager
9 Yearsyrs
Business Developer District Sales Manager Division Sales Manager
Technical Sales Manager
7 Yearsyrs
Senior Project Manager Director Of Professional Services
Director Of Sales Engineering
12 Yearsyrs
General Manager Territory Sales Manager Eastern Regional Sales Manager
North America Sales Manager
12 Yearsyrs
Product Marketing Manager National Sales Manager International Sales Manager
OEM Sales Manager
9 Yearsyrs
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Do you work as a Business Development Engineer?

Help others decide if this is a good career for them

Average Length of Employment
Sales Engineer 3.7 years
Marketing Engineer 2.9 years
Top Careers Before Business Development Engineer
Engineer 5.2%
Internship 4.9%
Manager 3.1%
Top Careers After Business Development Engineer
Consultant 6.3%
Owner 4.2%
Manager 3.6%
Buyer 3.1%

Do you work as a Business Development Engineer?

Business Development Engineer Demographics

Gender

Male

73.6%

Unknown

13.3%

Female

13.1%
Ethnicity

White

53.7%

Hispanic or Latino

15.0%

Asian

14.2%

Black or African American

10.0%

Unknown

7.1%
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Foreign Languages Spoken

Spanish

25.5%

Mandarin

9.8%

French

9.8%

Chinese

7.8%

Hindi

5.9%

Japanese

5.9%

Arabic

5.9%

Portuguese

3.9%

Persian

3.9%

Romanian

2.0%

Korean

2.0%

Bengali

2.0%

Russian

2.0%

Tamil

2.0%

Armenian

2.0%

Carrier

2.0%

Italian

2.0%

German

2.0%

Kannada

2.0%

Czech

2.0%
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Business Development Engineer Education

Schools

University of Phoenix

9.8%

Texas A&M University

6.5%

Purdue University

6.5%

University of Texas at Austin

6.5%

Georgia Institute of Technology -

5.4%

University of Illinois at Chicago

5.4%

Pennsylvania State University

5.4%

Michigan State University

5.4%

University of Florida

4.3%

North Carolina State University

4.3%

State University of New York Buffalo

4.3%

Rochester Institute of Technology

4.3%

University of Houston

4.3%

Clemson University

4.3%

Carnegie Mellon University

4.3%

Hult International Business School

4.3%

University of Maryland - College Park

4.3%

Miami University

3.3%

Arizona State University

3.3%

Bradley University

3.3%
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Majors

Business

23.0%

Mechanical Engineering

14.6%

Electrical Engineering

9.0%

Marketing

5.6%

Industrial Engineering

5.3%

Chemical Engineering

5.3%

Engineering And Industrial Management

4.8%

Civil Engineering

4.5%

Finance

4.5%

Management

3.7%

Engineering

3.4%

Project Management

2.6%

Computer Science

2.4%

Electrical Engineering Technology

2.1%

Mechanical Engineering Technology

1.9%

Petroleum Engineering

1.6%

Computer Engineering

1.6%

Environmental Control Technologies/Technicians

1.6%

International Business

1.3%

Industrial Technology

1.3%
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Degrees

Bachelors

43.4%

Masters

38.7%

Other

10.2%

Certificate

3.7%

Doctorate

2.2%

Associate

1.6%

Diploma

0.2%
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Job type you want
Full Time
Part Time
Internship
Temporary
Average Yearly Salary
$93,000
View Detailed Salary Report
$62,000
Min 10%
$93,000
Median 50%
$93,000
Median 50%
$93,000
Median 50%
$93,000
Median 50%
$93,000
Median 50%
$93,000
Median 50%
$93,000
Median 50%
$139,000
Max 90%
Best Paying Company
BP America
Highest Paying City
Carrollton, TX
Highest Paying State
Arkansas
Avg Experience Level
2.9 years
How much does a Business Development Engineer make at top companies?
The national average salary for a Business Development Engineer in the United States is $93,176 per year or $45 per hour. Those in the bottom 10 percent make under $62,000 a year, and the top 10 percent make over $139,000.

Real Business Development Engineer Salaries

Job Title Company Location Start Date Salary
Senior Marine Business Development Engineer Braemar Technical Services (Engineering), Inc. Houston, TX Sep 15, 2015 $202,000
Business Development Engineer Facebook, Inc. Menlo Park, CA Nov 26, 2015 $200,396
Business Development Engineer APR Energy LLC Jacksonville, FL Oct 01, 2012 $190,000
Senior Business Development Engineer Continental Resources, Inc. Oklahoma City, OK Oct 01, 2015 $160,000
Senior Business Development Engineer Continental Resources, Inc. Oklahoma City, OK Aug 28, 2015 $160,000
Senior Business Development Engineer Continental Resources, Inc. Oklahoma City, OK Nov 20, 2014 $160,000
Business Development Engineer IT & RD Services Pactera Technologies Na, Inc. Issaquah, WA Mar 10, 2015 $158,725
Technical Business Development Engineer (Sales-Cala) Alcatel-Lucent USA, Inc. (DBA Nokia) Plano, TX Dec 16, 2016 $156,000
Business Development Engineer Inmobi Inc. San Francisco, CA Sep 09, 2016 $145,000
Principal Business Development Engineer Robert Bosch LLC Palo Alto, CA Feb 25, 2016 $145,000
Business Development Engineer (Industry Expert) Keysight Technologies, Inc. Santa Rosa, CA Sep 21, 2016 $141,648
Business Development Engineer Fintech Consulting LLC DBA Aptask LLC Edison, NJ Jun 04, 2016 $131,726
Sales/Marketing/Business Development Engineer JDS Uniphase Colorado Springs, CO Oct 01, 2010 $130,250 -
$152,256
Business Development Engineer IXIA Santa Clara, CA Jan 01, 2010 $115,731 -
$132,018
Business Development Engineer (Industry Expert) Keysight Technologies, Inc. Santa Rosa, CA Sep 21, 2016 $115,440
Technical Business Development Engineer 3M Company Saint Paul, MN Oct 01, 2015 $114,962
Business Development Engineer Keysight Technologies, Inc. Santa Rosa, CA Oct 27, 2016 $114,336
Business Development Engineer Palantir Technologies Inc. Palo Alto, CA Jan 01, 2011 $114,000
Business Development Engineer Palantir Technologies, Inc. Palo Alto, CA Feb 01, 2011 $114,000
Sales/Marketing/Business Development Engineer, EXP Agilent Technologies, Inc. Santa Clara, CA Oct 01, 2010 $112,258 -
$142,500
Business Development Engineer IT & RD Services Hisoft Envisage, Inc. Bellevue, WA Oct 20, 2011 $100,000
Business Development Engineer-Latam Valerus Field Solutions LP Houston, TX Jan 16, 2014 $96,305
Business Development Engineer Co-Ax Technology Inc. Solon, OH Sep 16, 2016 $93,915
Business Development Engineer EZE Castle Software LLC, An EZE Software Group Company New York, NY Aug 28, 2016 $86,986 -
$95,000
Business Development Engineer (Latin America) Valerus Compression Services, L.P. Houston, TX Nov 02, 2011 $85,002
Application Business Development Engineer PDI Communication Systems, Inc. Springboro, OH Sep 20, 2014 $85,000
Project & Business Development Engineer GSE Systems, Inc. Sykesville, MD Jan 28, 2013 $85,000

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Top Skills for A Business Development Engineer

  1. Business Development
  2. Market Share
  3. New Clients
You can check out examples of real life uses of top skills on resumes here:
  • Represented Business Development in cross-market technology for priority setting and impact analysis.
  • Communicated effectively resulting in developing new clients to identify needs and evaluate alternative business solutions.
  • Project Management-crisis management, project pay applications, job cost management.
  • Garnered additional OEM/ end user recurring /sustaining engineering / aftermarket parts and service opportunities.
  • Focused on quality customer service from product concept stage to mass production, ensuring customer satisfaction and retention.

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Top 10 Best States for Business Development Engineers

  1. Washington
  2. Colorado
  3. Virginia
  4. New Hampshire
  5. Arizona
  6. South Dakota
  7. Delaware
  8. Texas
  9. California
  10. Maryland
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