Development specialists work either in company human resources departments or as fundraising experts on behalf of their employers. Depending on which role they're fulfilling, they are responsible for training employees or encouraging participation with the company among their peers. Those who work in human resources are categorized as training and development specialists and those who work to raise funds for their employer as fundraising specialists. The former work within human resources to ensure that programs and activities are effectively training and assisting employees. By monitoring and analyzing these programs, development specialists can determine the best types of training to facilitate both employee and company success. Based on their findings, they design, develop and direct employee exercises, discussions, and simulations. They also prepare manuals for employee training.

Fundraising specialists raise money to assist their organizations. They concentrate on applying for grants and cultivating a donor base. Their expertise often lies in networking with potential donors as well as seeking out new ones. They also promote the organization's work or cause through literature and advertisements.

Training and development specialists earn $65,120 per year while fundraising specialists earn $61,610 per year, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. The BLS also predicts a 9% growth in development specialist roles between the years 2018 and 2028.

What Does a Development Specialist Do

There are certain skills that many development specialists have in order to accomplish their responsibilities. By taking a look through resumes, we were able to narrow down the most common skills for a person in this position. We discovered that a lot of resumes listed creativity, instructional skills and analytical skills.

Learn more about what a Development Specialist does

How To Become a Development Specialist

If you're interested in becoming a development specialist, one of the first things to consider is how much education you need. We've determined that 66.2% of development specialists have a bachelor's degree. In terms of higher education levels, we found that 15.0% of development specialists have master's degrees. Even though most development specialists have a college degree, it's possible to become one with only a high school degree or GED.

Learn More About How To Become a Development Specialist

Development Specialist Career Paths

Average Salary for a Development Specialist

Development Specialists in America make an average salary of $60,344 per year or $29 per hour. The top 10 percent makes over $96,000 per year, while the bottom 10 percent under $37,000 per year.
Average Development Specialist Salary
$60,344 Yearly
$29.01 hourly

What Am I Worth?


Roles and Types of Development Specialist

The role of a development specialist includes a wide range of responsibilities. These responsibilities can vary based on an individual's specific job, company, or industry.Here are some general development specialist responsibilities:

  • Establishes proposal development project plans, including timelines
  • Partner with corporate training manager, hrbp’s
  • Meet assigned targets for revenue volume, number of opportunities won,

There are several types of development specialist, including:

Training Coordinator


Training coordinators are responsible for the coordination and execution of training programs for companies and other organizations. Depending on their particular areas of specialization, the training coordinators may concentrate on logistical and preparation activities relating to training. Alternatively, the training coordinator may be directly involved with the execution. A training supervisor is expected to be active in organizing and implementing training in smaller organizations.

Training coordinators are employed by most businesses large enough to require internal training procedures. Work environments vary with the position, with some coordinators employed in a single office and others traveling to remote locations for training. Because of this, you may need to work late or overnight shifts or to work outside. However, you can make up a hefty pay working in this position that can be broken down to $14 per hour.

Many coordinators also need strong data analysis skills, as they are also responsible for interpreting and reporting data on training program performance. You are further expected to be proficient in both educational methods and the content of the training. A bachelor's degree is often preferred for these positions.

  • Average Salary: $46,698
  • Degree: Bachelor's Degree

Development Coordinator


Development Coordinators are tasked with organizing and implementing fundraising efforts and membership programs for a non-profit organization. They make fundraising plans, resolve logistical issues, and work with various departments. They also keep donors updated about what their donations are used for.

Development coordinators develop and implement strategies for enticing prospective donors to donate. Also, they acknowledge donations and manage the recording of relevant data like donation information and donor records. Development Coordinators work in non-profit organizations like universities, healthcare providers, environmental foundations, and more. They work majorly under the chief development officer.

The job requires a bachelor's degree with at least a year of related experience. Applicants must be conversant with fundraising software, communication systems, and Microsoft Office. They must also possess people, leadership, multitasking, communication, and decision-making skills. Development coordinators earn an average salary of $45,417 in a year. It varies between $34,000 and $60,000.

  • Average Salary: $51,688
  • Degree: Bachelor's Degree

Training Consultant


Training consultants are brought in to optimize the development and increase the productivity of a company's staff. They design training programs and teaching material and evaluate training practices already in place, making sure they align with the objectives of the company.

Working as a training consultant, you will assess the knowledge and skills of the staff and identify gaps where training would boost performance. Your job will be to set long term goals and create a learning schedule. You will organize and implement educational activities, applying appropriate learning methods to make sure your trainees are fully engaged. Evaluating the progress of your trainees will also be one of your tasks.

To land this position, you need experience in the field of human resources and a degree in education or human resource management. You will need to work your way up to be considered for the job and prove familiarity with corporate or traditional training and talent management. Being able to organize your time and communicate efficiently will be a must.

  • Average Salary: $56,760
  • Degree: Bachelor's Degree

States With The Most Development Specialist Jobs

Mouse over a state to see the number of active development specialist jobs in each state. The darker areas on the map show where development specialists earn the highest salaries across all 50 states.

Average Salary: Job Openings:

Number Of Development Specialist Jobs By State

Development Specialist Education

Development Specialist Majors

20.8 %

Development Specialist Degrees


66.2 %


15.0 %


11.5 %

Top Colleges for Development Specialists

1. University of Pennsylvania

Philadelphia, PA • Private

In-State Tuition




2. San Diego State University

San Diego, CA • Private

In-State Tuition




3. Northwestern University

Evanston, IL • Private

In-State Tuition




4. Boston University

Boston, MA • Private

In-State Tuition




5. University of Minnesota - Twin Cities

Minneapolis, MN • Private

In-State Tuition




6. Harvard University

Cambridge, MA • Private

In-State Tuition




7. University of Southern California

Los Angeles, CA • Private

In-State Tuition




8. George Washington University, The

Washington, DC • Private

In-State Tuition




9. University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill

Chapel Hill, NC • Private

In-State Tuition




10. Stanford University

Stanford, CA • Private

In-State Tuition




Top Skills For a Development Specialist

The skills section on your resume can be almost as important as the experience section, so you want it to be an accurate portrayal of what you can do. Luckily, we've found all of the skills you'll need so even if you don't have these skills yet, you know what you need to work on. Out of all the resumes we looked through, 7.9% of development specialists listed customer service on their resume, but soft skills such as creativity and instructional skills are important as well.

Choose From 10+ Customizable Development Specialist Resume templates

Zippia allows you to choose from different easy-to-use Development Specialist templates, and provides you with expert advice. Using the templates, you can rest assured that the structure and format of your Development Specialist resume is top notch. Choose a template with the colors, fonts & text sizes that are appropriate for your industry.

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Development Specialist diversity

Development Specialist Gender Distribution


After extensive research and analysis, Zippia's data science team found that:

  • Among development specialists, 59.5% of them are women, while 40.5% are men.

  • The most common race/ethnicity among development specialists is White, which makes up 60.3% of all development specialists.

  • The most common foreign language among development specialists is Spanish at 54.1%.

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Best States For a Development Specialist

Some places are better than others when it comes to starting a career as a development specialist. The best states for people in this position are New Jersey, Connecticut, New York, and Massachusetts. Development specialists make the most in New Jersey with an average salary of $77,530. Whereas in Connecticut and New York, they would average $76,777 and $76,035, respectively. While development specialists would only make an average of $70,637 in Massachusetts, you would still make more there than in the rest of the country. We determined these as the best states based on job availability and pay. By finding the median salary, cost of living, and using the Bureau of Labor Statistics' Location Quotient, we narrowed down our list of states to these four.

1. New Hampshire

Total Development Specialist Jobs: 353
Highest 10% Earn:
Location Quotient:

2. Maryland

Total Development Specialist Jobs: 1,293
Highest 10% Earn:
Location Quotient:

3. Michigan

Total Development Specialist Jobs: 1,328
Highest 10% Earn:
Location Quotient:
Full List Of Best States For Development Specialists

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Top Development Specialist Employers

We've made finding a great employer to work for easy by doing the hard work for you. We looked into employers that employ development specialists and discovered their number of development specialist opportunities and average salary. Through our research, we concluded that Boys & Girls Clubs of America was the best, especially with an average salary of $36,516. Praxair follows up with an average salary of $94,811, and then comes Gordon Food Service with an average of $53,410. In addition, we know most people would rather work from home. So instead of having to change careers, we identified the best employers for remote work as a development specialist. The employers include DLA Piper, Cigna, and Tenet Healthcare

Most Common Employers For Development Specialist

RankCompanyAverage SalaryHourly RateJob Openings
1BNY Mellon$120,564$57.9641
3American Red Cross$98,385$47.3035
6Ortho Clinical Diagnostics$79,033$38.0059
9Raytheon Technologies$66,698$32.0788
10CDA Council$59,470$28.5949

Development Specialist Videos

Becoming a Development Specialist FAQs

How Do I Become A Learning And Development Specialist?

To become a learning and development specialist, you'll need the right educational background, identify any transferable skills, develop your presentation and teaching skills, and look into earning optional certification(s).

How Much Does A Professional Development Specialist Make?

A professional development specialist makes, on average, $55,220 ($27 an hour). The range in pay for a professional development specialist starts from as little as $28,000 to as much as $80,000 a year. Factors such as location and company type impact how much they can earn.

What Degree Do You Need To Become A Child Development Specialist?

The degree you need to become a child development specialist is a four-year bachelor's degree in Applied Psychology with a concentration in Child Advocacy. Some child development specialists earn master's degrees or even doctorate degrees, which may be required for more advanced positions.

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