Job Vacancies

SME Business Development Manager

Reports to: Director, Client Services

Working Arrangements: Full time preferred, part time arrangements can be considered

Duration: Until March 2019, then reviewed for possible extension/permanent position

The Materials Processing Institute is a not-for-profit research organisation which aims to be the globally recognised centre for the innovation, development and commercialisation of technology, for the challenges of advanced materials, low carbon energy and the circular economy. It does this through its expertise in materials science, processing and engineering, using its teams of engineers and scientists, and its state of the art laboratory, computing and pilot plant facilities. It works on innovation projects with the metals, mining, ceramics, advanced materials, chemicals and energy industries, and their supply chains, and has a track record of over 70 years in turning new ideas into commercialised technology suited to industry’s needs.

The Institute’s SME Technology Centre is the access point for SME companies and pre-starts to the Institute’s services. The SME TC provides a three-fold offering of technical services, business support, and funding support (coaching and signposting) through publicly funded support projects and commercial business. The SME TC also offers business accommodation including serviced offices, laboratory space and demonstrator / workshop space.

The main purpose of the job is to promote innovation in SMEs by locating and engaging SME clients into the Institute’s wide packages of SME support particularly through the programmes run by the SME TC. The successful candidate’s role will be to engage eligible SMEs onto the funded programmes and to generate commercial sales to SMEs more widely.

Key areas of responsibility are:

  • Locate, engage and register clients for the SME Technology Centre’s funded programmes, including ERDF programmes.
  • Identify new account opportunities and generate profitable sales of innovation services to SMEs ineligible for the funded programmes, to meet the sales targets.
  • Contribute to the development and implementation of the SME marketing plan, through multiple channels, including face to face, social media and other digital channels.
  • Manage existing accounts to meet the expectations of clients and account growth targets.
  • Develop and manage appropriate networks to maximise the exposure of the Institute to SMEs both regionally and nationally.
  • Identifying business services that will improve the marketability of the Centre’s offering and selecting suitable suppliers.
  • Manage relationships with strategic delivery partners and consortia on regional, national and international levels.

Personal attributes required are:

  • A strong track record of sales and commercial experience in selling technical services to SMEs, both to gain new clients and grow existing client accounts.
  • To have, or to be able to gain quickly, a strong understanding of the Institute’s technical, business and financial offer to clients, and its funded programmes, and to be able to articulate this to potential clients or tenants.
  • Experience of working on publicly funded programmes, preferably ERDF
  • A track record of conducting client diagnostics to identify client needs in order to develop support projects within funded programmes.
  • A highly competent networker with a well-established network of business clients, universities, local authorities and representative organisations across the region
  • Some exposure to a range of technologies and sectors, especially those relevant to the regional economy.
  • Strong teamworker.
  • Sufficient gravitas, confidence and business advisory experience to advise clients drawn from across the business spectrum from start-ups to mature larger businesses.

This role involves working on the Innovate Tees Valley and Tees Valley Business Compass Start Up projects, both of which are part funded by the European Regional Development Fund.

Competitive remuneration package including:

  • Salary circa £40k per annum
  • Annual Company Bonus
  • Generous company contributions to the Pension Scheme
  • Death in Service Benefit
  • Access to Private Health Insurance Scheme

Contract reviewed by April 2019 with a possible extension / offer of a permanent position


Application is by submission of a CV and covering letter.

Closing date: Friday 27th October 2017 

For further information, or to apply, please contact

Keith Newlove
Manager, Human Resources, Materials Processing Institute

Telephone 01642 382068

Materials Processing Institute
Eston Road
United Kingdom

Business Compass Startup ProgrammeEuropean Union - European Regional Development Fund