Job Title: Business Development Manager
Education: Daytona Beach Community College - no degree
Previous Experience: I started off as a bank branch manger and became familiar with Merchant Services through coworkers who were presenting the product to my customers. I became interested in it and applied for a job as a Merchant Services Sales Representative. After four years as a rep I was prompted to team leader then manager. I was recruited by my current company three years ago. They had heard about my success as a manager and wanted me to work for them to do the same.
Job Tasks: My company provides electronic payments processing for businesses. If a business sells a product or service and needs to be paid via credit card (MasterCard, Visa, American Express, Discover, Diners), debit cards (signature and PIN based), EBT (Electronic Benefits Transfer) or check my company sets them up with the technology required to make it happen. We install credit card processing terminals in retail stores as well as any other business that has a need to accept electronic payments. We also set up the credit card processing feature on compayn web-sites to enable the business to take a check or credit card without the customer being present.
It's important to remember that we do not issue credit cards, meaning that a customer cannot apply to have us send them a credit card to use at a business. We only deal with the businesses and process the credit card transactions.
We also process checks electronically. This is a fairly new concept in payments processing. If a customer needs to pay a business for goods or services they sometimes choose to pay by check. Traditionally, the business would then pay an employee to prepare a deposit ticket and travel to the bank and deposit the check. The business would then have to wait for the check to clear (can take up to 1 week) so it could use the money. Today, with the assistance of my company (and others like it) we can convert a paper check into an exectronic transaction, like a credit card transaction, right at the point of sale. This eliminates the need for the company to prepare a deposit and travel to the bank. The funds are also "typically" available within 48 hours.
My company also offers gift cards to businesses who would like to be able to sell them to their customers for future use.
Best and Worst Parts of the Job: The best part of my job is helping businesses understand the ever changing electronic payments industry. I like to take this very complicated process and explain it in a way where the average person can understand it enough to have their business benefit from our service. I also enjoy teaching business owners how to protect themselves from potential fraud and resulting financial losses.
The worst part is that many people in my industry do not take the time to explain the details to business owners. The typical sales people are just out to make a buck and don't care about the business owners like I do. Even though there are many reputable sales people in my industry, those unscrupulous sales people and their bad habits have given my entire industry a bad repuatation.
1. Make sure you subscribe to industry publications so you can keep up on this ever changing industry. Our technology and industry rules and regulations are constantly chaning.
2. Always be ethical. You reputation in this industry is crutial to your success. Since the industry is so competative it is important to have word of mouth referrals to keep you going.
3. Read your contracts and industry rules and regulations. As painful and boring as they can seem it is imperative that you know what you are asking your customers to sign. It is also important that you are able to answer their questions accurately.
Additional Thoughts: Research the merchant services company that you are considering working for. Ensure that they are ethical - you are known by the company you keep (and work for).
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