Business Operations Vs. Business Development: What's the Difference?

Discover the key differences between business operations and business development in this informative article.

Posted May 23, 2024

Table of Contents

Business Operations vs. Development: The Basics

What is Business Operations (BizOps)?

Business operations refer to the daily activities that keep your business running smoothly and efficiently. When you optimize these processes, you can align your business operations with your overall business strategy and analytics, leading to increased revenue and profitability. Effective business operations are essential for sustainable growth, as they help minimize costs, improve productivity, and ensure high-quality products and services. Understanding and enhancing business operations is key to achieving long-term success and maximizing market potential.

Key Responsibilities

  • Improving Net Promoter Score (NPS)
  • Improving Customer Satisfaction Score
  • Budget planning
  • Revenue forecasting and data analysis
  • Employee training and development
  • Strategic planning
  • Customer service
  • Risk management

Key Skills Required

  • Analytical thinking
  • Problem-solving
  • Troubleshooting abilities
  • Cross-functional collaboration
  • Project management experience
  • Technical proficiency
  • Business competence

Common Job Titles in Business Operations

  • Chief Operating Officer (COO)
  • Business Operations Manager
  • Operations Analyst
  • Operations Coordinator
  • Process Improvement Specialist
  • Supply Chain Manager
  • Quality Assurance Manager
  • Logistics Manager
  • Project Manager
  • Operations Director

What is Business Development (BizDev)?

Business development (BizDev) is a critical function focused on driving growth and creating new opportunities for a company. BizDev involves identifying and pursuing new markets, building strategic partnerships, and developing long-term business strategies. By leveraging market research and analysis, business development professionals work to expand the company's reach and increase revenue. Whether through forming alliances, exploring new revenue streams, or enhancing customer relationships, BizDev plays a vital role in the overall business strategy and success of an organization.

Key Responsibilities

  • Market research and analysis
  • Strategic planning
  • Sales strategy and execution
  • Product development
  • Financial planning and management
  • Performance monitoring

Key Skills Required

  • Sales skills
  • Communication skills
  • Marketing skills
  • Business intelligence
  • Negotiation and persuasion
  • ROI and data analysis
  • Research analysis
  • Project management

Common Job Titles in Business Development

  • Business Development Executive
  • Business Development Consultant
  • Business Development Manager
  • Partnership Manager
  • Business Development Director
  • Vice President of Business Development
  • Market Development Manager
  • Sales Development Representative
  • Client Relations Manager
  • Corporate Development Manager

The Primary Differences Between BizOps and BizDev

While business development and business operations are both crucial to a company's success, they have different focuses. BizDev aims to identify new opportunities and expand the business, while BizOps ensures the company runs efficiently and delivers high-quality products or services. Business development teams typically engage in external activities like networking and forming partnerships. In contrast, many business operations teams focus on internal activities such as production and logistics. These differences highlight how each function contributes uniquely to the overall success of the company. Let’s break down the differences of each below:


BizDev primarily focuses on external growth opportunities. Its scope involves targeting new markets and expanding the customer base, with an emphasis on strategic partnerships and collaborations that drive growth. In contrast, BizOps concentrates on internal efficiency and operational excellence. Its scope includes enhancing internal processes, managing resources, and ensuring smooth operations.


The objectives of BizDev and BizOps also differ significantly. BizDev aims to drive revenue growth through identifying and capitalizing on new business opportunities. This function is crucial for improving the company’s market position and competitive edge, as well as for fostering innovation by discovering new product or service opportunities. On the other hand, BizOps focuses on operational efficiency, ensuring that the company runs effectively and efficiently. This involves maintaining high-quality standards in products and services and managing costs to ensure financial sustainability.


In terms of activities, BizDev engages in networking to identify potential clients and partners, conducts market research to uncover new opportunities, and develops and implements sales strategies to acquire new customers. Additionally, BizDev is responsible for establishing and nurturing strategic partnerships and alliances that can drive the company’s growth. Conversely, BizOps focuses on process optimization, analyzing and improving business processes for greater efficiency. It also manages supply chain and logistics to ensure timely delivery of products and services, monitors key performance indicators (KPIs) to assess operational performance, and allocates resources effectively to meet operational demands.

So, What’s the Same?

Despite their distinct focuses, Business Development (BizDev) and Business Operations (BizOps) share several commonalities that contribute to the overall success of a company. Both functions aim to enhance the company's performance and ensure its long-term sustainability. They are driven by strategic goals that align with the company's vision and objectives, requiring a deep understanding of the market and industry dynamics. Collaboration is key in both areas; business development and operations teams often work closely with other departments, such as marketing, finance, and product development, to ensure that their strategies are effectively implemented. Both functions rely heavily on data analysis and performance metrics to make informed decisions and continuously improve their processes.

How Business Operations and Development Work Together

Business development and operations play vital roles in a company's success. Business development teams scout for growth opportunities, while operations teams ensure the company can seize them. In essence, business development sparks demand, and operations meet it. For instance, if a new market opportunity arises, operations step in to secure resources and optimize processes for efficient delivery. This may involve streamlining production processes, optimizing logistics, and managing the supply chain to ensure seamless delivery of products or services to the new market. That’s how they drive the company forward.

Which Career Path is Better?

Choosing between business development and business operations depends on individual strengths and career goals. If you’re having a hard time figuring out what’s best for you or what career path to choose, here’s a guide to help you.

You might be better suited to business operations if you…

  • Enjoy optimizing processes and improving efficiency
  • Have a strong attention to detail and are methodical in your approach
  • Prefer working on internal projects and systems
  • Excel at managing resources and logistics
  • Are interested in ensuring high-quality standards in products and services
  • Like monitoring and analyzing performance metrics
  • Thrive in roles that focus on cost management and operational excellence

You might be better suited to business development if you…

  • Love identifying new opportunities and markets
  • Have excellent networking and relationship-building skills
  • Enjoy strategic thinking and planning for growth
  • Are motivated by sales and revenue generation
  • Thrive in dynamic, outward-facing roles
  • Have strong negotiation skills and enjoy forming partnerships
  • Are passionate about innovation and expanding the business footprint

Reach Your Dream Job With the Help of a Coach

Unlock your potential and reach your dream job with the guidance of a skilled coach. Whether you're navigating the complexities of BizOps or charting a course in BizDev, a coach can provide invaluable support and expertise. With personalized strategies tailored to your career goals, you'll gain the insights and confidence needed to thrive in either field. Invest in yourself and take the next step towards achieving success in Business Operations or Business Development today.

Read next:

Browse hundreds of expert coaches

Leland coaches have helped thousands of people achieve their goals. A dedicated mentor can make all the difference.

Browse Related Articles