1. Home: Explore careers
  2. Sales manager

Sales manager

Alternative titles for this job include

Sales managers organise, coach and lead teams of sales representatives to work towards agreed targets.

Average salary (a year)

£22,000 Starter


£70,000 Experienced

Typical hours (a week)

38 to 40 a week

You could work

evenings / weekends attending events or appointments

How to become

Explore the different ways to get into this role.

How to become a sales manager

You can get into this job through:

  • a university course
  • an apprenticeship
  • applying directly
  • training with a professional body


You could do a degree before joining a company as a graduate management trainee. Employers recruit graduates from a range of subjects. Particularly relevant subjects include:

  • sales and marketing management
  • business management
  • retail marketing

For some jobs, like selling hi-tech scientific or engineering equipment, employers may prefer you to have a qualification in that field.

Entry requirements

You'll usually need:

  • 2 to 3 A levels, or equivalent, for a degree

More Information


You could complete a sales executive higher apprenticeship before applying for a trainee manager job.

For sales manager roles selling to businesses, you could do a business to business sales professional degree apprenticeship.

Entry requirements

You'll usually need:

  • 4 or 5 GCSEs at grades 9 to 4 (A* to C) and A levels, or equivalent, for a higher or degree apprenticeship

More Information

Direct Application

You'll need experience in sales and a record of achieving targets. Most employers will consider your sales and management experience, market knowledge and track record to be more important than your academic qualifications.

You could also be considered for specialist sales management jobs if you have a background in designing or manufacturing the products your team are selling.

Other Routes

You could take a professional qualification like:

  • Level 4 Award in Managing a Sales Team
  • Level 4 Award in Finance for Sales Managers
  • Level 4 Award in Operational Sales Planning

More Information

Career tips

In some jobs you could travel around the world to meet customers, so it may be helpful to speak a second language.

Further information

You can find out more about careers in sales through the Institute of Sales Professionals.

What it takes

Find out what skills you’ll use in this role.

What it takes

Skills and knowledge

You'll need:

  • excellent verbal communication skills
  • the ability to sell products and services
  • customer service skills
  • the ability to use your initiative
  • business management skills
  • leadership skills
  • to be flexible and open to change
  • the ability to accept criticism and work well under pressure
  • to be able to use a computer and the main software packages competently

What you’ll do

Discover the day to day tasks you’ll do in this role.

What you'll do

Day-to-day tasks

In your day-to-day duties you might:

  • recruit and train sales staff
  • allocate areas to sales reps
  • identify new business opportunities
  • develop sales strategies and set sales targets
  • provide feedback and coaching to team members
  • monitor the team's performance and motivate them to reach targets
  • compile and analyse sales figures
  • report back to senior managers
  • keep up to date with products and competitors

Working environment

You could work at a store, in an office, at a client's business or in a contact centre.

Career path and progression

Look at progression in this role and similar opportunities.

Career path and progression

With experience and a good track record, you could take on larger sales areas or be promoted to regional, national or international sales manager.

Current opportunities

Find apprenticeships, courses and jobs available near you.

Current opportunities

Apprenticeships In England

Sales Apprenticeship

  • Wage: £13,312.00 to £23,795.20 Annually

Sales Executive Apprentice

  • Wage: £13,312.00 Annually
  • Location: The Drift

Courses In England


  • Start date: 02 September 2024
  • Location: Beverley

Business, Sales and Marketing Level 3

  • Start date: 02 September 2024
  • Location: Bournemouth

Jobs In the United Kingdom

The Find a job service can help you with your search for jobs and send alerts when new jobs become available.

Skills assessment

Take an assessment to learn more about your skills and the careers that might suit you.

Is this page useful?

Yes No

Thank you for your feedback.

Thank you for your feedback. Click here if you'd like to let us know how we can improve the service.