Members of the BDI are either enterprise federations, industry working groups or industry affiliated service providers.
They are the highest-level representative body for an industry or service group in the Federal Republic of Germany. This membership is voluntary. Direct membership of single businesses is not possible. The BDI board of directors decides about new applications for admission. The BDI supports the work of its member groups with diverse information about all fields of economic policy. It is the task of the BDI to focus the joint interests of its member associations and represent these in dealings with parliament and society. The BDI is financed by the contributions of its member associations. Currently, the BDI has 36 member associations, of which one is a working group, and represents the interests of 100,000 businesses with eight million employees.