Guest blog originally published on GerardSearch.com
COVID-19 has changed the way we live life, from the simplest of tasks to the way we function as a society. It has certainly changed the way we think about fundraising. As I connect with colleagues around the country, many are working hard to pivot their fundraising activities virtually. Many are also worried about having the funds to keep their doors open when things go back to the new normal. And moreover, many organizations are laying off staff to stay afloat. So, what does it all mean for the nonprofit job market?
Before COVID-19, the war for talent in the charitable sector was fierce. Front-line fundraisers, particularly at the major gift level, were in high demand and organizations were struggling to generate a qualified pool of applicants. The competition extended to entry level, specialized roles and senior leadership roles. It was a job seeker’s market…and it still is.
As the nonprofit sector pivots into new ways of doing fundraising and is faced with tremendous demand for dollars raised in uncertain times, savvy fundraisers are very much sought after. The initial shock of having to adjust to work from home, and even hire and onboard new staff from home, is starting to wear off. Organizations committed to fundraising success recognize the need for fundraising talent now more than ever and those with the fiscal certainty to weather the storm short-term are starting to look for new talent. While there is still a temporary ceasefire in the war for talent, it is about to be lifted.
COVID-19 is going to change the fundraising sector forever. While the principals of good, donor-centric fundraising are going stay the same, there will be new skill sets to be added: digital engagement, social media marketing and data analytics, to name a few. The coveted major gift fundraisers will remain in high demand with perhaps a twist on social media savviness and flexibility to work in highly ambiguous environments.
If you are a non-profit professional and wondering what’s next, or have been recently laid off:
- Rest assured, there will be many jobs available shortly.
- Upgrade your skills and stay on top of current trends.
- Embrace virtual networking.
If you are a nonprofit leader and hiring manager:
- Focus on donor relations!
- Maintain fundraising momentum and keep your fundraising staff.
- If you have the need for new fundraising roles and can afford it- hire now.
- Try new ways of fundraising and look for different skillsets in your new hires.
During the financial crisis in 2008-2009, many organizations experienced fiscal strain like today’s environment. What followed was a fundraising boom and an all-out war for talented nonprofit professionals. So here’s to history repeating itself, in a positive way!
Get ahead of the curve and connect with us today, we are always happy to chat about current trends for organizations and non-profit professionals.