Recession Changing the Structure of the Fundraising Profession

A new U.K. survey finds that the recession has had a profound effect on employment within the fundraising sector. Measures introduced over the past year, as not for profit organizations have been forced to cut costs, could also lead to increased staff turnover and shortages of experienced and qualified employees in the future.

One of the findings of The TPP Fundraising Recruitment Survey 2010 is that many organizations have decreased entry level positions and turned to interns to fill staff gaps.

Anecdotal evidence suggests that the number of Fundraising Assistant and Co-ordinator roles has decreased as tasks traditionally done by these staff are now being given to unpaid interns or volunteers. This means that Fundraising Officer or Executive jobs are increasingly becoming the entry point into the profession, and this will have a knock-on effect on salaries for these roles.

This increased use of interns is highly likely to have a knock-on effect on fundraising recruitment in the future, as the virtual elimination of the traditional entry point into the profession could well lead to shortages of qualified staff from within the sector. Salaries will be pushed up as charities compete with one another for experienced staff or try to attract employees from the private sector.

Not for profit organisations with an eye on their long term recruitment budgets should consider investing in training and development for their unpaid staff and encouraging them to progress within the fundraising profession, saving on future recruitment costs.

The complete Fundraising Survey is available for download.