Hiring Trends in Nonprofit Organizations

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In 2023, organizations must implement robust talent acquisition and retention policies to remain strong amid a looming recession. While every organization faces unique challenges in its recruitment process, the hiring bottlenecks inherent in the nonprofit sector are unique.

Effective hiring in nonprofits and NGOs is often restricted by tight budgets, meaning those working in these organizations do so with below-average salaries. As a result, many stay for “the love of the game,” and some even work as “volunteers,” not employees.

That said, if you’re a hiring manager or a nonprofit leader, you’ll need to stay abreast of the current talent acquisition and retention trends to remain relevant and competitive in this changing sector.
Here are the nonprofit hiring trends to watch out for in 2023.

1. Make Remote Work More Convenient

Following the COVID-19 pandemic, there has been a radical shift in working arrangements across industries, with many organizations adopting a hybrid work model.

A hybrid model mixes in-office and remote work to provide job flexibility. Many nonprofits are adopting this model, with some offering fully remote arrangements as one of the job perks.
Many nonprofits and NGOs encourage remote work by removing barriers and offering employees flexibility to work when, how, and where they’re most productive. This flexibility includes providing the technology and building the infrastructure that supports remote work.

For organizations that still need work to be completed in the office, offering hybrid work arrangements can still attract job candidates. Nonprofits can also go international and hire top talent globally by allowing remote work.

2. Put Employee Well-being First

While it’s essential to attract top talent, to retain them, your primary focus should be on creating an environment where they can feel cared for and valued. And that entails focusing more on their well-being.

Surprisingly, a staggering 38% of nonprofits face challenges ensuring their employees’ mental health and well-being.
Employee well-being is closely linked to health and productivity. Research shows that employees in good mental, physical, and emotional health are more productive than those without these health factors.

If you want to create a culture that attracts top talents in your nonprofit organization, focus on your employee well-being. Some ways you can depict a culture that promotes employee well-being in your hiring include providing the following:

  • Mental health and psychosocial support programs
  • Stress relief and coping education
  • Mental health resources
  • Financial education
  • Smoking cessation programs
  • Weight management programs

3. Focus on Diversity, Equality, and Inclusion (DEI)

As the country continues to grapple with racism and inclusion issues, more and more nonprofits are stepping up to strengthen DEI approaches in their recruitment policies.

The focus on DEI gained momentum in 2020 and will continue in 2023 as donors, employees, and clients demand diversity, equality, and inclusion in the workforce of their partners. In 2023, diverse talent will be in high demand at all levels, including senior management roles.

Some nonprofits and NGOs even create Chief Diversity Officer roles where the incumbent ensures commitment to DEI practices throughout the organization.

4. Consider Financial Leadership

Leveraging financial leadership is critical to combating the ongoing hiring crisis. Leaders with in-depth financial knowledge can provide advice on hiring practices, such as how to pay the recruits, what areas to increase hires, and when to hire additional staff.
Unfortunately, many nonprofit organizations need stronger financial leaders who can leverage data to balance salary compensation figures with current employee wages.

Often, this CFO-type role falls under the executive director’s responsibilities, who may not have the financial acumen to make the best hiring decisions in line with the company’s needs and resources. This leadership model can result in non-competitive offers, which may put job candidates off and increase employee churn.

To that end, lacking strong financial leadership can thwart an organization’s effort to attract and retain top talent. As a result, some nonprofit organizations are bringing in part-time financial leaders to aid in the hiring and decision-making processes.

5. Measure and Improve Talent Experience

Improving employee experience is as essential as hiring top talent. Recruiters are using different tactics to improve candidate experience in 2023.

For example, some nonprofit organizations use candidate sourcing programs to make the organization a hub for talented people. They’re also looking to improve the recruitment process by shortening the recruitment time. The better the experience organizations can create for their potential candidates, the more talented candidates they can acquire.

Besides the improved onboarding process of a leader, many organizations are launching robust learning programs to foster employee professional growth and enhance retention.

6. Implement Salary Transparency

Salary transparency has become a trend across companies globally, and well-led nonprofit organizations have followed suit. As a result, these organizations are reversing the typical guessing game that candidates play when applying for and interviewing for jobs.
Salary information is vital for job candidates.

It’s one of the first things applicants look for in a job advert, and some candidates will not apply for positions that don’t include this information. If the salary is competitive, you can expect to attract top talent and get a ton of job applications within just a few days of posting. Intelligent nonprofit leaders know this and always include salary data in their job ads.

In a Nutshell

We anticipate that 2023 will bring many hiring changes to nonprofit organizations. But the most influential organizations will gravitate towards remote work, improve their employees’ well-being, focus more on DEI, consider financial leadership, and implement salary transparency.

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