Survey: Nonprofits Not Doing Enough for Young Fundraisers
February 20, 2021 — Nonprofits are doing little to support and retain their young professional fundraisers, and many of those young professionals anticipate leaving their current position in search of more experience elsewhere, according to a recently completed survey.
To gain experience, more young professionals (YPs)—age 35 or younger—expect to leave their current organization (38%) than expect to be able to move within their current employer (31%), according to the Association of Fundraising Professionals (AFP) 2020 Compensation and Benefits Report, released earlier this month.
Two-thirds of young professionals (66%) want to move organizations in order to improve their leadership skills for fundraising, and 58% want to gain skills in managing a team, the survey found.
Just 40% of young fundraising professionals reported that their workplace offers any of four programs or approaches that have been shown in other industries to assist career advancement, improve employee engagement, and promote teamwork. Those programs are:
Findings were based on a survey with 4,659 responses, of which 1,059 were age 35 or younger.
Just 30% of YPs surveyed said they have mentors in their current workplace. In contrast, eight in 10 respondents (81%) said they have someone they would consider a professional role model, almost half of whom they met at a previous organization.
As part of the survey, YPs were asked what part of their job they were least prepared to do. More than 63% identified at least one aspect of their work:
“Young professionals are the future of our profession, and their expertise, energy, and outlook can make a huge difference to the success of our organizations,” said Mike Geiger, president and CEO of AFP. “Yet, we are failing them, and in turn, hurting our organizations’ long-term success.”