You're a nonprofit and you've got an open position within your organization. You want to bring in the best candidates for the job. The first step to this is obviously to put together a job posting - but are you doing it the right way?
The nonprofit sector is notorious for having poor job postings - ones that are unclear on salary, don't properly outline tasks and responsibilities, and ask for too much experience for a lower position. This results in lost time as you sift through unqualified candidates, when the perfect one could be right under your nose!
There is a better way to write a job posting for the nonprofit sector, and we're going to show you three things to include (and two things to leave out):
What to include
Think you can get around (or get away with) not including the salary range for the job? Think again - it's misleading for candidates, and in some cases, online job boards won't allow the posting if there isn't a salary attached to it. There's also the fact that many candidates see a lack of salary range as a “red flag” indicating that the charity is less professional than other organizations.
Don't beat around the bush when it comes to putting salaries in your job posting. Be upfront and honest about what your NPO is offering for the position.
Knowledge of the difference between part-time and full-time
A good NPO tends to have a mix of both full- and part-time positions, but it can get dicey when it comes time to hire for one or the other. It's typical to start listing out required tasks for a part-time position, then discover that you've essentially outlined a full-time job.
Take the time to break down how many hours are actually in a task. Sure, a position teaching might contain an hour of training young entrepreneurs, but are you taking into considering the hours required to build the course and create materials?
What technology skills are required
Given how much technology is becoming integrated with digital fundraising, it’s vital that you list what tech skills are needed for the job. For example, if the position requires handling donor management, you’ll need someone who’s familiar with a CRM (constituent relationship management).
What's also important is to differentiate between having experience with software versus being skilled in the software. If the software is similar enough to another program that a candidate has experience in, then that should be enough to train them on.
What to leave out
Stringent years of experience
Insisting on somebody who has 10-20 years experience working in a discipline can stop good quality candidates from applying. After all, we all know professionals who have been doing the same thing with mediocre or stale results for 20 years, and on the flip side, we know people new to the sector who have managed amazing programs right out of college. Who do you want to join your team? Be flexible with your experience requirements.
Anything that implies gender or age requirements
This should be a no-brainer for job postings in general, but you might be surprised by how many people make this mistake. It's all in the wording - you wouldn't want to put out a job posting asking, "Young women wanted for desk work."
Aside from latent sexism, it can also be illegal to list specific preferences in a job posting that may discourage someone from applying for a job. In the USA, this includes race, color, religion, sex (including gender identity, sexual orientation, and pregnancy), national origin, age (40 or older), disability or genetic information.
In Canada, the Canadian Human Rights Act (CHRA) prohibits discrimination on the grounds of race, national or ethnic origin, colour, religion, age, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity or expression, marital status, family status, genetic characteristics, disability and conviction for an offence for which a pardon has been granted or in respect of which a record suspension has been ordered.
Let the above tips be your guide next time you're putting together a job posting for your nonprofit! Not only will they keep you on the straight and narrow, but they'll cut down on unqualified applicants and let some of the hidden gems shine through. Don't forget to download our nonprofit job postings ebook for even more tips on how to write the best description!