COVID-19 Frequently Asked Questions
Blog

Nonprofits losing talent to other sectors

By February 12, 2020June 2nd, 2020No Comments

According to several new surveys conducted in the nonprofit sector, charitable organizations may be losing a large portion of their top talent to other industries.

According to the 2020 HR Practices Survey conducted by 501(c) Services, 62% of the organizations surveyed indicate that they are having difficulty keeping their organizations staffed. Additionally, 22% indicated that employee engagement, motivation and retention is a major HR issue that needs to be addressed. (Retention was the highest HR priority for nonprofits according to the survey.) As a matter of fact, 82% of respondents to the 501(c) Services survey said they have a formal engagement process to help retain current employees.

“Nonprofits know there is a problem,” said Sonya Llewellyn, Director of Program Development for 501(c) Services. “For more than a decade we have seen the nonprofits we work with invest more and more time and budget towards engagement and retention. They are doing some things right like providing competitive benefits, addressing pay, and offering professional development courses. In order to remain competitive, we all have to do more.”

Additionally, a survey conducted by Nonprofit HR found that 45% of responding nonprofit employees indicated that they will seek new or different employment in the next five years. Of that group,  23% said that nonprofits would not be among the types of organizations they intend to pursue. Of those who indicated they would not work for a nonprofit, the top reason (49%) cited is that organizations do not pay enough. Another 19% indicated that nonprofits do not offer good long-term career opportunities and a final 12% said nonprofits are not well-run businesses.

“These statistics are alarming and should serve as a warning to social impact organizations of all types who have not adapted a talent attraction strategy to remain competitive. Gone are the days of talented professionals being willing to take a vow of poverty to work for a cause or a mission they are passionate about. The social sector, rich with diverse and rewarding career opportunities, has long faced the misperception of being low-paying with limited opportunities for professional growth.These results confirm how pervasive this misperception is across the nation and re-ignites urgency in refuting this myth.”said Lisa Brown Alexander, CEO, Nonprofit HR. 

As the third-largest employment sector in the country, nonprofits remain a viable option for today’s jobseekers when their employer value propositions align with jobseekers’ preferences. The results of numerous surveys highlight specific opportunities for nonprofits to raise attractiveness and brand awareness to current employees and future jobseekers.


501(c) Services’ survey was administered to the company’s nearly 3,200 nonprofit customers across the entire United States.

Nonprofit HR partnered with a leading market research firm to administer their survey to over 1,000 respondents. The survey sample spanned the four regions of the United States, covering a broad respondent demographic.

COVID-19 FAQs

The coronavirus (COVID-19) continues to impact the missions and communities served by nonprofits. Read some of the most frequently asked questions 501(c) Services has responded to concerning this pandemic.

Read More

close-link
X