Despite tightening budgets, nonprofits are struggling to find the best executive talent.
According to a new survey by the Bridgespan Group:
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- As of January, 28% of nonprofit organizations planned to make senior management hires, translating to 24,000 vacancies in 2009.
- Top barriers to finding suitable leaders included compensation and difficulty finding executives with specialized skills, as well as competition for the same in-sector talent pool and lack of resources to find or cultivate new leaders.
- Projected vacancies are largely the result of retirement, since much of the existing leadership is comprised of boomers.
- Surprisingly, for a sector that is notorious for relying on personal relationships, job boards surpassed external networking for first place as a way to reach candidates, with 49% of organizations using job boards versus 44% using external networking to identify their candidates. And 38% used general print advertising, but it was found to be among the least effective tools. Only 13% of the organizations surveyed employed search firms, but found them highly effective.
- 53% of U.S. nonprofits with revenue over $1 million have significant for-profit management experience represented on their senior management teams, including 20% in financial roles. Additionally, 42% of the executive directors surveyed had significant management experience in the private sector.