Want to know who’s hiring? Follow the money.
Forbes recently ran an article, cheekily titled Get Paid to Be a Do-Gooder, highlighting nonprofit career options. While it isn’t exactly news that people can earn a living in the nonprofit sector (in fact, over 15 million Americans do every day), it’s interesting to observe these career choices gaining the street cred they deserve.
The article also pointed out the increase in competition for nonprofit jobs, even the traditionally entry-level and low-paid ones. For example, Peace Corps applications are up 12% and AmeriCorps applications have tripled over the last year. Plus, like most work sectors, hiring is down across the board, resulting in a surplus of talent for fewer positions overall.
In this “buyer’s market” for talent, how can job seekers find out about who’s hiring first? Three simple words: FOLLOW THE MONEY. Track news about nonprofits that are receiving funding, increasing their budgets, launching new programs, etc.
Guidestar can be a great source for researching general budget information, but you’ll also want to follow headlines on grantmaking activity on a news aggregator like Google News or Alltop. We’ve found Alltop to be an amazingly comprehensive resource that pulls the latest nonprofit news items about all things nonprofits from a variety of sources, including blogs and press releases.
To find out who is giving what to whom, familiarize yourself with The Foundation Center website. There is a grant look-up tool on the site. Also, visit the websites of major funders (e.g. Ford Foundation, Kellogg Foundation) as well as niche foundations (e.g. Edna McConnell Clark, New Profit) to get the skinny on how these funders are supporting their portfolio organizations. Before you know it, you’ll have the inside scoop on which organizations are expanding. This knowledge may lead you to a career opportunity well in advance of an actual job posting. For other resources to leverage in your research, check out our Resource Directory.
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