Op Ed | Retention in the charity sector

publication date: Nov 21, 2019
author/source: Ann Rosenfield

There has been a lot of talk in the charity sector about problems with employee retention. A recent study by the Association of Fundraising Executives found that half of fundraisers are likely to leave their job within the next two years. In a relationship-based sector, high turnover is not good for charities or employees. 

Far too often when we discuss charity sector turnover, we don't talk about the other statistics. Other research, also from AFP, found that 25% of women fundraisers have been sexually harassed in their work. Still other research by AFP finds that Canadian women fundraisers are, on average paid 24% less than their male counterparts.

These concerning studies are just the tip of the iceberg. Great research out of the Ontario Nonprofit Network finds that limited access to a pension plan, health benefits, and maternity and parental benefits top-ups together lower women’s overall total compensation over the course of their life cycle.  

Worse yet, harassment, unfair wage gap, and the benefits gap is even more severe for racialized women. 

About 70% of AFP members are women and ONN reports 80% of charity employees are women

The question we might want to ask is not, "why are so many people leaving their jobs" but instead, "why are so many people staying in their jobs."

Ann Rosenfield is the Editor of Hilborn Charity eNews and not really happy at how little all this has changed over the course of her career.



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