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Attracting Top Candidates within the NFP Sector in 2024

Jan 24, 2024 By Chloe Barton

As we dive head first into 2024, the landscape of recruitment within the not-for-profit (NFP) sector is undergoing a significant transformation. Gone are the days when salary was the sole driving factor for job seekers. Today, candidates are increasingly looking for roles that offer more than just financial rewards; they seek positions that resonate with their personal values and aspirations. In this space, understanding what potential employees desire in an NFP organisation is more crucial than ever. It’s about aligning the ethos of your organisation with the evolving expectations of today’s workforce to create a great candidate experience.

Understanding Candidate Expectations

In 2024, candidates eyeing the NFP sector are not just looking for a job; they are searching for a purpose. The key factors they consider include the organisation’s values, its mission, and the work culture. It’s really important  for NFPs to communicate effectively how their work makes a difference, how they contribute to society, and the impact they aim to achieve.

The work culture of an organisation plays a huge role in attracting talent. A supportive, inclusive, and empowering environment is highly valued. Candidates are looking for workplaces where they can grow in their careers, where their ideas are valued, and where they can collaborate with like-minded individuals towards a common goal. Flexibility, work-life balance, fair remuneration, and opportunities for professional development are also high on the list of priorities.

As we move through 2024, it’s clear that the NFP sector must not only showcase its unique attributes but also understand and adapt to these changing candidate expectations. It’s about creating a narrative that resonates with potential employees, showing them that their work can have a real impact and that their career aspirations can be fulfilled within the organisation.

Competing for Candidates in a Tight Market

In 2024, the expected scenario of a low unemployment rate presents a unique challenge for NFP organisations. With unemployment hovering around 4.25% by the end of 2024, the pool of available talent becomes increasingly competitive. This environment calls for a strategic approach to attract and retain the best candidates, and Employee Value Proposition (EVP) plays a crucial role in this.

Firstly, it’s about showcasing the unique aspects of working in the NFP sector. Highlighting the meaningful work, the chance to contribute to societal change, and the sense of community within the organisation can be major draws. Additionally, NFPs should consider offering competitive packages that include not just salary, but also comprehensive benefits, work-life balance, and opportunities for personal and professional development.

Building a strong employer brand is also crucial. This involves creating a positive image of the organisation as a great place to work, both online and offline. Engaging storytelling, showcasing success stories, and highlighting the impact of the work can strengthen an organisation’s appeal.

Lastly, embracing flexibility and innovation in the recruitment process can set an NFP apart. This might include flexible working arrangements, a streamlined hiring process, or using technology to enhance the candidate experience. It’s about adapting to the modern job market and meeting candidates where they are.

Efficiency in the Recruitment Process

In 2024, efficiency in recruitment is more than a convenience; it’s a necessity, a streamlined and swift recruitment process is key to securing top talent. In a market where skilled candidates are in high demand, delays or long-winded hiring procedures can lead to the loss of great people to other offers.

Being prepared is paramount. This means having a clear understanding of the role requirements, the desired candidate profile, and the organisation’s value proposition. Equally important is the capacity to move quickly through the recruitment cycle – from posting the job to making the offer. 

Embracing modern recruitment technology, such as applicant tracking systems (ATS), allows you to efficiently manage candidate data, automate resume screening, and even handle interview scheduling. This technological edge ensures that you’re not bogged down by administrative tasks, allowing your team to focus on what matters most: finding the right people. 

Effective communication is key to building a high-performing recruitment team. Clear and transparent communication channels ensure that all team members are well-informed and aligned.

Data is your ally in recruitment. By analysing metrics such as time-to-hire, source of hire, and candidate conversion rates, you gain valuable insights into the effectiveness of your recruitment efforts. So, take a moment to evaluate your recruitment process, and aim for efficiency to attain greatness in your hiring process.

Forecasting and Networking for Future Recruitment Needs

For NFPs, forward-thinking is crucial in staffing. This involves forecasting recruitment needs by considering both organisational growth and average turnover rates. Understanding these metrics helps in creating a strategic recruitment plan that addresses future talent requirements.

Continuous networking and engagement with potential talent pools are vital, especially in a candidate-short market. Building relationships with potential candidates through industry events, social media, professional networks, and partnerships with educational institutions can create a pipeline of talent ready to be tapped into when needed. This proactive approach not only fills immediate vacancies but also prepares the organisation for future recruitment needs.

Impact’s Practical Tips and Strategies

To enhance your NFP organisation’s appeal to potential employees, you can adopt several practical strategies:

  1. Showcase Impact: Communicate the tangible impact of the work your organisation does. Share stories of success and how employees have contributed to these achievements.
  2. Develop a Strong Employer Brand: Create a compelling employer brand that highlights your organisation’s culture, values, and the benefits of working there.
  3. Offer Competitive Benefits: Beyond salary, offer benefits that matter to employees, such as flexible working arrangements, wellness programs, and professional development opportunities.
  4. Foster an Inclusive Culture: Emphasise your commitment to diversity and inclusion. A workplace where everyone feels valued and included is highly attractive.
  5. Utilise Employee Testimonials: Share testimonials from current employees about their experiences and growth within the organisation.

By adopting these strategies, you could significantly enhance your appeal to potential candidates, ensuring you attract and retain the talent needed to drive your mission forward in 2024 and beyond.

It’s Time for a Refresh

As we navigate 2024, it’s clear that the NFP sector must adapt its recruitment strategies to meet the evolving market conditions. Let’s rethink and refine your approach to talent acquisition.

Embrace the changes, capitalise on your unique offerings, and ensure that your recruitment strategies align with the aspirations and needs of today’s workforce. By doing so, you position your organisation not just to succeed but to thrive in attracting and retaining the people that will drive your mission forward.

At Impact Advising, we’re committed to innovating and adapting our recruitment strategies to help you secure the best talent! Our aim is not just to fill roles but to work alongside you as you navigate market conditions.

If you’re inspired to refresh your attraction strategies, reach out to Impact Advising, and let’s make an impact together.