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New Classy Study Finds Majority of Nonprofit Employees Satisfied in Current Roles, Far Outpacing National Job Satisfaction Metrics
[June 12, 2019]

New Classy Study Finds Majority of Nonprofit Employees Satisfied in Current Roles, Far Outpacing National Job Satisfaction Metrics

BOSTON, June 12, 2019 /PRNewswire/ -- Classy, creator of world-class online fundraising software for nonprofits, today unveiled its first-ever report examining nonprofit professionals' perspectives on their current challenges, observations, and hopes for the future within the modern nonprofit landscape. The report, titled World-Changing Work: The Modern Nonprofit Professional's Experience, reveals that the majority (84%) of nonprofit employees are both satisfied in their current roles at their organizations and aligned with leadership in their vision for the future. Those involved with their organization's fundraising efforts are especially satisfied, with 92% of this cohort expressing contentment. This level of job satisfaction is much higher than the latest poll of American workers as a whole, with just 51% of employees reporting that they were satisfied with their jobs in The Conference Board's latest annual survey, conducted in 2018.

Classy's new report—World-Changing Work: The Modern Nonprofit Professional’s Experience—examines what motivates, inspires, and concerns today’s nonprofit industry professionals.

Beyond job satisfaction, the report delves into a variety of important subjects, including nonprofit employees' propensity to make personal donations to their own organizations, what their individual concerns are compared to their organization's top concerns, how they stay informed and inspired, and how technology impacts their day-to-day roles, especially within fundraising.

Key findings from the report include:

  • The majority of nonprofit professionals are satisfied in their roles and aligned with leadership. While 84% of nonprofit professionals across departments express satisfaction in their jobs, this sentiment is even higher (92%) among those very involved in fundraising efforts at their organization. The majority of survey respondents (84%) also say they're aligned with leadership in their vision for their organization, and similarly, 82% of respondents say their board members are supportive of innovative ideas to improve their organizations.
  • Though satisfied, nonprofit employees recognize room for improvement at their organizations. Professionals at organizations of all sizes indicated that their nonprofit's biggest concerns are overhead costs (59%), donor retention (49%), and employee wages (39%). When asked to rank concerns on a personal level, however, employee wages ranked highest. Concern about donor retention was higher among employees involved with fundraising efforts compared to those who aren't.
  • More than half of nonprofit employees give personal donations to their organization. On top of their dailydedication to their organization as an employee, more than half of nonprofit professionals also donate routinely (weekly, monthly, or yearly) to their organizations where they work, and those involved in the organization's fundraising efforts or in an executive role are even more likely to make personal contributions to their organization. However, nearly 1 in 4 nonprofit employees never donate to their organization.
  • Nonprofit employees are split in their assessment of how well their organization keeps up with modern technology. Though 4 in 10 nonprofit professionals don't feel their organization is leveraging technology to their advantage compared to other nonprofits, an equal number of professionals do believe their organization is leveraging technology to their advantage. Employees at small nonprofits are the least confident in their organization's technology.
  • Online fundraising plays a major role in nonprofits' fundraising strategies—and they want easy-to-use software. Over half of nonprofit professionals reported raising money through online donations in 2018. When evaluating online fundraising platforms, the most important attribute nonprofits look for is ease of use. When asked which department within their organization is responsible for discovering or testing new technology, 37% said executive leadership is in charge, 34% said IT, and 29% said marketing.
  • Today's nonprofit professionals value the power of social media to tell their organizations' stories and get their news. Respondents rank social media above word of mouth and email marketing when evaluating their top marketing channels. Similarly, social media is a top source employees turn to for industry news, second to their colleagues.

"We know that it's not always easy for nonprofit professionals to glean the types of insights found in this report," said Scot Chisholm, Classy CEO and Co-Founder, speaking live from the stage at the 2019 Collaborative in Boston, MA. "But at Classy, we fundamentally believe that nonprofits can be even more effective at advancing their missions when they get to share their learnings, challenges, and wins with each other, which is why we created a report that can spark meaningful dialogue around the state of our working environments in the sector."

The report was unveiled to an audience of more than 1,200 nonprofit leaders, social entrepreneurs, and sector innovators at the 2019 Collaborative, Classy's annual social impact event. The 2019 Collaborative was presented by Classy, in collaboration with Amazon Web Services and Southwest Airlines, with other sponsors including Giving Assistant, Okta, and Virtuous Software.

To download the full report, head to the Classy blog or click here.

About the Survey
Classy surveyed 1,002 individuals 18 and older who are managers and above at a nonprofit organization in the U.S., 82% of whom reported working for a 501c3 nonprofit. The survey was fielded in March 2019 using the Qualtrics Insight Platform, and panel was sourced from Fulcrum by Lucid.

About Classy
Classy is a social enterprise that creates world-class online fundraising software for nonprofits, modernizing the giving experience to accelerate social impact around the world. Based in San Diego, CA, Classy is trusted by organizations of all sizes, from the fastest-growing nonprofits like Team Rubicon and The Trevor Project, to some of the world's largest social organizations, such as The Salvation Army, Robin Hood Foundation, and Shriners Hospitals for Children. Classy also hosts the Collaborative conference and the Classy Awards to spotlight the innovative work nonprofits are implementing around the globe. For more information, visit or follow Classy on Twitter @Classy.

Monica Finch 

World-Changing Work was unveiled at Classy's annual social impact event, the Collaborative, to over 1,200 social sector leaders.

Classy Logo (PRNewsfoto/Classy)

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