Home > The Power of Purpose: New Workforce Survey Provides Candid Insight for Nonprofits to Attract and Retain Top Talent

The Power of Purpose: New Workforce Survey Provides Candid Insight for Nonprofits to Attract and Retain Top Talent

(ATLANTA) April 16, 2018 – Anyone working in the nonprofit world knows the magnetic draw of doing good for others and their communities. But how strong is that attraction once you are in the day-to-day grind of meaningful, yet hard work?

According to new research from Work for Good, that draw is both powerful and lasting: These purpose-driven professionals report high workplace engagement – nearly three times the national average – plus healthy satisfaction rates. And they are committed: Nearly 9 in 10 plan to stay in nonprofits for the rest of their careers.

The full results of that research are now available: The nonprofit workforce speaks: Candid insight to attract, engage, and retain top mission-driven talent is a new ebook published by Work for Good, a leading national nonprofit job board and employer resource. Work for Good’s original research examines how the nonprofit workforce accesses and assesses career opportunities, pursues professional development, and thinks about the employers, and sector, they work for.

“This report is good news for nonprofit organizations, demonstrating the commitment of our workforce and the growing demand for purpose-driven careers,” said Karen Beavor, CEO of Work for Good. “Nonprofits can capitalize by casting a wider net for talent, and focusing on what makes our workplaces great.”

The nonprofit workforce speaks is being offered to nonprofit organizations nationwide to help them best understand how their workforce thinks and acts when it comes to job satisfaction, engagement, and seeking work. In addition to first-hand testimony, this ebook offers ready-to-execute steps for attracting, engaging, and retaining talented employees in a highly competitive job market.

A few survey highlights:

  • 93% feel engaged in nonprofit work (compared to 33% national average)
  • 77% are somewhat or highly satisfied in their current role
  • 88% plan to work in nonprofits long term
  • 52% are financially uncomfortable
  • "Culture and values” is the most-cited priority when considering a new employer

Survey results also showed that, despite high levels of satisfaction, engagement, and commitment to the nonprofit sector, it still takes effort to retain employees for longer than the average three-year stint. “There are clear opportunities to improve our methods for attracting and retaining top talent, and most require relatively simple, low-cost changes,” said Beavor.

Strategies to increase retention:

  • Creating individualized career growth plans
  • Providing on-the-job “stretch” opportunities
  • Communicating clear expectations, constructive feedback, and genuine appreciation
  • Offering flex time or telecommuting opportunities

“Our mission at Work for Good is to provide a direct line between nonprofit employers and mission-minded job seekers,” said Beavor. “As the workforce evolves, we need to understand how their habits, conceptions and misconceptions, and satisfaction relates to their employers. This ebook will help employers better understand what their workforce needs to thrive.”


About Work for Good
A program of the Georgia Center for Nonprofits, Work for Good connects the cause community nationwide – bringing together mission-driven organizations and job seekers through our state-of-the-art, easy-to-use job board platform and our unparalleled customer service and support. Designed to strengthen and streamline the hiring process, workforgood.org includes a full suite of job posting tools, plus exclusive content from hiring experts and nonprofit HR practitioners.

Media Contact:
Betsy Reid
[email protected]