Category Archive for "non profit"

Good Bosses Know Better: Don’t Let Your Employees Forfeit Vacation Time

Shared Content; Published at Forbes.com; Author Bethany Lampland There is no controversy over the fact that employees who are enthusiastic about their jobs and dedicated to their work yield better results for their companies. It’s also pretty clear that using vacation time and periodically disconnecting from work leads to more productivity and a greater likelihood of career success. Yet, according to a study by Project: Time Off, 55% of Americans leave vacation days unused each year. All of this begs the question: as managers, how can we empower employees to make full use of their vacation time and reap the benefits of more productive and satisfied teammates? First, perhaps the most impactful thing we can do to incentivize employees not to squander paid time off is to create a culture that promotes the use of vacation as the expected and responsible thing to do. I once had a boss who constantly chided people for taking vacation. He would publicly say things like, ‘Mary just got back from her third vacation of the year. It’s nice to see she has time to drop in on this meeting.’ Now, in fairness, he intended these comments in jest. But, whether lighthearted or not,…

Insights for Hiring Managers: Interviewing CPA Candidates for a Staff or Senior Position

Be honest about expectations. Finding the right financial leadership for a nonprofit must start at the top. Of course you want someone with financial expertise, but what are the hidden expectations of the job? Is it to bring a strategic, high-level perspective to the organization for growth, or to reduce the financial workload for the Executive Director? Does the role involve managing day-to- day accounting and the annual 990 report, or providing fiscal leadership to the CEO and Board of Directors? Compare your expectations and the candidate’s traits. If what you really want is a financial leader to guide the organization through major growth, or perhaps a pro to creatively managing working capital, a candidate that has strong financial credentials but is weak in leadership traits is not the hire for you. Expecting someone to “rise to the position” is a huge gamble that most nonprofits cannot withstand. Ask candid questions. Ask candid questions to understand how the candidate approaches challenges and solves problems—not only those of a financial nature, but the inevitable challenges that pop-up when managing teams and working with executive leadership. If you have identified “analytical thinking skills, problem solver, confident leadership or effective team player” as…

Insights for CPA Candidates: Prepping Your Accounting Resume to Land a Nonprofit Job

Your resume is really the story of your career. Nonprofit hiring managers want to see more than just your pedigree and previous jobs. Focus on your areas of expertise and specific accomplishments. Demonstrate how you have tackled challenges and opportunities to build fiscal health for other companies. Don’t be afraid to address the good and the bad—the hard decisions—that those in finance sometimes have to make. You want the employer to immediately grasp the scope of your experience—and to see the traits of leadership in all that you have done. Sell, but don’t oversell. Be honest about your training, education, certifications and licenses. Remember, these are all verifiable facts. This also applies to the scope of your role with your previous employer. Hyperbole, for an accountant, will get you nowhere. Details speak volumes. The attention to detail in spelling and grammar is critical—and it is especially true for you. After all, you are to be entrusted with the role of reporting numbers accurately. If you can’t get your own details correct, why should someone else trust you with theirs? Optimize your resume. Your resume will most likely be filtered through software, so make sure you use strong keywords: financial and…

4 Tips for Hiring a Great Financial Team for Your Nonprofit

Hiring a staff accountant, finance director, or even a bookkeeper can give the best Executive Director a severe case of hives. Accounting is not a skill set in which most Directors excel. So how do you know if you are hiring the right person? Here are four tips to help avoid costly errors. 1. Financial expertise is not the only talent you need A good financial person should have keen insight and strong analytical capabilities. You want this person to see liabilities and pitfalls before they occur. But don’t stop there. Can they communicate financials to non-financial folks? Can you envision them presenting not only to you but to the staff or to your board? Look for leadership and communication skills just like you would with any other candidate. 2. You do need experience with nonprofit financials There are over 22 leading database/financial software programs serving nonprofits with about 5 industry leaders. The candidate either knows your software or not. If not, lean in on questions about their “learning curve” habits. It’s not just the software that matters. You already know that nonprofits have unique rules regarding the recording, handling and application of funds. Ask your candidate a lot of…

Four Staffing Pain Points for Nonprofits

The greatest expense for any nonprofit generally tends to be the cost of its staff. Staff salaries combined with benefits can easily reach 50% to 80% of an organization’s budget. Although the cost of its workforce is the cost of doing business for any organization fulfilling its mission, keeping those costs under control is the key to an organization’s success. The following are ways that nonprofit managers can avoid added costs and improve management of their workforce as well as their ability to serve their constituents. 1. Hiring the Right Staff Organizations that have clear and consistent hiring processes will have more productive interviews and a better chance at hiring the right employees Since 30% of resumes contain misleading or inaccurate information, it is important that managers do not hire based on resume information only, with little else Offering salaries in the right range for the position is critical to attracting top talent Organizations that know how to brand and sell their organizations will compete more effectively in the marketplace 2. Cost of Poor Performance Nonprofits that demand high employee performance throughout their organization, build value and quality throughout their organization Organizations that reward top performance hold on to their…

How to Find a New Job (Before You Leave Your Current One)

It’s no secret that having a job while looking for a new one is widely regarded as a plus. Employers want good hires, and one of the best ways to do that is to hire an individual considered a good hire by someone else. Almost 73% of employees search for new jobs while they currently have a job. But there are risks in job hunting while employed. Most employers work hard to retain talented staff, and losing someone without knowledge or notice can really hurt a nonprofit organization. It can also hurt your career. If you have decided it’s time to move on, take these tips to heart: Time the news. In most cases, it is not a good idea to immediately share the news that you are looking for a new job with your boss. It’s generally more productive to give your boss as much notice as possible once you get another job, and then to leave in an organized and professional manner. If you feel comfortable, allow your boss (or the person who replaces you) to contact you if there are questions.Leaving a job this way speaks volumes about your integrity and professionalism, and creates an opportunity for…

How to Be the Candidate that Lands the Job

Know Thyself. The best candidates know what they want—from and for—themselves. Nonprofit employers can sense when you are looking for a job versus looking to make a difference. Share your story and demonstrate how you can deliver impact. Ask candid questions. Rather, ask direct questions—what are the goals, obstacles and results required—so you understand the real job at hand. Focus on the success factors that a company needs, and demonstrate how your initiative and experience fits into the larger picture. Conduct your own performance review. Ask the interviewer if they have any concerns about your qualifications. This allows any lingering concerns to be immediately addressed and, gives you an opportunity to demonstrate how you handle challenging conversations.

3 Tips for Hiring the Right Person

1. Assess impact and potential. Don’t let first impressions blind you. Spend enough time with each candidate to really assess their curiosity, experience, and determination to succeed. 2. Don’t be afraid to define the results you want. Candid conversations drive successful results. Don’t be afraid to define the quantifiable results that you need during the interview process. You’ll be able to quickly determine who’s up to the task and who’s not. 3. Be consistent with your questions—and stay on track. Prepare your questions in advance and stick to them—with every interview. It’s easy to get off-track and run out of time if the conversation turns to topics other than the ones intended. You can follow the natural path of a conversation, but don’t let diversions keep you from learning what you need to know.

8 Reasons Why Professional Recruiters are Worth the Cost

The cost of hiring and firing any employee is astronomical when counting the expense of time spent, and the psychology of a failed choice. Between the cost of onboarding, training, coaching, staff time, wasted salary, and administrative costs, HR professionals project that an organization can easily spend thousands of dollars on a hire that has gone wrong. Most so called bad hires should not have happened in the first place. Given that the cost of a hire that’s gone wrong—generally estimated to be anywhere between $4,000-$12,000—it’s hard to understand why you wouldn’t use a professional recruitment agency. Eight Reasons Why You Should Hire a Professional Recruitment Agency 1. Increased Probability of Success Managers do not hire staff often enough to become experts in the field. Whereas, a good recruiter brings to the table a high level of expertise in recruiting and employment law, an extensive candidate network, and experience in the marketplace – skills that most do not have. There is no greater stress to staff or an organization than hiring poorly. Professional recruiters increase your probability of success. 2. Save Time, and Time is Money The more time it takes to find the right person to hire, the more…

Gender Pay Gap

The American Association of University Women (AAUW), headquartered in Washington, DC, is the nation’s leading voice promoting equity and education for women and girls. The organization fights to end wage discrimination and open doors for women in the workplace. Job creation and economic opportunity are critical issues for women, many of whom continue to struggle with economic insecurity and wage discrimination. Despite civil rights laws and advancements in women’s economic status, workplace discrimination still persists. Typically, women who work full-time take home about 80 cents for every dollar a full-time male worker earns. Over a lifetime (47 working years), the total estimated loss of earnings of women compared with men are $700,000 for a high school graduate, $1.2 million for a college graduate, and $2 million for a professional school graduate. AAUW’s report Graduating to a Pay Gap: The Earnings of Women and Men One Year after College Graduation found an unexplainable 7% difference in the earnings of male and female college graduates one year after graduation, even after accounting for many factors, including college major, occupation, industry, sector, hours worked, workplace flexibility, experience, educational attainment, enrollment status, GPA, college selectivity, age, race/ethnicity, region, marital status, and motherhood. Clearly, the…