How To Post Nonprofit Jobs

Your nonprofit needs talented, passionate employees to support your mission and to further your cause.  But where do you find the right candidates?  Advertising your nonprofit openings in the right locations will increase the quality and quantity of responses.  In addition to the standard methods, there are also useful websites that target employers and jobseekers in the nonprofit sector.

  1. Spend the time and determine how broad your search will be.  You may not have a human resources department in a smaller nonprofit and could be potentially inundated with applications.  Take the time to consider how much time and resources you have to handle the amount of applications that you expect and the basis on which you will evaluate who is the best applicant.  For example, if you have a very specific position and limited resources to manage applicants, you may limit where you post your advertisement and select the outlets most likely to bring your organization the best applicant pool.  Posting too broadly can cost you time and energy without generating the responses you need for your organization.
  2. Post on your nonprofit's website.  It may seem obvious, but some nonprofits do not have a section on their website to post openings.  If you are particularly eager to find qualified candidates, make sure that your job announcement is placed strategically on the main page or in your "about us" section of your website.
  3. Post your job opening in your nonprofit's newsletter.  Again, amongst your supporters you might find a highly qualified candidate.  Also, consider your volunteers who are already familiar with the organization and might also be looking to turn a volunteer pastime into a career.
  4. Use your board of directors.  Put your board to work by asking them to spread the word and to suggest qualified candidates.  An active and engaged board of directors can be helpful in finding the right person or sharing the burden of sorting through applications.
  5. Go local.  Post your job advertisement in local papers and community bulletins to seek qualified local candidates.  Think of other community groups that share similar or related interests and let them help you spread the word.  If having a local applicant is important to you, then take the time to spread the word, especially when there are plenty of free resources available in most communities.
  6. Go back to school.  If you are hiring entry-level employees, posting your nonprofit's employment opportunity with selected universities can locate quality candidates who are eager for experience and willing to work at modest nonprofit salary rates.  Graduate schools are another great place to post nonprofit job openings.  The benefit of hiring graduate students, either while they are in school or just as they are graduating, is that they also need experience and are eager to put their idealism to work.
  7. Get specific.  Use the associations or networks with which your nonprofit works or of which it is a part.  Many nonprofits belong to coalitions or networks that include email lists or websites that permit job posting.  Specifically targeting people already working in your field can narrow your search, but it can also reduce the amount of work your organization devotes to sorting through applications.  Likewise, at conferences in your field, be sure to bring along job postings so that you may have a chance to locate skilled employees and have a chance to talk with them informally to pre-screen if a potential applicant would be a good fit in your organization.
  8. Go national.  Use large national job websites, like, and other resources to broaden your search.  Sometimes nonprofits overlook skilled candidates who have useful skills in accounting, management, finances, or other aspects of business that can contribute greatly to the success of your nonprofit.  It is easier to teach a well-qualified office manager about your organization's mission than it is to teach someone how to run an office even if they are enthusiastic and support your cause.  Additionally, a seasoned professional is less likely than an inexperienced person to burn out or grow bored with some of the less glamorous aspects of running a nonprofit smoothly.
  9. Use the major nonprofit job websites.  Several quality (and often free) options for posting open positions with nonprofits are available for your organization.  See some of the many options available for posting your next opening:

    • Idealist.Org is a site with job listings all over the world, but focused on US nonprofit positions.  Nonprofits can post their listings within specific criteria, which allows jobseekers to find you.  You can also post volunteer opportunities.  Idealist also sponsors job fairs in major cities, which is another venue for finding new employees if your organization participates.
    • Craig's List permits verified nonprofits to post job listings for free.  Not only does Craig's List support nonprofits with free ads, but the Craig's List Foundation also sponsors a nonprofit boot camp in the San Francisco Bay Area and in New York City.  At the book camp, nonprofits can learn how to better run their organizations, as well as link with potential new employees.
    • lets nonprofits -- as well as eco-friendly and socially-responsible companies -- post openings.
    • Community Career Center lets nonprofits post openings and permits you to review résumés of jobseekers.
    • OpportunityKnocks.Org offers another job search website and a place to post your nonprofit or to review résumés.
    • Center for Philanthropy is a great resource for executive-level and development employment in the nonprofit sector.  If you are seeking experienced nonprofit managers, this website is an excellent resource.


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