Charity sector jobs grow in popularity

Six out of 10 employees working in the commercial sector believe that the not-for-profit sector has shed its “cardigan brigade” label and offers strong career prospects, research shows.

A survey by forum3, organisers of a recruitment and volunteering event for the not-for-profit sector, showed 85% of people looking for a career change would consider working in the “third” sector.

Most people cited being able to progress in a career while helping a greater cause (72%) as the top reason.

In fact, 59% of people say that recent world events such as the London bombings, Asian tsunami and Live8 have caused them to consider working in the charity sector.

Pay remains the biggest barrier to attracting the best people, putting off 70% of commercial sector workers. However if pay levels were equal, the majority (90%) would consider progressing to a career in the charity sector.

Deborah Hockham, project director for forum3 said: “It’s immensely encouraging to see that the not-for-profit sector is finally losing its cardigan brigade label and being viewed as a sector which can offer strong prospects.

However, it is clear the sector has its work cut out in combating a number of misperceptions. As pay gaps have narrowed, and in many areas not-for-profit pay scales have become fully aligned with those in the commercial sector, the sector clearly needs to raise awareness of, and promote this message.”


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