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Highlights from Blackbaud’s Future of Work Report

Are you ready for working practices to change? Our colleagues at Blackbaud have teamed up with The Resource Alliance to release the Future of Work 2021 – a new report sharing fresh insights on what’s next for the charity sector.

The report is based on survey responses from over 800 charity professionals and eight in-depth interviews with leaders from organisations such as Poetry in Wood, HIGGS and Stroke Association UK. Divided into five sections, the report deep dives into personal wellbeing, how employees feel about their charity’s response to COVID-19, the future plans that some leaders have already put in place, and even the ways that the past year has impacted future career plans.

Future of Work is now available to download from Blackbaud’s resources hub and we’ve shared some interesting highlights below that indicate how fundraising professionals are feeling professionally and personally a year on from the start of lockdown.

Perception of Organisations’ Response to COVID-19

It goes without saying that the past year has been challenging, and the survey found that 25% of respondents had experienced being furloughed at some point during the pandemic. Despite all the ups and downs, fundraising professionals still feel overwhelmingly positive towards their charity and their response to COVID-19.

  • 90% of respondents agreed that their employer is treating them fairly
  • 87% feel that overall, their employer has adapted well to the current situation. This is up from 60% of respondents in the Status of UK Fundraising 2020 Report which Blackbaud released in June 2020
  • 60% believe the public’s perception of their cause has improved for the better during the pandemic

Wellbeing and Personal Impact of the Pandemic

79% of the survey respondents said that they feel worried about the effect COVID-19 is having on their life right now, with a further 50% saying they believe their mental wellbeing has deteriorated.

The wellbeing of our people has been a primary focus over the last 12 months, we recognised the impact of working remotely and developed a range of resources and support to help to mitigate the impact. In particular we listened to feedback about the negative impact of spending too much time in virtual meetings, so we launched “zap zoom”, an initiative to reduce this.

Paul Amadi, Chief Supporter Officer, British Red Cross

Future of Work

The future is flexible – or at least, that’s what 90% of people in the sector want it to be. Whilst this doesn’t mean that people want to work entirely away from the office, a further 80% would like the option to work remotely more often post-pandemic. This shift in working preferences puts a spotlight on organisations and their existing work practices as there appears to now be a need to think about implementing flexible or hybrid working models if they wish to retain existing team members.

Overall, nearly three quarters of respondents said they had enjoyed working from home, however many feel that additional training would help them to work more effectively when out of the office. Key training areas included virtual brainstorming (51%), how to manage a team remotely (30%), software specific training (7%), and even advice on how to effectively run virtual meetings (40%).

“I’m hopeful in lots of ways, because what the team have demonstrated over the last year, above all things, is incredible resilience, flexibility and drive to care for our beneficiaries. We want to carefully, cautiously, and respectfully plan for the next phase when we’re more certain what that looks like.”

Hayley Grocock, CEO, Wakefield District Sight Aid

Read the full Future of Work report

The full Future of Work 2021 report, which is packed with lots of additional insights and stats, is available to download and read for free on the Blackbaud resources hub.

Plus! Our Head of Corporate Go-to-Market, Sally Falvey, and Blackbaud’s Director of People, Jon Walder, will be speaking at Fundraising Everywhere’s Charity Workplace Wellbeing Summit on the 22nd April. They will be talking through the report’s insights on the personal impact of the pandemic and reflecting on how Blackbaud and JustGiving’s strategy aligns with the report’s findings. We have an exclusive discount to attend the Wellness Summit, so make sure that you join us by visiting the Fundraising Everywhere website and using the promo code BBWellbeing for 50% off!

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Candid launches ‘U.S. social sector’ dashboard | Philanthropy news

Candid has launched a U.S. Social Sector Dashboard, a free resource designed to “demystify” the sector by providing data on its scope, constraints, and potential.

Developed with funding from Amazon Web Services and Vanguard Charitable, the dashboard offers key data and insights about the makeup and impact of civil society, including previously unreleased statistics on the racial composition of leaders and funding flows to charities. According to the dashboard, the social sector, which employs 12.5 million people, comprises more than 1.81 million nonprofit organizations: 501(c)(3) charitable organizations (80 percent), which include public charities (73 percent) and private or community foundations (7 percent); 501(c)(4) advocacy and social welfare groups (4 percent); 501(c)(6) business associations (4 percent); 501(c)(7) social and recreation clubs (3 percent); labor unions and other 501(c)(5) groups (3 percent); and fraternal societies categorized as 501(c)(8) and 501(c)(10) organizations (2 percent).

According to the dashboard, religious organizations currently make up 18 percent of public charities, followed by those focused on human services (17 percent), community and economic development (15 percent), education (14 percent), sports and recreation (8 percent), arts and culture (7 percent), philanthropy and nonprofit management (7 percent), health (7 percent), and the environment and animal welfare (4 percent). In terms of funding flow, in 2018 public charities received $292 billion in contributions from individuals, $76 billion from foundations, $40 billion from bequests, and $20 billion from corporations; $174 billion in government support; and $1.6 trillion in earned income.

And among reporting nonprofits, 60 percent of CEOs identified as white, 10 percent as Black, 5 percent as Latinx, 3 percent as Asian/AAPI, 1 percent as Native American/Indigenous, 3 percent as multiracial/multiethnic, and 1 percent as additional ethnicities, while 17 percent did not disclose. Among board members, 66 percent were white, 15 percent Black, 7 percent Latinx, 5 percent Asian/AAPI, 1 percent Native American/Indigenous, 2 percent multiracial/multiethnic, and 0.4 percent additional ethnicities, while 4 percent did not disclose.

“Candid exists to get people the information they need about the social sector to do good. Many of our tools focus on one organization, one grant, or one issue at a time; that kind of focus can be critical for decision makers,” said Candid executive vice president Jacob Harold. “This new dashboard builds on that focus by offering a fuller picture of the social sector as a whole. We hope that this tool will help people build a better understanding of the nonprofit and philanthropic ecosystem and its central role in our society.”

(Photo credit: GettyImages/Prostock Studio)

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UW–Madison receives $20 million for Letters & Science building | Philanthropy news

The University of Wisconsin–Madison has announced a $20 million lead gift from brothers and alumni Jeff Levy (’72) and Marv Levy (’68, JD ’71) in support of a new academic building in the College of Letters & Science.

Construction on Irving and Dorothy Levy Hall, named for the parents of Jeff and Marv, is expected to begin in 2023 and be completed in 2025. Once complete, the building will establish a unified home for the Department of History and nine other L&S academic departments, programs, and centers that currently are spread across eight facilities on campus. The five-story building will feature nineteen classrooms as well as a space where students can gather and interact informally with each other and their instructors to maximize collaboration.

The Levy brothers own and operate Phillips Distributing Corporation in Madison. Their commitment was contingent upon the Wisconsin state legislature and governor including the project in the 2021-23 state budget with $60 million in state support, which occurred earlier this year.

“We envision this vital new facility as a highly collaborative and state-of-the-art learning environment for all,” said College of Letters & Science dean Eric Wilcots. “We are immensely grateful to the Levy family for their support of this vision. Our students deserve classroom space that enhances interactive learning and engagement through cutting-edge technology. They also deserve a building that inspires, rather than intimidates. The Levy family’s gift will reverberate through future generations, touching many lives.”

“We are proud to help make this building a reality. We hope it will be a central educational location for the undergraduate experience at UW-Madison,” said Marv Levy. “Our hope is that by honoring our family legacy of charitable giving with this gift, we can offer to future generations some of the opportunity that the UW has provided us.”

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U.S. nonprofit sector uneven in impact and recovery, report finds | Philanthropy news

While nonprofits have contributed significantly to U.S. society and economy in the face of the COVID-19 pandemic, the health of the sector is uneven in both impact and recovery, a new report from Independent Sector finds.

Based on aggregated survey and research data from multiple sources in four categories — financial resources, human capital, governance and trust, and public policy and advocacy — the second edition of the Health of the U.S. Nonprofit Sector (43 pages, PDF) found that the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic varied by subsector and organization size, with arts organizations and those that rely on fees for service hit especially hard. Yet, even as 40 percent of nonprofits saw declines in total revenue and all subsectors except social services saw drops in gross output, the sector contributed 5.9 percent of GDP in 2020 — up 0.4 percentage points from 2019. And while 57 percent of nonprofits cut overall expenses, 64 percent suspended services, 44 percent reduced the number of programs or services, and 47 percent reported serving fewer people in 2020, Independent Sector’s Trust in Civil Society survey found that, as of early 2021, 57 percent of surveyed Americans had received nonprofit services and 84 percent expressed confidence in the ability of nonprofits to strengthen American society, up 3 percentage points from 2020.

According to the report, the sector’s advocacy efforts in 2020 helped secure notable federal resources that served as financial lifelines to nonprofits, particularly through the Paycheck Protection Program, payroll tax credits, and temporary universal charitable deduction. In addition, a study by Nonprofit VOTE found that voter engagement efforts helped reach underrepresented communities and narrow participation gaps.

The report outlines recommendations in each category to strengthen the sector, including prioritizing flexible funding, developing a shared understanding of equitable financing, promoting evidence-based practices to close workforce diversity and equity gaps, building capacity of virtual volunteering, improving the quality and depth of metrics for equity and “healthy” governance, improving digital access and literacy, and establishing public policy advocacy as a core competency of nonprofit management and governance.

“We have much to do to build the nation we, as changemakers, dream of becoming,” wrote Independent Sector president and CEO Dan Cardinali in the report’s foreword. “What can galvanize us to greater positive action? It’s that the everlasting human qualities of resilience, kindness, and collaborating for collective progress do not fade easily. They are within our grasp every day, giving all of us hope and confidence. The health of our nation is the sum of the richness and diversity of our members and sectors working together, elevating dignity, honoring our differences, and building for the common good.”

(Photo credit: Los Angeles Regional Food Bank)

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