Job Seeker Blog - Spark Hire

Nonprofit Work: 5 Ways to Increase Your Chances at Getting a Job

This is the first in a series of posts on what to expect working at a nonprofit. Stay tuned for more tips on how to land and keep a nonprofit job!

5. Know your tech.

Many nonprofits have only recently entered the 2013 tech world. Graphic design, social media, and other web skills are highly valued by nonprofits. Prove you can navigate the internet, and you’ve got a leg up on other candidates.

4. Prove you can wear many hats.

Many nonprofits operate within a small team. With a large number of tasks to complete, you need to be skilled in several departments. You can increase your chances of getting a nonprofit job by proving you’re a Jack of All Trades, as well as highlighting your teamwork skills.

3. Be passionate about a cause (and prove it!)

It’s not enough to share a charity tweet. Nonprofits are looking for you to genuinely care about helping others and doing good. You can find a range of volunteer opportunities on Chicago Cares.

2. Work from the ground up.

Be on a nonprofit’s radar by starting as a volunteer. There is no guarantee that volunteer work will lead to employment, and you should NOT volunteer under this assumption. However, when a job does open up, you will have a better insight into the company than other candidates.

1. Take informational interviews.

Come up with a list of thoughtful and relevant questions, then ask those who know nonprofits best. Do your research to find the right contact and then reach out via email. Remember, informational interviews are not opportunities to ask about job openings. Always make sure you are upfront and gracious.

What advice would you give someone who wants to work at a nonprofit? Let us know below!

IMAGE: Courtesy of Flickr by Paolo Mazzo

Ali Kelley

Ali is a freelance writer who blogs about nonprofits, tech and social media for Chicago startups, Zealous Good, Dabble, and Eventbrite. Since graduating college in 2009, she has learned a ton about job searching in a recession, and is excited to share her experiences. In addition to writing, Ali enjoys the finer things in life like pajamas that double as jeans.

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