Closing the fundraising skills gap

Posted on 07 May 2024

By Greg Thom, journalist, Institute of Community Affairs Australia

Comm advocate podcasts audio

Podcast: The nation's peak body representing professional fundraisers in Australia has called for the federal government to officially recognise fundraising as a skilled occupation.

Fundraising Institute Australia CEO Katherine Raskob said listing "fundraiser" on the Australian and New Zealand Classification of Occupations (ANZCO) would be a crucial step in attracting more talented people to the role, particularly from overseas.

The move is one of a number of initiatives Ms Raskob said needed to happen to address the skills shortage she believes is holding the fundraising sector back amid a decline in donors, intense competition between charities and increased demand for services.

In a wide-ranging interview with the Community Advocate, Ms Raskob:

  • called for a communications campaign by charitable fundraisers aimed at attracting talented purpose driven people in the for-profit sector to consider a role in fundraising
  • urged charities to consider hiring fundraisers based on the skills they need and invest time and money in training rather than emphasising experience in an attempt at a quick fundraising fix
  • said a significant increase in training is required to cope with the demand for new digital fundraising skills along with challenges such as data handling, cyber security and AI

“I would say it [fundraising skills gap] is at a fairly critical stage now and each year it gets worse and worse,” said Ms Raskob.

Listen to the Community Advocate podcast to hear more about what Katherine thinks needs to be done to address fundraising challenges across the sector.

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