This article was written by Matt Till, Senior Consultant at Prospectus. Prospectus – one of the UK’s leading recruitment specialists for the nonprofit industry. Founded in 1956, Prospectus places over 2,000 people a year across all levels in their ideal role.
So you've decided on a digital role in the charity sector - what next? How can you make yourself stand out in a competitive marketplace?
Charities are developing and exploring digital in a wide range of areas from fundraising to service delivery, which means there are lots opportunities for new talent to join their teams. Here are some top tips to make your application stand out.
1. Know where to look
There are plenty of specialist job sites available that cater to a wide range of job roles and sectors. Charity Digital Jobs
is the only specialist jobs board in the UK for digital roles in the charity sector, with hundreds of roles available at any time - check them out and sign up to their job alerts to stay up to date.
You should also look at registering with recruitment agencies; they don’t just give advice on your job search, but can help with your CV and applications. Register with them now and they can share their knowledge and guide you through the job application process.
2. Showcase your diverse skills and experience
You don’t have to have previously worked in a charity to get a job in one - digital skills aren’t confined to a specific sector and having diversity in experience and skills is a positive. Having talent with a variety of skills benefits smaller charities that don’t currently have the resource and larger charities that are operating in a fast-paced digital environment.
If you have an opportunity to gain experience outside of the charity sector, think about what different skills and experience you could gain and evidence these clearly and factually on your CV.
3. Upskill online
There are a variety of free courses available to anyone at any time, particularly around digital marketing. Building your digital skills on your own initiative and increasing your knowledge in a broad range of areas in your spare time is always a positive for any employer. Google offers free courses on many of its platforms through its Digital Garage
It's worth also checking out paid options such as Udemy
if you are interested in investing further in some more in-depth training.
If you have time to volunteer it's a perfect way to show your passion and gain skills in the sector. However, if you haven’t volunteered it isn’t a deal breaker; you may be able to evidence your involvement in other ways such as fundraising or campaigning.
Being engaged in the sector in any way you can is an opportunity for you to build your skills, work for a cause you are passionate about and build contacts within the sector. But your CV will really benefit from finding volunteer roles that are relevant to the job you are after and allow you to utilise your digital skillset.
The BBC lists some great digital volunteer matching programmes
, and sites such as Reach Volunteering
are designed to connect willing volunteers with causes and roles that suit them.
5. Don't forget to Google yourself
Personal digital presence is something that every job searcher should consider. In the same way that you can easily find out information about a charity, the team and even who you might be interviewed by, they can also find out information about you.
Look at the way you use Twitter, Facebook and LinkedIn and use the platforms to evidence your skills and any qualifications and courses you have completed. These platforms are also great places for you to engage with charities you are passionate about, and liking and sharing their content is a great way to get involved.