As Economy Rebounds, Nonprofits Anticipate More Turnover in Staff, Survey Finds

Even as more nonprofits are adding staff, many organizations are anticipating an increase in the turnover rate of their employees, a new survey from Nonprofit HR Solutions finds.

Conducted in partnership with the Improve Group, the National Nonprofit Employment Trends Survey found that 43 percent of nonprofits reported that staff headcount increased in 2011, compared with 34 percent of nonprofits in 2010. The survey also found that 43 percent of nonprofit organizations plan to add new positions in 2012. And while most organizations do not expect their overall turnover rate to increase this year, they are anticipating an increase in retirements and voluntary resignations.

According to Nonprofit HR Solutions, the findings suggest that nonprofits need stronger retention programs. Yet, three-quarters of nonprofits do not have formal staff retention strategies in place. And while the majority of nonprofits rate workplace diversity as important, many face challenges in securing and retaining a diverse workforce.

"We have alerted the sector of these trends for the last few years," said Lisa Brown Morton, president and CEO of Nonprofit HR Solutions. "The economy and job market have turned a corner, but unfortunately, according to our survey results, nonprofits are not investing in retaining their key talent as they probably need to. We really need to get prepared for greater turnover when the sector's top talent starts to jump ship this year as opportunities in the private and nonprofit sectors begin to open up."

"Nonprofit Retention Strategies Not Ready for a New Economy." Nonprofit HR Solutions Press Release 03/20/2012.