Recently we have noticed an increase in demand for interim managers for charities, whether it is an interim Head of Finance position or a six month Chief Executive role. These placements are evidence of a real upturn in a challenging sector. With donations down by some 20% last year (source: UK Giving), what benefits can hiring interim managers for charities give the organisations?
1. They Can Hit the Ground Running
Whether they come from the not for profit sector, or a more commercial background, today’s interim managers have the ability to assess an organisation fast and identify its needs. They can implement a strategy quickly that will improve performance and enable a swift transformation to growth.
2. They Have Extensive Experience
Most interims have a strong track record in senior management roles, both permanent and interim. This breadth of experience provides charities with a fresh perspective and a variety of best practice methods which can revitalise objectives and rejuvenate a team.
3. They Will Deliver
Unlike management consultants, interim managers are focused on implementation, not just advice. Successful delivery is absolutely key to professional interims. It may be an investment, however organisations using interims in “the 3rd sector” can be assured of results.
4. Commercial Acumen
Although some charities may insist on interims having relevant sector experience, a private sector professional can focus them to think differently about crucial areas such as stakeholder management or fundraising engagement and become much more outward facing in their perspective in order to gain competitive advantage.
5. Cost Effective, Short Term
As research shows, most charitable organisations are seeing a significant dip in donations, meaning that they must make savings and efficiencies in other areas whilst still creating positive awareness for their cause. A great advantage of hiring Interim managers for charities is that by their very nature can be hired for a matter of weeks. You can control the cost and not have to worry about the expensive overheads traditionally associated with a permanent hire.
6. Part time
Going even further, many charities who have opted to invest in interim management have also taken advantage of the part time option. Often, interims are brought into the sector on an advisory capacity to give the benefit of their experience. Some only need to do this two or three days a week – saving the organisation even more money.
What are Your Thoughts on Hiring Interim Managers for Charities?
So, just as companies in the private sector and providers in the public sector have done, charities and voluntary firms are now realising the many benefits that interim management can bring to help secure growth in what is still a tough economic environment.
Have you worked in the charity sector as an interim? or worked in a charity that has employed one? Share your experience with our interim community.