Handling turnover in the nonprofit world can make or break your organization. The quicker new hires can get up to speed with their grant writing skills, the better your agency will be positioned to secure needed grant funding more quickly. The key is training and making it a part of your pre-hiring process. This article will show you how.
While you will likely include “grant writing” in the list of preferred skills in your job description, the reality is that not enough candidates are trained to begin with. It would be great if universities required courses for all graduates. Few do.
Of course, you could persuade higher education institutions to require or at least recommend classes or seminars to students planning to work in the public sector. If you plan to be in the nonprofit business for the long-haul, speak with your local university faculty and administration; communicate your desire to have a trained pool of graduates to draw from.
Getting back to your list of preferred skills in your job description. In addition to preferring actual “experience in grant writing,” include “preferred coursework or training.” This might just be the motivation prospective employees need to seek out grant writing seminars and online courses to make them more competitive for the job. While short term training is not ideal, it can be a start. It shows initiative.
In your job description, also include training and development. That is, in addition to the specific roles and responsibilities you need filled, include “participate in professional development and on-the-job training” as a job responsibility. Including this up front will assure the applicant that you’re willing to provide training needed for them to do the best job possible. It will also get them thinking about training right from the start.
In your job interview, make sure to ask about their grant experience and any training they’ve taken. If they have none, ask if they would be willing to participate in training and on-going training to improve their skills once hired. Again, you’re planting the seeds so you don’t waste any time and that you’re serious about getting grant funding.
Once hired, include “grant writing training” in the employees’ annual plan. Make sure their supervisors are aware of this and understand the importance of keeping training and skill-building in the forefront of new hire’s mind. Tie training and performance into how the employees will ultimately be evaluated.
In summary, the more you do prior to the hiring process, the better positioned you and your agency will be ensure that proper training and performance will happen. 5 strategies mentioned in this article that set the foundation for ideal post-hire training are require “experience and/or training and coursework” in your list of preferred skills, communicating with your local university of the importance of trained graduated, include professional development and on-the-job training in the list of job responsibilities, ask about it in the applicant interviews, and include it in the annual plan and employee evaluation process.
As stated in this article, all new hires need training quickly either before or immediately upon being hired. We can help with short term and on-the-job training. Visit http://4Grants.Net for grant writing class information.