Last year, we received several variations of this client inquiry:
I’m hiring for a position and I want to make sure we have as diverse a candidate pool as possible. Where should I post my open positions?”
We love hearing that our clients want to dedicate their valuable time and energy to diversifying their candidate pools. Studies show that when you only have one woman or one person of color in a pool of four finalists, bias for the status quo means that the person on the margins has almost no chance of being hired. In order to have a more diverse group of finalists, you need to start with a diverse pool of candidates (and of course, take steps to mitigate bias throughout the process).
Before we dive in, here’s our PSA: Hiring is a lot like dating—before you can attract the right candidates, you have to do a lot of inner work. If your goal is to increase and sustain diversity at your organization, you’ll need to do a lot more than find the right websites on which to post your job openings. First, you’ll have to get clear and specific about what kind of diversity you want—whether that’s racial, gender, and/or something else. Then, you’ll have to get clear on your why, develop management practices to enable staff with marginalized identities to succeed, and create a culture that supports collective learning about racial and other types of equity and inclusion. Without doing the internal equity and inclusion work that’s needed to support and sustain it, you’ll end up building a revolving door for staff with marginalized identities.
With that said, onward to our answer! Below, we share tips for publicizing your job openings, including some specific resources for posting jobs.
General websites and email lists for nonprofit jobs
The primary benefit of posting on a major job board is that it’s pretty quick and painless. If you use an applicant tracking software to post jobs, you can likely post to the most popular job boards with the check of a box. Another plus is that perusing job boards is typically the first step in a person’s job-seeking quest, so you’ll get a lot of eyes on your posting. The main drawback is that you’ll be sifting through applications of varying quality, especially if you post to a job board that isn’t specific to nonprofit jobs.
You’ve probably already heard of some of the bigger nonprofit job boards like Idealist, Work for Good, and the National Council for Nonprofits. For some lesser known job boards, we’d recommend Sujata’s List, Democratic GAIN (which also manages the job opening listserv JobsthatareLEFT), and the Philanthropy News Digest (unlike most of the others we’ve mentioned, this one is free for nonprofits for up to ten postings per month!).
Targeted websites for improving the diversity of your pool
You can do targeted outreach by posting on job board websites or email listservs that serve specific communities. These can be identity-based, regional, professional affinity, or alumni groups (such as for schools, talent-sourcing organizations, or leadership development programs). If you’re looking for a particular level (entry-level, mid-level career, or senior) or type of experience (political campaign, policy, HR, etc.), or if you’re hoping to increase the representation of specific identities in your candidate pool, this can be a great option. Note that some of these resources require membership in order to submit job postings.
Here are some job boards to consider (note that most of these don’t specialize in nonprofit jobs, but have nonprofit job listings):
- Asian Americans/Pacific Islanders in Philanthropy—a jobs board for AAPI professionals, with philanthropy-related job postings submitted by individual and institutional members.
- Black Beltway—a closed Google group for African Americans in the DC/MD/VA region to share resources and opportunities, including job postings.
- Hispanic / Latino Professionals Association—a jobs board for Hispanic / Latino jobseekers.
- Inclusv—a community and talent database of people of color in politics and advocacy. Employers can submit job postings, which are distributed to members via a weekly email, for free.
- National Congress of American Indians—a jobs board for American Indian, Native Hawaiian, and Alaska Native jobseekers. To be approved for submission, you’ll need to meet one of the following criteria: the position requires a significant amount of interaction with tribal communities; the position requires specific skills such as fluency in a native language or knowledge of federal Indian law; and/or the organization is a member of NCAI in good standing.
- Recruit Disability—a jobs board for people with disabilities.
- ReproJobs—a “values-driven movement water cooler” for people to share jobs and resources related to reproductive health, rights, and justice.
Job boards and listservs are helpful for casting a wide net and recruiting passively. Social media is for spreading the word, proactively seeking out talent, and engaging with potential candidates (a strategy we highly recommend to any hiring manager). Our platform of choice is LinkedIn.
Here are some ways to use LinkedIn:
- Cast a wide net: Post job opportunities on the jobs platform.
- Find virtual “watering holes” for your sector: Join LinkedIn groups that are relevant to your organization or role and share your job postings.
- Get virtual word-of-mouth: Get your staff to share job opportunities with their networks.
- Talent scout: Use the search function to find potential candidates—simply type in the title of the role you’re filling (“Finance Director”), filter the search to “people,” and see who comes up. Then, reach out to the most promising people and share your job posting with an invitation to apply.
Have recommendations or favorite places to post your listings? Let us know by reaching out to firstname.lastname@example.org.