Three reasons why an MBA can help graduates land a charity job

14 April 2021 3 min. read
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The number of graduates completing a Master of Business Administration (MBA) in the UK has been growing for years. In the current academic term, more than 12,000 students are enrolled in an MBA programme, rising from fewer than 8,500 over five years.

While most MBA graduates decide to pursue a career in the private sector – including in the consulting industry – every MBA graduate needs to consider all the options best suited to their skills and ambitions, as they begin the hunt for MBA graduate jobs. One of the sectors often overlooked by many is the not-for-profit and charity sector – three reasons why an MBA could be an ideal ticket to landing a charity job.

1. MBAs are highly regarded in the not-for-profit sector

MBAs are internationally recognised as exceedingly valuable degrees. The skills students acquire from them mean that the global not-for-profit sector looks highly at MBA holders, and is consistently seeking out graduates.

In Australia, for instance, research from PwC has shown that the competition of roles in the not-for-profit industry is becoming increasingly intense. More players in the sector means more competition, and charity organisations need to continuously find new and innovative ways of fundraising. MBA graduates bring a certain level of expertise and finesse to furthering these goals.

2. Charities need expertise in governance, finance and management

Given the massive growth in the global not-for-profit sector, many charities are now large organisations that feature complex governance, management and finance systems. At the end of the day, charities are still just businesses with many similarities to businesses in the private sector. As a result, they need staff who can easily navigate the ins-and-outs of a complex business structure and set it up for success.

An MBA graduate will hold all of the skills needed to make that happen. MBA degrees touch on a wide variety of fields, from strategy and management to finance and operations, meaning that MBA graduates will bring a well-rounded brand of expertise which every charity needs to thrive.

3. Balancing social objectives with financial health

Charities are a very specific type of business; they need to walk the fine line between staying true to the vision of the organisation (raising money for their given cause), while remaining financially viable, so that they can hire staff and fund projects toward their core goals.

MBA graduates have learned how to effectively prioritise strategy, competition and leadership – all key to both achieving a business’ objectives, and to keep it afloat while doing so. Such acumen is needed by charity organisations, making MBA graduates desirable hires in the not-for-profit industry.

In summary, having an MBA can make you an extremely desirable candidate in the charity sector and can give you a competitive advantage over other candidates. Clearly, there are many ways an MBA could help graduates land a charity job in the not-for-profit sector, and to succeed in that role.

Given the significant growth in the industry, as well as the extremely valuable skill sets MBA graduates possess, charity organisations are constantly on the lookout for MBA holders, so graduates would be well advised to start exploring their prospects in the not-for-profit sector as soon as possible.