NGO Candidate Jobseeker Guide - How To Match Your Skills and Experiences With NGO Recruitment Goals

  • The Big Picture- NGO Recruitment Trends in 2022
  • How Valuable Is Corporate Experience for NGOs?
  • Passion is Important - But Don’t Let That Get In The Way of Your Application!
  • Candidate Honesty - Tell the Truth About your Skills and Abilities

As a jobseeker, looking at the Non-Governmental Organization (NGO) sector, you will need to understand the goals and objectives of the NGO whilst simultaneously understanding how your own skills and experiences compliment these key requirements. In this article we will outline how candidates can successfully match core skills and experiences with the demands and pressures faced by NGOs in order to maximize employee happiness and NGO organizational success.

The Big Picture - NGO Recruitment Trends

According to CharityJob, competition for talent will continue to grow rapidly in 2022 as more NGO organizations look to increase their human capital. What this means for jobseekers is that more organizations are actively searching for talent. However, with a global talent shortage, competition between NGOs is stark. ManPower Group, a UK recruitment provider, released data that suggests 75% of NGOs are struggling to recruit and maintain talent. This means, as a candidate with the right skills and experiences, you have the ability to accelerate your career and find the right role to match your own personal needs.

How Valuable Is Corporate Experience for NGOs?

Many jobseekers can be mildly put off by NGOs – they will presume that a corporate background will limit their suitability for NGO employment. However, according to research conducted by the EU, NGOs understand that limiting potential talent to the sector will diminish the pool of available talent. NGOs are readily aware that there is an on-going talent crisis in the sector – and crossover skills and experiences from corporate organizations can also help enhance NGO management and leadership. All of this means candidates need to think about how their skills can help NGOs achieve their goals and objectives.

Passion is Important - But Don’t Let That Get In The Way of Your Application!

Having passion is a central tenet of successful NGO employment – it will be a big part of the day-to-day culture in terms of delivering and achieving objectives. Nonetheless, NGOs understand that a candidate’s passion might not align with theirs. You might not have ever thought about wildlife protection, supporting critical infrastructure projects, or supporting vulnerable populations. And this isn’t a problem. NGOs understand that the skills and experiences you bring to the role are more important and that any preconceived “passion” which at any rate can be picked-up courtesy of the NGOs organizational culture.

Candidate Honesty - Tell the Truth About your Skills and Abilities

There is a talent shortage and a skills crisis within the wider NGO sector. This means that corporate onboarding of “talent” which many candidates experience isn’t necessarily replicated within the NGO ecosystem. This does not mean there is any lowering of professionalism or standards, but that fewer people have to do more roles in NGO environments. This means NGOs don’t have the ability to cope with frequent employee churn.

As a candidate, you need to be honest during application and interview stages. You need to make your skills and experiences relevant to the job description and personal specifications – and creatively connecting key skills with past employment is absolutely fine. However, embellishing skills and abilities that, if you are successful, would mean you would be ill-suited for the role could harm the NGO. Be mindful of how you match the role, and how the organization matches your needs.


The information in this guide is based on the personal opinions of the authors, and is presented in good faith. EuroJobsites do not accept any liability for errors, omissions or inaccuracies in this guide.

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