Professional fundraising consultants can provide assistance in every aspect of fundraising management and operations for charities and non profit organizations. Typically they are hired to assist with projects for which the organization does not have necessary internal resources such as staff or skills to take on major fundraising projects such as capital campaigns or planned giving. Consultants are also often hired because of the third party, external perspective they bring; they are far enough removed to have perspective on how your organization can improve its overall fundraising or some particular aspect of it. Further to this, consultants are far enough removed to help an organization realize that it may have necessary internal resources and assist the organization to better manage those resources.
Consultants are also hired to assist when an organization is in between positions, such as development directors or other fundraising staff.
While hiring a consultant with specific knowledge of your charity's sector is preferable, examining the experience of consultants with a wide variety of expertise is important.
It is also important to keep in mind that consultants should not:
Be paid based upon the amount nor the percentage of funds raised. Crossroads Consulting adheres to the AFP Ethical Code which prohibits percentage-based compensation as it can provide reward without merit. For more information about the Code, please see our home page.
Be responsible for directly soliciting the funds from your constituency. Although consultants may be used as part of a team of volunteers or staff who solicit, they are there mainly to assist you and your organization with advice, training and overall co-ordination. The relationships of your donors should remain attached with your organization, not to a consultant who is there only temporarily.
Guarantee that you will be able to raise a specific amount of funds. There is no way a consultant can do this. The guarantee should be based upon the deliverables of the services set forth in the proposal or subsequent written contract.