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Funding issues biggest cause of skills gaps in small charities says FSI

Lack of funding for training and development is the biggest cause of skills gaps in small charities, research from the FSI has shown.

61% of 530 people surveyed in the FSI’s Small Charity Sector Skills Survey said this was the primary cause for skills gaps in their charities, followed by lack of time for employees to attend training, which was cited by 58%.

Skills areas identified as having the poorest performance ratings in the survey included: fundraising, specifically raising funds from major donors (67%), online (66%) and businesses (64%), and engaging and working with businesses or companies (identified by 55%), strategic use of IT (49%), and impact reporting (48%).


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The survey also looked at the impact of skills gaps, identifying the biggest issues as: an increased workload for colleagues (59%), increased time to deliver work (46%) and decreased ability to take on new work (43%).

Within fundraising, major donor fundraising (67%), online fundraising (66%) and corporate fundraising (64%) were the top three categories in need of most upskilling by small charities.

Fundraisers were cited as the most challenging vacancy to recruit for, according to 28% of small charities surveyed, while salary (identified by 36%) was the most commonly cited barrier to filling vacancies.

The FSI’s recommendations include: