Overview Of The Charity Industry Commerce Essay

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This report focuses on the Charity and voluntary sector/industry. The first section of the report focuses on the analyses of the charity and voluntary sector and identifies trends and issues faced by charities in the current economical climate. A brief summary of the major key charitable players in the market today, using the PESTEL, SWOT and the Porters Five forces analysis to further evaluate the industry (these analyses can be found in appendix section 1.7). Also Identifies current graduate jobs of interest and concludes with a Gap analysis..

The second part of the report focuses on graduate job adverts, accompanied with my current curriculum vitae and finally an evaluation of an interview video.


Overview of the Charity Industry.

The charity sector has varied terminology and is fairly often addressed as the voluntary and community sector, third sector and non profit sector or "not for profit" sector.' "Charity" in its legal sense comprises of thirteen principal divisions under the 2006 Charities Act for the public benefit and working for:

The prevention or relief of poverty

Trusts for the advancement of education;

Trusts for the advancement of religion;

The advancement of health or the saving of lives

The advancement of citizenship or community development

The advancement of the arts, culture, heritage or science

The advancement of amateur sport

The advancement of human rights, conflict resolution or reconciliation or the promotion of religious or racial harmony and equality and diversity

The advancement of environmental protection or improvement

The relief of those in the need by reason of youth, age, ill health, disability, financial hardship or other disadvantage

The advancement of animal welfare

The promotion of the efficiency of the armed forces of the crown, or of the efficiency of the police, fire and rescue services and ambulance services

Any other purpose either recognised under existing charity law or within the spirit or analogous to any purposes falling within any of the proceeding criteria.

Charities Act 2006, available from:


The have two main sources where they receive their income from which are individual or statutory bodies.

Analysis of the Industry/Sector

While charities are continuing to deliver services to the people who need it, they are faced with the continued challenge of battling financial pressures. The UK during (2008) and (2009), experienced the longest post war recession which immediately impacted upon the private sector. This in its self has seen considerable reductions in public spending amidst a period of low growth impacted upon the public and charity and voluntary sector. According to the NCVO/CAF [1] (2011/12) UK Giving 2012 survey which shows donations fell by 20%. The public gave 1.7bn less to charity than the previous years, given that there has been a considerable drop in both take home pay and disposable income over the same period. Amongst other key findings were:

Giving cash is the most common method of giving, used by half of the donors.

Participation in charitable giving nevertheless remains relatively widespread with over half of the adults giving in 2011/12.

Women continue to be more likely to give to charity than men (58% compared to 52%).

Also for the first time since the survey began, the proportion of donors using gift Aid has dropped from 42% in 2010/11 to 39% in 2011/12.

In 2011/12 medical research was supported by 33% of donors and was the most popular cause, as for all previous years of the survey.

UK Giving 2012 (National Council for Voluntary Organisations/Charities Aid Foundation 2011/12).

The Charity Commission research suggests that larger charities have been hit hard as opposed to the smaller ones which have been more insulated from changes in the wider economy. At the same time shows that the rate of formal volunteering declined during the recession period 2007/08 from 43% to 36% of people in 2010/11. Some have argued that reduced capacity in volunteering involving organisation and intermediaries has been a factor too. It is also known that those put of work are generally less likely to volunteer than those in work. The Voluntary Sector Cuts website, which was launched in January 2011, by January 2012, showed 509 cuts had been reported, with a value of 77 million. Roughly two thirds of the cuts reported identified local government as a source of their funding. Other contributing factors include. (Also see appendices 1.7a).

The demand on all organisations is increasing whilst still trying to support the needs of the most vulnerable.

Also agencies without specialist knowledge and expertise with specific client groups, are winning service delivery contracts over charities, largely because they are more adept at the tendering process.

Also government intervention is needed, to encourage opening up of commissioning processes and by removing the complexity to initiatives such as the Gift Aid Small Donations Scheme so that charities can benefit.

Charity Forecast Survey (25/10/12) By NCVO

1.3a Key players in the chosen Industry


Oxfam which was originally founded in Oxford UK is a globally renowned aid and development charity which dates back to the Second World War. They are currently concerned with longer term development and ensuring that local people can help themselves to fight their way out of poverty. A famine in Bihar. India in 1951 prompted the first campaign in a 'developing' country, 1959 the UN's decision to declare 'world refugee year' and the international freedom from the hunger campaign the following year were important milestones in making Oxfam a household name. They have more than 800 shops with about 22000 volunteers and sell donated items and handicrafts. An important role the have played is to try to achieve to improve the image of the worlds poorer as human beings rather than passive victims.


British Red Cross

The British Red Cross is part of the International Red Cross and Red Crescent movement which comprises of:

The International Committee of the Red Cross;

The International Federation of the Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies and

183 National Red Cross and Red Crescents Societies worldwide.

A humanitarian led organisations who help people in crisis, whoever and wherever they are and that includes the UK. They have partnerships around the UK with emergency response services that include: Fire and rescue services, ambulance services and local authorities. Offer first aid course to organisations and vulnerable people. Assist in social care and maintain disaster funds. Offer refugees services while also maintaining international sustaining programs that offer development. Offer humanitarian education in schools regarding international humanitarian law.

As a member, the British Red Cross is committed to and bund by the Fundamental principles which include: humanity, impartiality, neutrality, independence, voluntary service, unity and voluntary service. They are the UKs leading emergency response charity and have around 3,500 staff and 32,500 volunteers


Cancer Research UK

Cancer Research UK was formed in February 2002 by the merger of Imperail cancer research Fund and the Cancer Research Campaign. UK's two leading cancer research charities in the terms of size and voluntary income (Mintel, 2001)

1.3b Trends in the Charity and voluntary sector

Mintel (2010), states that majority of the large charities have a number of awareness and fundraising campaigns, and reaching their audiences via new media is common place: email shots, viral video campaigns, SMS texting, blogs and social networking sites, such as facebook and twitter are also utilised. A good example is the British red cross, whom up and till last year had never used television adverts to advertise their services. They launched a national TV advert on the 24/9/12 to reach the public to highlight the people they have helped in the UK. Organisations such as Cancer research UK, Macmillan Cancer research and Save the Children had long been using the media.

Research shows that Women are said to make up about 68% of the charity and voluntary workforces, however they greatly remain under-represented in positions for leadership. It is also women who are more likely to give to charity both as volunteers and as donors.

Rowen Lewis (2010) presumes that the voluntary sector women could be the first to smash the infamous "glass ceiling" relative to the counterparts in the public and private sector and in government, as 46% nearly half of their Chief executives are women compared with 29% of the civil service top managers, 22% of MP's and just 14% of FTSE 100 directors.

According to the National Council for Voluntary Organisations 2011 show that in 2010 there were 765,000 people employed in the UK's voluntary sector. This was an increase of 40% since 2001 and represents about 2.7% of the UK's workforce.

1.3c Key issues in the charity and voluntary sector

It is important for the sector to continuously keep up to date with current changes in government and non government policy. New current changes include financial reporting for charities and the allocation of the lottery fund. There is also a current pilot scheme that demands the unemployed who are aged between 18-24 and have spent less than six months in a job, to volunteer without pay for up to three months or face losing their unemployment benefits

Cutbacks also in the private sector have affected the voluntary sector and have led to diversification of activities or development of new partnerships with private sector business.

However on a positive note, the voluntary sector looks to top benefit from social media such as twitter and facebook as they enable fast effective targeting of potential donors, volunteers and contributors for fundraising and other campaigns aimed at internet users.

1.4 Self analysis. (Suited to charity and volunteer sector-role reward management (HRM)

After completion of my degree, I would like to explore further into the charitable sector as a reward manager. From a young age I have loved philanthropy. As an individual, I am a very hardworking, focused and confident individual who is constantly seeking to thrive in a very demanding and completive industry. As a human resource management practioneer, they are vital attributes one must hold. After researching thoroughly through relevant material, I was able to find this source below that gave a clear outline of nine qualities all HR professionals should have:

Clarity of thought

Efficiency in time management

Be able to compare performances, situations and circumstances, but not compare individuals and people.

Knowledge about the business and industry.

Vision and Goal for the Department, team and organisation


Trust worthy

Enthusiasms to share ideas, develop, coach and monitor.

Love for data, figures, calculations analysis and projections

http://www.citehr.com/60424-nine-qualities-all-hr-professionals-should-have.html accessed on 01/11/12

Having studied these particular requirements stated above, I have realised that I do posses a number of the qualities and some are still a work in progress. However having been a volunteer for the British Red Cross since 2008, I have managed to build a good repro with the organisation at the same time manage to acquire different skills in different areas. Currently in the training and development department, have had the opportunity to be a school speaker which has boosted my knowledge about the organisation and the activities they do.

According to target jobs charity (How do I get a graduate job in a charity?) "Says that speculative applications and flexibility is the key to getting a job in the charity sector as vacancies in small organisations may only be advertised locally or in specialist publications. Larger organisations are likely to have the resources to advertise more widely. Also states that whatever the organisation you would like to work for, it's always helpful to get your name known: consider volunteering or doing temporary work for an organisation or simply get in touch and ask how and where they advertise". With already having the advantage of volunteering and the degree I am studying, BA Human Resource Management, this will aid me in developing my understanding of the industry particular in the Human resource management function. The modules studied which include; Work psychology, Managing information, Work. Employment and society, managing employee performance, recruitment, selection and retention, employee development, managing diversity, employment and industrial relations law, cross cultural management and organisational analysis and design all contribute to the greater understanding of why and how these organisations do exist and why I feel drawn to work in this particular sector.

1.5 Opportunities for graduates

Graduate jobs in the industry sector/particular interest to me;

Graduates entering the charities and voluntary sector can expect;

High levels of work satisfaction

A relatively low salary compared to the private sector. Although pay differs enormously depending on the job role

Good opportunities for career progression and development

Completion to be high for paid employment

They are also a number of websites offering charity and voluntary job roles such as which serves as a good service point to look for desired roles. These sites include just to name a few:

Jobs in charity http://www.jobsincharities.co.uk/

Charity jobs http://www.charityjob.co.uk/

Third sector http://jobs.thirdsector.co.uk/

Total Jobs http://www.totaljobs.com/search/not-for-profit-charities-jobs

Fish4jobs http://charity.fish4jobs.co.uk/

Having looked through the sites mentioned above, they are quite a number of roles in the sector that I feel I maybe still suitable for as point of development.

1.6 Track Record (Gap Analysis)

From 2008, I took an interest in the voluntary sector mainly because I was looking to offer my services and build up my curriculum vitae with further experience out of a paid work role. I was able to move from different departments within the organisation and further my skills in other areas that were not necessary related to my ideal job specification, but nonetheless receive the training for free, which if I was not volunteering, I would have to finance the training through very expensive training organisations. Having looked at the roles in the charitable sector that are geared towards human resource management, I have come to the conclusion that in order to achieve the desired role in a reward management role, I will be at an advantage with achieving a 2:1 which is most desirable or a 2:2 with working towards a (CIPD) Chartered Institute of Personal development qualification in reward management.

I have worked in the retail sector and had the privilege to work for Marks and Spencer. I started right down from the bottom of the grid (Customer Advisor) working in several departments right to being a Human Resource Advisor. The organisation operates on a sophisticated paternalistic (adopt a unitary stance) environment and is of the private sector. Unions therefore are not very favourable or influential and they tend to sort out employee issues through a central organisation called BIG within the organisation run by employees. "Marks and Spencer is known for its caring attitude towards staff, pioneering the provision of benefits ranging from hot lunches to healthcare. One of the principles on which the company was built and now a core value was to 'foster good human relations with customers, suppliers and staff'. (Whitehead, 1999 p.108).

Currently due to complete my degree this year with an added advantage of working as a Customer Relationship Manager for Ladbrokes Plc, while at the same time volunteering with the Red Cross on my free days, I have managed to pick up a number of essential skills to put me in the right direction. However these roles, I have held me not entail the desired role specifications, I would have to work towards gaining more experience in the reward management field to give me a higher advantage. This may also be a result in me taking on a more generalist Human Resource role. Having spoken to the recruiter at the Red Cross branch in Wimbledon, regarding reward management roles, I was made aware that the application process involves a numerical test. My mathematical skills are strong to a certain degree depending on the angle that is required, and therefore this may be my weak point. However management wise, I would say is my strongest point as most of degree modules consisted of different management roles in different aspects such as the organisation, the employee and employer aspect, the environment and the culture. This added onto my current set of skills may serve as a good opportunity to get my foot into the door.