Non-Profit Jobs in Ottawa


Non Profit Sector

By Staff Writer

After thirty seven years in the private sector involved in everything from middle management to CEO, you think you would like to try your hand working for a non-profit. So you hit your networking groups to see who knows what about non-profits. Surprising your business friends and networkers know little about the inside world of  Ottawa’s growing number of non-profit corporations and agencies.

What is a Non-Profit

Most people think that all non-profits are charities but that is not true. Many of them are. Most of them are working for the common good rather than the individual good. What makes them a non-profit is not that they do not bring in profitable revenue but rather that they do not provide profits to private people or investors. Rather all profit or revenue is either put back into the operation of the non-profit or used in some manner for the common good.

Some less common non-profits are advocacy groups, religious organizations, scientific organizations, blood banks and medical foundations and more. Non-profits, while having all the same types of positions as for profits in respect to accounting, communications etc., but other different positions such as fundraisers, volunteer directors, organizers and grant writers.

Pay Scales

So do non-profit pay considerably less that for profits and do staff work as volunteers or is everyone paid. This answer to this question is complicated. There are volunteers on staff at many non-profits and there are paid staffs as well. It is the company that does not make a profit. Most employees are paid. There are some volunteers but many organizations have no volunteers at all.

How much you are paid depends on the organization you work for. Some like blood banks and scientific foundations are incredibly competitive since they need the best people. While others like animal shelters might not be able to pay competitively. Salaries and benefits vary widely within the non-profit community.

Those non-profits that cannot afford to pay equally try to have better than for profit benefits. Things such as shared jobs, flexible schedules and more paid time off are typical higher value benefits.

Where are the Openings?

Non-profit hiring is about the same as for profit. Jobs will be advertised in the same places that for profit jobs are advertised. There are also online sites especially dedicated to non-profit jobs. One of the best known is, however the non-profit jobs are listed everywhere. The hiring systems all work pretty much the same as the non-profit world. The only difference is probably the biggest difference and that is that the candidate must have some appreciation of the agency or company, their mission and who they serve. They also need to care specifically about that mission and be able to articulate why.

You should note in your resume an interest in the work this agency does and even more so you should lay it out clearly in your cover letter. Note what you know about the agency, why you are attracting to the agency, and why you are attracted to the mission of the agency.


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