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Director, Prospect Development & Research

Apply now Job no: 494517
Work type: Regular
Location: Hybrid
Categories: Salaried

Title: Director, Prospect Development & Research

Department: Institutional Advancement Mgmt.

Duration: Indefinite


Job Summary

Reporting to the Senior Director of Advancement Services and in partnership with Senior Leadership – including Individual Giving, Principal Gifts, and the Manager, Salesforce Administration and Business Intelligence – the Director of Prospect Development & Research oversees the identification, research, and analysis of potential donors, developing comprehensive strategies for managing donor relationships. By ensuring the effective use of data analytics, the Director informs and enhances fundraising strategies, contributing to pipeline development across all areas. Leading a dedicated team of two full-time staff, this role ensures the creation of robust gift officer portfolios aligned with institutional priorities and adapts to emerging priorities mid-cycle. Oversees the development of event and travel briefings for Senior Leadership and the President, conducting due diligence research for major and principal donors, and establishing institutional policies and database practices. Through these efforts, the Director transforms data into actionable insights, maximizing operational effectiveness and driving the institution’s philanthropic success.

This position is based in Los Angeles, CA and may be eligible for a hybrid work schedule.


Job Duties

  • 20% - Prospect Pipeline Building and Management - Define and document the criteria for strong prospects through analysis, staff consultations, and organizational knowledge. Support the development of a fundraising strategy for the maturation of the prospect development pipeline – from engagement to annual fund giving through major gifts and planned giving. Lead prospect strategy, portfolio review, and moves management meetings with fundraisers to ensure comprehensive qualification efforts and healthy portfolio churn. Develop and implement orientation and ongoing training sessions for the prospect management program. Determine and document relationship management data standards, ensuring consistency in data recording, searching, exporting, and policy governance. Partner with the donor relations team to develop and implement effective stewardship strategies to align stewardship activities with overall fundraising strategies and goals. - (Essential)
  • 20% - Prospect Development Strategy - In collaboration with the AVP of Individual Giving and Senior Director of Advancement Services, operationalize the annual work plan process for fundraising teams and individual gift officers to meet fundraising goals across teams and priorities Oversee the development and documentation of gift officer metrics, and the creation of reports and dashboards that provide real-time insights into portfolio performance. Develop and deploy an annual leadership-giving prospect pool initiative. Collaborate with senior IA leadership to refine the definitions and metrics of fundraising and gift officer success, coordinating the development of necessary reports to monitor activity and outcomes. Run monthly Prospect Management Meetings with the fundraising team. - (Essential)
  • 20% - Prospect Development Policy, Database Management, and Analytics - Develop and implement institutional policies and procedures for prospect development and management, ensuring alignment with best practices and organizational goals. This includes setting standards for data entry, prospect tracking, and reporting to ensure consistency, accuracy, and compliance across the team. Serve as a subject matter expert in database management and analytics, building and documenting the database to support prospect development in partnership with the Manager, Salesforce Administration, and Senior Director of Advancement Services. Oversee data hygiene practices for prospect research data points. Utilize prospect screening tools to ensure appropriate portfolio composition for all gift officers, collaborating with IA leaders to grow portfolio coverage. Audit and develop a research tool procurement and utilization strategy, ensuring the effective use of prospect development and research vendors. Develop a roadmap for prospect development and portfolio management applications in Salesforce, in partnership with advancement services leadership. Deploy advanced data visualizations and predictive models to assist gift officers and enhance fundraising efforts. Utilize tools within the Salesforce ecosystem, such as CRM Analytics (formerly Tableau), to create dynamic dashboards and reports that provide actionable insights and support strategic decision-making in prospect identification and donor engagement. - (Essential)
  • 15% - Campaign Planning - Support campaign readiness activities related to prospect research, including conducting comprehensive feasibility studies to assess the potential and readiness for campaign initiatives. As the College transitions into the next comprehensive campaign, support the development of priority-specific prospect pools and conduct in-depth research to identify and qualify potential donors, ensuring alignment with campaign objectives. Leverage advanced tools within the Salesforce ecosystem—such as Education Cloud, CRM Analytics (formerly Tableau), and iWave for Salesforce—to enhance prospect research capabilities and optimize campaign planning and execution. - (Essential)
  • 15% - Prospect Screening, Data Analysis and Briefings - Oversee prospect evaluation and analysis methodology, conduct routine checks, and deploy updated methodologies annually. Streamline processes for briefing requests and deliverables, ensuring high-quality and comprehensive requests for events, gift officer travel, presidential and board requests, and gift review committees. Conduct due diligence background checks on potential donors to ensure alignment with the institution's mission and culture, and to mitigate any potential risks. - (Essential)
  • 10% - Supervision - Manage the prospect development and research team which includes two full-time staff and a part-time student employee. Stay current with trends, best practices, and ethical standards in the field of prospect development and research by actively engaging with professional organizations such as APRA (Association of Professional Researchers for Advancement) and CASE (Council for Advancement and Support of Education). Adhere to the APRA Code of Ethics to ensure all prospect development activities are conducted with integrity and professionalism. - (Essential)


Minimum Qualifications

Bachelor's degree in liberal arts, mathematics, data analytics, research or other fields related to position responsibilities. Seven years of progressively responsible experience in prospect research, donor cultivation strategy, development, or management within higher education, nonprofit, or philanthropic institutions.. One year of experience in managing and leading a team, with a focus on developing and implementing prospect development strategies. Two years of experience in fundraising strategies, donor relations, and managing donor pipelines. Demonstrated proficiency in using CRM systems (preferably Salesforce) and data analytics tools to drive decision-making and strategy. Proven ability to manage complex projects, including campaign planning and execution, data integrity initiatives, and the development of policies and procedures. Demonstrated ability to analyze data and provide actionable insights for fundraising strategies. High level of proficiency with CRM systems, data analytics tools, and prospect research tools. Ability to think strategically and develop long-term plans that align with organizational goals. Ability to analyze, synthesize and organize data, and present findings in a comprehensible manner for different audiences. Proficiency in Microsoft Office applications (Word, Excel, PowerPoint), Google drives/folders/forms, Adobe Acrobat, Web Editing, and social media applications or any combination of productivity programs applicable to position responsibilities. Demonstrated ability to be detail-oriented and thorough; skilled at anticipating and preventing potential problems and handling a wide variety of tasks with efficiency and accuracy. Strong commitment to a quality work product. Demonstrated ability to effectively communicate verbally, in writing and electronically. Effective interpersonal skills as evidenced in the ability to collaborate with a variety of constituencies. Demonstrated commitment to justice, equity, inclusion & diversity. Demonstrated skill in adapting to and performing work effectively in high-volume, high accountability, confidential environment with multiple and changing priorities. Effective organizational, logistical, time management and planning skills with the ability to manage and prioritize multiple tasks/projects simultaneously, prioritize and fulfill the functions of an office in a timely manner. Ability to self-motivate and work independently. Ability to provide effective leadership and training, and to work effectively and professionally across functions, disciplines, levels, and with diverse groups. Knowledge of contemporary leadership and management methods to ensure employee success and achievement, and demonstration of related and applicable skills as evidenced by the ability to effectively direct, assess and evaluate performance of direct reports. Ability to effectively design, define, describe and document job functions, responsibilities, tasks, and required qualifications associated with supervised positions, and the demonstrated skills in assessing candidates’ experience, knowledge, skills and abilities when hiring for vacant positions, ensuring the best choice of candidate. Ability to provide employee development, training and opportunities for direct reports to demonstrate performance achievement and success; recognizing performance of both above standards and needs improvement and respond accordingly. Skilled at communicating feedback verbally, in writing and electronically; and documenting performance via introductory and annual performance appraisals. Skilled in developing and determining corrective employment/performance/behavioral strategies, as needed. Demonstrated ability to design and execute performance improvement plans, conducting disciplinary action and/or determining the appropriateness of employment continuation.


Preferred Qualifications

Master’s degree in a field related to position responsibilities. Experience with tools like CRM Analytics (formerly Tableau) and iWave for Salesforce.


EXPECTED HIRING RANGE:  $88,000-$94,000/yr

If you are offered this position at Occidental College, your final base salary compensation will be determined based on factors such as skills, education, experience, and/or geographic location. In addition to those factors, Occidental complies with applicable pay equity laws and considers internal equity among current employees when developing the final offer. Please keep in mind that the range mentioned above is the base salary range for the role. Hiring at the maximum of the range would not be typical in order to allow for future and continued salary growth.  We also offer a generous compensation and benefits package.


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