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Donor Experience Manager - Development and Alumni Relations Office - 48674 - Grade 7

University of Birmingham
United Kingdom
£31,406 to £40,927 with potential progression once in post to £43,434
Closing date
Oct 21, 2021

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Pharmaceutical, Sales
Jobseeker Type
Academic (e.g. 'Lecturer')
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Job Details

Position Details

Development and Alumni Relations Office

Location: University of Birmingham, Edgbaston, Birmingham UK

Full time starting salary is normally in the range £31,406 to £40,927 with potential progression once in post to £43,434

Grade 7

Full Time


Closing date - 31st October 2021

Job Summary

Do you want to be part of a dynamic and innovative fundraising team? Do you want to raise money for some of society's most pressing challenges and play a key role in a new and ambitious fundraising and volunteering campaign?

We are an ambitious and successful research-intensive University (one of the top 100 research-led universities globally) and have produced 10 Nobel Prize winners, including three who received their awards in 2016. Academics here are tackling some of the world's most pressing global challenges such as: antibody testing and Covid-19, the impact of climate change on our woodlands and forests, issues caused by migration and displacement, the rise in youth mental health issues, and the prevention of needless maternal deaths in the developing world. Our students come from nearly 150 countries and our flagship outreach programmes mean that almost 25% of our student population come from disadvantaged backgrounds, one of the highest proportions in the UK.

Philanthropy has always played an important role in shaping the University, in 2015 we closed the Circles of Influence Campaign which raised £193 million, making it the largest HE fundraising campaign outside Oxbridge and London.

In 2019 we launched the Birmingham In Action campaign, which aims to transform lives for our generation and the next by tackling some of the world's greatest challenges. The campaign is truly global (having launched in Birmingham, London, Hong Kong, New York and San Francisco) and aims to raise £400 million, and secure 1 million hours of volunteering, making it one of the largest campaigns in the UK Higher Education sector.

The Donor Experience Manager role is your opportunity to join our established team at an exciting time. Stewardship and donor engagement are vital activities to the success of any philanthropic campaign helping us to bring the impact of donations to life. In doing so, donors are encouraged to continue their giving, and to increase and diversify their support. This role will also oversee the management of several of our giving circles as well as being responsible for thanking content and impact reports.

Although the role sits within the major giving space the Donor Experience Manager will lead the programme of activity from planning to implementation, supporting all areas of fundraising and actively collaborating with our Insight, Campaign Management, Communications and Events Teams at every opportunity, as well as building internal connections across the University to delivery donor engagement activity.

The successful candidate will have a real passion for stakeholder management, outstanding communication skills with experience in writing for impact, leading on creating digital content, and an understanding of the needs and expectations of different audiences. They will be able to balance creativity and imagination with a structured, thoughtful and organised approach to their work and importantly manage upwards as well as matrix working across the office.

As an office, we are committed to sustainability and value green working practices. The environment is an integral part of our campaign and we encourage eco-friendly ways of working in order to have a positive impact on our campus and global surroundings.

Main Duties

The Donor Experience Manager will lead donor engagement activity across DARO and the wider University. They will be responsible for:
  • Planning, managing and delivering a comprehensive donor engagement strategy, programme and budget that builds donor affinity to the University, and encourages retained, reactivated, uplifted and diversified support.
  • Developing, implementing, maintaining and promoting donor engagement strategies and policies.

The Donor Engagement Team will work closely with colleagues in fundraising at all levels to ensure appropriate donor journeys, templates and thanking are developed in line with our campaign themes. There will be particular focus in this role on supporting major giving, charitable partnerships and the DARO Senior Leadership Team with their account management of six figure+ donors through tailored programming and bespoke engagement activities.

Line Management and accountability

The role will involve management of one direct line report but matrix working across several support functions within the University. This will include:
  • Oversight of the full donor experience programme, including overseeing a robust workplan and where the Donor Experience Officer will lead on activity.
  • As programme lead you will have responsibility for developing and delivering against key performance indicators set to measure the success of donor engagement activity that are reviewed quarterly.
  • Actively seeking ways to innovate and improve the stewardship and donor engagement programme through collaboration across DARO, the wider University, other HE institutions and charities across the third sector.
  • Promotes equality and values diversity acting as a role model and fostering an inclusive working culture.

Collaboration and creative delivery

This role is multi-faceted and requires an excellent communicator who is willing to work across teams, departments and at all levels of the University as well as supporting on the management of several key donors. Some key activity will include:
  • Working collaboratively with the fundraisers to account manage the key donors/prospects in their pools through regular meetings and check-ins. Taking time to understand the needs of different fundraising audiences and find synergies across the programme.
  • Managing and developing all major donor recognition circles (Chamberlain and Chancellor's Guild), and working with colleagues to enhance the Rowbotham Fellowship (Legacy) and Leadership Volunteering Circle. This will include creative thinking as well as practical delivery; writing content/template development, event planning/management, briefing speakers and finding impact stories to share.
  • Collaborating with the DARO Communications Team to create, develop and review key pieces of content - both physical and digital such as; impact reports, event videos, stories of impact/celebration on the website/social media, thank you templates and film.
  • Creating, developing, commissioning and delivering specific 'surprise and delight' activities/collateral to build the affinity and enhance the engagement of 6+figure donors.
  • Managing and delivering all aspects of donor recognition, including donor boards, plaques, and digital recognition.
  • Developing and delivering event opportunities in collaboration with the DARO Events Team - such as; dinners, discovery days and tailored visits.
  • Actively collaborating with the Head of Campaign to streamline work, academic liaison, understand priorities and tailor content.
  • Working with the Data and Insight team to develop guest lists, send invitations and reports.
  • Being an ambassador for fundraising and stewardship across DARO and the wider University, building the reputation of the donor community by enhancing the programme's visibility and profile.
  • Building trusted and mutually beneficial relationships with key delivery teams across the University - including Creative Media, Conferences and Events, Stakeholder Engagement and Public Affairs, Outreach, and Careers Network amongst others - for the most effective and impactful delivery of the stewardship and donor experience programme.

Budget management

This role will have responsibility for setting, managing, monitoring and reporting back on an agreed donor experience budget developed as part of a zero-based budget process annually. Working closely with the Associate Director of Fundraising during the budget season and ensuring accurate costing and prudent spending for all activity throughout the year.

Person Specification
  • Previous experience in a relationship management, stewardship, fundraising or in an account management role.
  • Educated to degree level or equivalent qualifications.
  • A demonstrable passion for philanthropy and the difference that donors of time and money can make.
  • A demonstrable insight into why stewardship and donor engagement are critical to fundraising and relationship management.
  • An understanding of the HE sector environment, in particular the threats and opportunities that universities face.
  • Knowledge of the protected characteristics of the Equality Act 2010, and how to actively ensure in day to day activity in own area that those with protected characteristics are treated equally and fairly.
  • Work with integrity and taking personal responsibility for outcomes.
  • Experience of line management.
  • The ability to support colleagues towards their goals and celebrate their success.
  • Experience of budget management, including negotiating, setting and monitoring a budget.
  • Ability to think strategically and deliver policies and strategy documents.
  • Ability to successfully deliver projects through collaborative/matrix working.
  • Experience of building trusted and mutually beneficial relationships with key internal and external stakeholders, including major and principal donors, university leadership, and business and civic leaders.
  • Experience of programme management.
  • Experience of managing complex, competing projects towards successful outcomes.
  • Has a flexible approach to work.
  • Event management experience.
  • Experience of writing for impact across a range of outputs, including reports, briefings, social media posts, webpages, speeches, and articles.
  • Evidence of adapting your approach depending upon your audience.
  • Evidence of strong verbal and written communication skills.
  • Experience of setting, and delivering against a range of KPIs.

Informal enquiries about the role can be made to Victoria Smith -

Valuing excellence, sustaining investment

We value diversity and inclusion at the University of Birmingham and welcome applications from all sections of the community and are open to discussions around all forms of flexible working.


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