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Donor Engagement and Retention Specialist

Position: Donor Engagement and Retention Specialist

Salary: GiveWell offers a competitive benefits package benchmarked to the San Francisco Bay Area where we are based. Salary is commensurate with experience.

Location: Oakland, California (preferred).

Timeline: Please submit your application by December 2.

Visas: Please note that for this position we're currently not accepting applications from candidates who need authorization to work in the U.S.

About GiveWell

GiveWell's goal is to identify the giving opportunities which can most cost-effectively improve the lives of the global poor.

GiveWell started as a group of finance professionals trying to do as much good as possible with their personal donations. Since 2007, it has been a full-time independent research group. We publish our charity recommendations, research, and the full details of our analysis publicly at

We think our top charities accomplish a huge amount of good. The charities we recommend work in the area of global health and development and serve some of the poorest people in the world.

Our research has received accolades from Peter Singer (who featured it in his manifesto on giving, The Life You Can Save), Nicholas Kristof (who featured it in Half The Sky), and media including the New York Times, Wall Street Journal, USA Today, CNN and NPR, and many others.

Collectively, GiveWell's donors are some of the largest private donors in international aid. In 2018 (the most recent year for which complete data is available), donors gave a combined $140.9 million in donations to our recommended charities as a direct result of our research. We also directed an additional $15 million in Incubation Grants to support work to strengthen our recommendations in the future.

GiveWell is expanding our team so we can broaden the scope of our research and look for charities that might have even more impact per dollar donated than our current top charities. By joining GiveWell, you will have the opportunity to influence and contribute to our approach and success in directing millions of dollars in funding to highly impactful charities.

Outreach at GiveWell

GiveWell's outreach team engages with current donors and works to acquire new donors to increase the amount of money we direct to our recommended charities. At our recommendation, donors directed $117 million to these charities in 2017. We roughly estimate that, in expectation, these funds prevented 19,000 deaths, dewormed 50 million children, and gave cash to 8,300 poor households.

Over the next few years, GiveWell will invest in our outreach team to significantly increase the amount of money that we direct to our recommended charities. We expect to roughly double the staff we have working on this team as we grow. We’re looking for capable marketers, fundraisers, and communicators to help expand GiveWell’s influence.

The role

As Donor Engagement and Retention Specialist, you are responsible for defining an overall engagement and retention strategy to cultivate deep, meaningful and lasting relationships with donors who give up to $10,000. Blending creative communications with data-driven analysis, you will implement initiatives that reduce churn and increase lifetime donor value.

This is a newly created role and you will be a key architect for our retention and upgrade plans. You will be given latitude to experiment, implement, and iterate, and should therefore be someone who works well in an entrepreneurial environment and has a “get stuff done” attitude. You enjoy identifying and tackling new opportunities and are motivated to reach annual retention and donation goals.

Responsibilities include:

  • You will define and implement a strategy for how GiveWell onboards, stewards, engages, and renews donors contributing up to $10,000.
  • You will become an expert on the donor lifecycle at GiveWell. You will use data to understand their behaviors and giving capacity, and develop strategies to prevent churn and encourage upgrading at key points in their lifecycle.
  • You will create and execute communication campaigns end-to-end. This will include segmenting GiveWell’s donor database, crafting compelling communications for each segment, and designing and building campaigns in GiveWell’s CRM (Salesforce). In the long term this may entail email, direct mail, SMS and social media, though in the short-term we expect email to be the core focus of the role.
  • You will analyze the effectiveness of past campaigns, adapting your strategy based on results.
  • You will develop engagement and renewal goals and track quarterly progress. This will include measuring campaign KPIs, knowing when plans are under-performing, and implementing strategies to course-correct.
  • You will leverage existing donor insights data and create new opportunities to gather data on GiveWell’s donors, such as surveys and split testing.
  • You will build GiveWell’s advocacy program, managing relationships with ambassadors and helping to facilitate peer-solicitation and crowdfunding campaigns.
  • You will identify and research high-capacity donors for targeted upgrade messaging and promotion to major gifts program.
  • You will maintain accurate donor and pipeline information in GiveWell’s CRM.

About you

Ideally, you have all of the following characteristics. Many excellent candidates will have some (but not all) of the characteristics below, and we encourage you to apply even if you do not have all of the below.

To be successful in this role, we expect that you:

  • Have 2 or more years of experience in customer or donor engagement, retention, and/or loyalty. This could be in non-profit annual fund management, or consumer marketing.
  • Love telling stories. You can convert complex research into stories that are clear and engaging, and compel donors to take action.
  • Have a keen eye for detail. You edit, test, and retest to make sure donors receive accurate communications.
  • Are a great project manager. You can successfully manage a project from beginning to end, including the big picture and the minor details. You are a creative and resourceful problem solver who can push ideas from concept to implementation.

Other highly desirable skills, experience, or characteristics:

  • You are excited to build a new program. GiveWell’s engagement and retention program is in a nascent stage. You will have either built or scaled a program before, or have a track record of success in driving up retention and upgrade rates.
  • You are passionate about helping the global poor. GiveWell is currently focused on programs that help people in low- and low-to-middle-income countries. You should be passionate about maximizing the resources we can direct to help the people in these countries.
  • You value honesty and transparency. GiveWell has a strong work culture committed to honesty and transparency about our shortcomings and strengths, as well as those of our recommended charities.
  • You are excited to work in a growing team. GiveWell’s outreach team is small and we expect team members to be nimble and responsive to new opportunities.

To apply

Apply here: We only accept applications through our website.

You may also send additional material, such as a letter of recommendation, to support your application; this is not required. Please send those materials to

We plan to respond to all submissions. Please contact with any questions.

More information

We have thirty-five full- and part-time employees and are located in Oakland.

GiveWell accommodates flexible and remote working. We support and encourage flexible working, including flexible hours, regular work-from-home days, part-time work patterns, and periodic remote-work stints. The majority of our staff, including senior management, work flexibly in one way or another. Our preference is for staff to work from Oakland, but working remotely (including internationally) is also possible.

As part of our dedication to the diversity of our staff, GiveWell is committed to Equal Employment Opportunity without regard for race, color, national origin, ethnicity, gender, protected veteran status, disability, sexual orientation, gender identity, or religion. People of color, people with disabilities, women, and LGBTQ candidates are strongly encouraged to apply.

Pursuant to the San Francisco Fair Chance Ordinance, we will consider for employment qualified applicants with arrest and conviction records.

If you need assistance or an accommodation due to a disability, you may contact us at