Check out our free development director job description template.

 

When it comes to managing something as valuable as your major gifts, your nonprofit undoubtedly needs the best and brightest candidate for the job.

That’s why it’s imperative for your major gift officer job description to be clear, structured and attention-grabbing to make sure your nonprofit only interviews the top percentage of prime applicants.

For starters, while crafting your job posting, it’s important that the most critical information is immediately clear. A branded header or image can help your posting stand out to applicants and convey your nonprofit’s culture, all while directing them to vital information.

The official job title, your nonprofit name and logo and the application deadline are just some of the items your nonprofit should highlight at the beginning of your job posting.

Now that we’ve got your attention, follow along with us for more executive search strategies as we cover the essential elements of an expert major gift officer job description:

  1. The major gift officer job description template.
  2. Key responsibilities for a major gift officer.
  3. Major gift officer job requirements.
  4. Where to promote your major gift officer job posting.

Let’s move forward with how to construct a polished major gift officer job description.

Model your major gift officer job description after our expert template.

Major Gift Officer Job Description Template

Crafting the perfect major gift officer job description can be a little daunting. For a concise and effective approach, try modeling your nonprofit’s major gift officer job posting after this professional example.

Remember to use this opportunity for showcasing your nonprofit’s passion. Also, feel free to swap out specific details related to your nonprofit’s background and need for a major gift officer. 

Major Gift Officer for Indiana Children’s Healthcare Foundation

The Indiana Children’s Healthcare Foundation seeks a skilled major gift officer to join our team in achieving our major gift fundraising and planned giving program objectives. Reporting to the executive director and development officer, the major gift officer will be responsible for identifying and cultivating relationships with prospective major gift donors and planned giving donors.

This involves prospect research and developing effective solicitation strategies as well as stewarding donors throughout the major giving process. The major gift officer will compile this information in a donor portfolio and emphasize gifts of $100,000 or greater.

This individual will also work with our board members and staff leaders to coordinate and execute long-term fundraising initiatives. Our ideal candidate will have an undergraduate degree and at least five years of major gift/planned giving experience, preferably in the medical field or nonprofits.

They will also have a thorough background in fundraising best practices and donor databases for managing donor and solicitation records. Applications will be accepted through August 1 and early submissions are encouraged.

Please send application materials (resume, cover letter, references and salary requirements) to carter@indianachildrenshealthcare.com.

This job description example is clear and focused in addressing your nonprofit’s expectations for a major gift officer and how the role will directly impact the nonprofit’s growth and development.

If your nonprofit still has trouble creating a major gift officer job description, never forget that you can always turn to an experienced nonprofit executive search firm for help. For a list of top recommendations, check out Double the Donation’s definitive ranking!

Be aware of your major gift officer's top priorities.

Major Gift Officer Key Responsibilities

As one of the crucial leaders at any nonprofit, chances are that your major gift officer will be required to perform a range of duties to keep your fundraising and major giving programs successful.

The size of your nonprofit is also a key factor to consider when developing a major gift officer role in order to determine how many people you’ll need to run your major giving operations.

That being said, these core responsibilities are often at the heart of the nonprofit major gift officer role:

  • Planning and leading your major giving program.
  • Researching major gift donor prospects.
  • Growing relationships with major gift donors.
  • Developing a donor solicitation strategy for major gift prospects.
  • Designing and operating a donor stewardship program.
  • Tracking and assessing major gift fundraising metrics.

In addition to detailing ongoing duties in your job posting your nonprofit should also note more specific tasks and daily routines your major gift officer will be responsible for such as:

  • Calling and emailing major gift donors on a regular basis.
  • Determining what donation amounts qualify as a major gift.
  • Drafting major gift proposal documents.
  • Using major giving fundraising and marketing tools.
  • Working collaboratively with board members and staff on fundraising.

Above all, it’s important to take into account the day-to-day assignments as well as bigger picture responsibilities while crafting your major gift officer job description. 

Set key standards for your major gift officer job applicants.

Major Gift Officer Job Requirements

This section of your major gift officer job description should essentially contain the meat of the job posting. In particular, you’ll want to address the education and experience requirements for the major gift officer role, as well as touch on preferred fundraising technology skills.

Follow along with us as we break down each of these necessary elements.

1. Education and Experience Level

The role of a major gift officer is a serious undertaking at any organization. That’s why it should only be entrusted to proven leaders with the appropriate fundraising and donor stewardship experience.

In terms of schooling, your major gift officer should have a bachelor’s degree at minimum with additional fundraising certificates or degrees as an optional bonus.

However, when it comes to hiring a major gift officer, their amount of hands-on experience should be your organization’s top priority. 

One way to gauge your applicants’ major gift experience is to encourage them to share fundraising initiatives they’ve worked on and challenges they overcame in their cover letter or other application materials. By emphasizing the level of experience your ideal major gift officer should have, your job description will better prepare candidates for position expectations and potential interviews.

Learn more about how a fundraising consultant can help you define your fundraising goals for a major gift officer with Aly Sterling Philanthropy’s expert guide.

2. Fundraising Technology Skills

In addition to education and experience requirements, your job description should also highlight the preferred fundraising technology skills you’re looking for in a major gift officer.

You see, a huge part of the major gift officer job requires using specific fundraising tools to help manage your major giving operations more efficiently, including:

  • Prospect research tools: Your major gift officer can save time on narrowing down prospective donors by applying an online screening system to your donor database.
  • Major gift calculator: This tool can help your major gift officer visually analyze how many gifts your organization needs in various giving levels to achieve your fundraising goals.
  • Marketing materials: By designing a series of templates for required donation materials, your major gift officer can move the solicitation process along with tailored templates to every major gift prospect.
  • Donor database software: Your major gift officer can better manage important donor data in the major giving process with a firm understanding of donor database software.

By outlining these technological skills in your job post, your nonprofit can track down more qualified major gift officer candidates for this tech-savvy role.

Use nonprofit job boards and letters to find the right fit for your major gift officer job opening.

Where to Post the Major Gift Officer Job Description

Once you’ve crafted the perfect major gift officer job description for your organization’s needs, it’s time to effectively broadcast your executive job opening.

Luckily, there are a variety of top nonprofit job boards for your organization to choose from in order to attract the best candidates for the position. Many of these job boards cater exclusively to nonprofits as well as target specific locations and offer several pricing packages.

Along with your online job board post, your organization should also feature a downloadable resource with additional information related to the major gift officer position. These supplementary resources are perfect for your applicants to print, reference and keep on file. Take a look at this example:

Reference our real-life example of a professional major gift officer job description.

In addition, a few job description downloadable resource details may include:

  • Your organization’s backstory, mission and vision.
  • Information about your organization’s location.
  • Statistics about your organization’s fundraising and growth.
  • Major gift officer salary/compensation and benefits package.
  • Visual branding for your organization (images and social media icons).
  • Employer contact information and application instructions.

If your team already has a few major gift officer contenders in mind, your organization can always partner with an executive search consultant to draft a nonprofit job description letter.

This job description alternative does an excellent job of providing key information to get candidates excited about applying for your open position.

Whether you prefer the public advantage of a nonprofit job board or the personal touch of a job description letter, these job description methods will connect you with prime major gift officer applicants in no time.


Hiring a major gift officer is a professional victory like no other because it means your organization is advancing to the next stage in your development.

No matter if you’re creating a brand new position or growing your existing major giving team, our thorough job description guide will help your organization achieve peace of mind in hiring the right major gift officer for you.

For more information on nonprofit executive search, check out these handy resources:

  1. How to Write a Development Director Job Description: 4 Key Tips — Discover our best practices for attracting exemplary candidates with your development director job description.
  2. Top 4 Executive Search Locations for Your Midwest Nonprofit — Learn more about our regional executive search services to help your local nonprofit recruit a killer staff.
  3. 4 Tips for Writing Your Executive Director Job Description — Track down your next executive director with these top tips and free job description template from DonorSearch.
Check out our development director job description template for free!

 

When it comes to managing something as valuable as your major gifts, your nonprofit undoubtedly needs the best and brightest candidate for the job.

That’s why it’s imperative for your major gift officer job description to be clear, structured and attention-grabbing to make sure your nonprofit only interviews the top percentage of prime applicants.

For starters, while crafting your job description, it’s important that the most critical information is immediately clear. A branded header or image can help your posting stand out to applicants and convey your nonprofit’s culture, all while directing them to vital information.

The official job title, your nonprofit name and logo and the application deadline are just some of the items your nonprofit should highlight at the beginning of your job posting.

Now that we’ve got your attention, follow along with us for more executive search strategies as we cover the essential elements of an expert major gift officer job description:

  1. The major gift officer job description template.
  2. Key responsibilities for a major gift officer.
  3. Major gift officer job requirements.
  4. Where to promote your major gift officer job posting.

Let’s move forward with how to construct a polished major gift officer job description.

Major Gift Officer Job Description Template

Crafting the perfect major gift officer job description can be a little daunting. For a concise and effective approach, try modeling your nonprofit’s major gift officer job posting after this professional example.

Remember to use this opportunity for showcasing your nonprofit’s passion. Also, feel free to swap out specific details related to your nonprofit’s background and need for a major gift officer. 

Major Gift Officer for Indiana Children’s Healthcare Foundation

The Indiana Children’s Healthcare Foundation seeks a skilled major gift officer to join our team in achieving our major gift fundraising and planned giving program objectives. Reporting to the executive director and development officer, the major gift officer will be responsible for identifying and cultivating relationships with prospective major gift donors and planned giving donors. This involves prospect research and developing effective solicitation strategies as well as stewarding donors throughout the major giving process. The major gift officer will compile this information in a donor portfolio and emphasize gifts of $100,000 or greater. This individual will also work with our board members and staff leaders to coordinate and execute long-term fundraising initiatives. Our ideal candidate will have an undergraduate degree and at least five years of major gift/planned giving experience, preferably in the medical field or nonprofits. They will also have a thorough background in fundraising best practices and donor databases for managing donor and solicitation records. Applications will be accepted through August 1 and early submissions are encouraged. Please send application materials (resume, cover letter, references and salary requirements) to carter@indianachildrenshealthcare.com.

This job description example is clear and focused in addressing your nonprofit’s expectations for a major gift officer and how the role will directly impact the nonprofit’s growth and development.

If your nonprofit still has trouble creating a major gift officer job description, never forget that you can always turn to an experienced nonprofit executive search firm for help. For a list of top recommendations, check out Double the Donation’s definitive ranking!

Major Gift Officer Key Responsibilities

As one of the crucial leaders at any nonprofit, chances are that your major gift officer will be required to perform a range of duties to keep your fundraising and major giving programs successful.

The size of your nonprofit is also a key factor to consider when developing a major gift officer role in order to determine how many people you’ll need to run your major giving operations.

That being said, these core responsibilities are often at the heart of the nonprofit major gift officer role:

  • Planning and leading your major giving program.
  • Researching major gift donor prospects.
  • Growing relationships with major gift donors.
  • Developing a donor solicitation strategy for major gift prospects.
  • Designing and operating a donor stewardship program.
  • Tracking and assessing major gift fundraising metrics.

In addition to detailing ongoing duties in your job description, your nonprofit should also note more specific tasks and daily routines your major gift officer will be responsible for such as:

  • Calling and emailing major gift donors on a regular basis.
  • Determining what donation amounts qualify as a major gift.
  • Drafting major gift proposal documents.
  • Using major giving fundraising and marketing tools.
  • Working collaboratively with board members and staff on fundraising.

Above all, it’s important to take into account the day-to-day assignments as well as bigger picture responsibilities while crafting your major gift officer job description. 

Major Gift Officer Job Requirements

This section of your major gift officer job description should essentially contain the meat of the job posting. In particular, you’ll want to address the education and experience requirements for the major gift officer role, as well as touch on preferred fundraising technology skills.

Follow along with us as we break down each of these necessary elements.

1. Education and Experience Level

The role of a major gift officer is a serious undertaking at any organization. That’s why it should only be entrusted to proven leaders with the appropriate fundraising and donor stewardship experience.

In terms of schooling, your major gift officer should have a bachelor’s degree at minimum with additional fundraising certificates or degrees as an optional bonus.

However, when it comes to hiring a major gift officer, their amount of hands-on experience should be your organization’s top priority. 

One way to gauge your applicants’ major gift experience is to encourage them to share fundraising initiatives they’ve worked on and challenges they overcame in their cover letter or other application materials. By emphasizing the level of experience your ideal major gift officer should have, your job posting will better prepare candidates for position expectations and potential interviews.

Learn more about how a fundraising consultant can help you define your fundraising needs and goals for your major gift officer with Aly Sterling Philanthropy’s expert guide.

2. Fundraising Technology Skills

In addition to education and experience requirements, your job posting should also highlight the preferred fundraising technology skills you’re looking for in a major gift officer.

You see, a huge part of the major gift officer job requires using specific fundraising tools to help manage your major giving operations more efficiently, including:

  • Prospect research tools: Your major gift officer can save time on narrowing down prospective donors by applying an online screening system to your donor database.
  • Major gift calculator: This tool can help your major gift officer visually analyze how many gifts your organization needs in various giving levels to achieve your fundraising goals.
  • Marketing materials: By designing a series of templates for required donation materials, your major gift officer can move the solicitation process along with tailored templates to every major gift prospect.
  • Donor database software: Your major gift officer can better manage important donor data in the major giving process with a firm understanding of donor database software.

By outlining these technological skills in your job description, your nonprofit can track down more qualified major gift officer candidates for this tech-savvy role.

Where to Post the Major Gift Officer Job Description

Once you’ve crafted the perfect major gift officer job description for your organization’s needs, it’s time to effectively broadcast your executive job opening.

Luckily, there are a variety of top nonprofit job boards for your organization to choose from in order to attract the best candidates for the position. Many of these job boards cater exclusively to nonprofits as well as target specific locations and offer several pricing packages.

Along with your online job board post, your organization should also feature a downloadable resource with additional information related to the major gift officer position. These supplementary resources are perfect for your applicants to print, reference and keep on file.

In addition, a few job description downloadable resource details may include:

  • Your organization’s backstory, mission and vision.
  • Information about your organization’s location.
  • Statistics about your organization’s fundraising and growth.
  • Major gift officer salary/compensation and benefits package.
  • Visual branding for your organization (images and social media icons).
  • Employer contact information and application instructions.

If you already have a few major gift officer contenders in mind, your organization can always partner with an executive search consultant to draft a nonprofit job description letter.

This job description alternative does an excellent job of providing key information to get candidates excited about applying for your open position.

Whether you prefer the public advantage of a nonprofit job board or the personal touch of a job description letter, these job posting methods will connect you with prime major gift officer applicants in no time.


Hiring a major gift officer is a professional victory like no other because it means your organization is advancing to the next stage in your development.

No matter if you’re creating a brand new position or growing your existing major giving team, our thorough job description guide will help your organization achieve peace of mind in hiring the right major gift officer for you.

For more information on nonprofit executive search, check out these handy resources:

  1. How to Write a Development Director Job Description: 4 Key Tips — Discover our best practices for attracting exemplary candidates with your development director job description.
  2. Top 4 Executive Search Locations for Your Midwest Nonprofit — Learn more about our regional executive search services to help your local nonprofit recruit a killer staff.
  3. 4 Tips for Writing Your Executive Director Job Description — Track down your next executive director with these top tips and free job description template from DonorSearch.

Aly Sterling Philanthropy

Aly Sterling Philanthropy

Over the years we’ve helped nonprofits raise millions of dollars, engage their leaders, hire top-notch talent and grow their missions. Are you ready to move your mission forward? Contact us to get started.
Aly Sterling Philanthropy

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