An Insider’s Look at the Register of Finance Professionals

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December 05, 2017

An Insider’s Look at the Register of Finance Professionals

By Saskia Hoskins

Recruitment Assistant Humentum

With the merger of InsideNGO, Mango, and LINGOs earlier this year, long-time legacy InsideNGO and LINGOs members, customers, and clients have a new service available to them: expert recruitment of finance specialists, linked to the Register of Finance Professionals, a legacy Mango service for almost two decades. Recruitment Assistant Saskia Hoskins tells us what it is all about and showcases some recent success stories

Having competent and experienced finance staff can vastly improve an NGO’s organisational effectiveness. With nearly 20 years of experience in recruiting for hard-to-fill finance roles for NGOs and other not-for-profit organisations around the world, we’ve become a dab hand at matching qualified finance professionals with NGOs in need. Over the years, we’ve nurtured a Register of Finance Professionals, a network of talented NGO professionals who are our first port of call when we are seeking to fill a role. Many stay on the register throughout their careers, trusting Mango to connect them with assignments that make the most of their talents.

A Register of 900 Finance Specialists

We are approaching a new record of 900 members on the register, all of whom have been through a rigorous application process; each new CV and application form we receive is carefully reviewed by at least two members of the recruitment team. Those who are successful face a detailed competency-based interview before they are accepted onto our register, after a reference check. Aderemi Sotunbo, who we recently placed with the Life and Peace Institute in Sweden, noted that the application process for our register was “tough and thorough, even from the admission process—once you are a register member you know you are worth the onions!” Indeed, our tough admission process makes us confident that our register members are the cream of the crop; we can trust them to perform in their placements, and our clients, in turn, trust us to present them with only quality candidates.

The recruitment team has always prided itself on the relationships that we have developed over the years with our members. Long-time register member Caroline Doan, who has been with us for more than 10 years, described it as a “very close relationship,” explaining how she feels that “we’re friends almost. They’ve found me a number of positions over the years.” These deep relationships enable us to really understand whether a member and a role are a good fit. In our team, it’s not just about filling roles to get the fee at the end; we want to ensure that our members are in a challenging and rewarding role that will further their career, whilst at the same time ensure that our NGO clients have a competent finance professional who will make an impact on their programme.

One of the benefits of maintaining close contact with our members is that we can see how they grow and advance in their careers over time. Member Debbie Lerner was in the earlier stages of her finance career when we placed her with Afripads back in 2016 for her first NGO field assignment. She noted, “Being my first ever placement in the field, as well as a change of sector and continent I was definitely nervous”. However, she took the role in stride, gaining a great deal of valuable experience along the way and thoroughly enjoying the challenge: “I’ve never wanted to get up and go to work more than these past few months.” Debbie has since become a finance manager with another NGO.

Having close relationships with our register members also has other benefits: As many of them have grown in their careers, they often become our recruitment clients. Nick Roberts, one such member turned client, noted how the recruitment team “succeeds in building long-lasting relationships with their members.”

A Global Reach

We’ve been lucky that we’ve been able to place our members in exciting locations around the globe; since the recruitment service has been operating, we’ve placed our members in nearly 80 countries around the world. Long-time register member Peter Last noted that being a register member enabled him to “use [his] experience for the experience of a lifetime” and that being part of the register had “provided him with some amazing opportunities to use [his] skills for the benefit of the less privileged, whilst indulging [his] love of travelling and unfamiliar cultures.”

We recently placed Juliet Rowlands in her first-ever field placement in Zambia with the Frankfurt Zoological Society, and she was delighted to tell us that she now worked in an environment where elephants walk leisurely past her office on a frequent basis. Another member, Cathrine Meda, reflected how she was savouring her new life by the ocean after she relocated to Ghana for her first Mango placement with the Sabre Trust, “I’ve never seen the ocean before, and my son and I rushed to the beach on our first day. It is so refreshing to hear the ocean flowing from where I work.”

Of course, whilst are members are central to our work, it is critical to us that we serve the needs of our NGO clients. We specialise in placing qualified finance professionals in hard-to-fill roles, such as faith-based roles, roles in difficult locations (such as conflict zones), and roles with specific requirements that make it difficult to find the individual with the exact mix of talent and experience. We are also conscious of monitoring our impact, and systematically collect feedback from both our members and our clients to ensure that the members we place are having a positive impact on the NGOs they serve. One happy client remarked how one of our members “took on many of the mundane and onerous tasks that were taking up operational focus from those less able to complete the job and therefore made a great impact,” commenting also how the member “understood the often chaotic nature of the workplace and was sympathetic to needs and requirements.”

You can learn more about our recruitment service or how to become a register member here. We offer a no-placement, no fee register search service, as well as a full executive search service. 

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