Director of Prospect Research, Analytics and Management

Fairfield University is a co-educational, comprehensive Jesuit university with a 200-acre campus located along the scenic shoreline community of Fairfield, CT. The University is comprised of approximately 3,500 undergraduate and 1,200 graduate students pursuing degrees within 5 schools: The College of Arts and Sciences, The Charles F. Dolan School of Business, The School of Engineering, The Marion Peckham Egan School of Nursing and Health Studies, and School of Education and Human Development. As an expression of our Jesuit, Catholic mission and identity, Fairfield embraces a liberal humanistic approach to education, encouraging critical thinking, cultivating free and open inquiry, and fostering ethical and religious values.

Job Description:

Fairfield University is seeking an accomplished, goal-oriented Director of Prospect Research, Analytics and Management to join the University Advancement division and be part of the team that is advancing the University to new heights as a national university. The Director will be an integral member of the Senior Associate Vice President for Advancement’s team and will play an important role in campaign planning activities. The Director will define, implement, and manage the prospect research, analytics and management program and will utilize innovative analytics to maximize the potential of the University's overall prospect pipeline to ensure success of the campaign and all fundraising efforts. Using industry best practices and the newest tools, the Director will develop, implement and streamline business processes, including those related to prospect research, predictive modeling, portfolio management and report development and analysis in alignment with division goals. The Director will lead, develop and manage a staff of two and will work collaboratively with the Senior Director of Advancement Technology & Information Services to ensure the work of both departments is coordinated to maximize prospect and fundraising opportunities.

Job Details:

Delivers strategic leadership for the Prospect Research, Analytics and Management department by providing and articulating a strategic vision and annual plans and goals for all aspects of prospect research, analytics and management, in alignment with the University Advancement’s current and long-range fundraising and campaign goals.

Using industry best practices, plans, implements and manages strategies to identify, rate, assign and track prospects with the capacity to make leadership, major, planned and principal gifts.

On a regular basis, assesses department’s technology needs to ensure the newest and best tools are being utilized to maximize prospect opportunities; evaluates the needs and implement tools and reports for managing fundraiser performance metrics.

Identify, develop and implement plans and processes for utilizing data mining and predictive modeling, and other data analytic tools, to identify new and/or upgrade prospects, including alumni, parents, community members, family foundations and corporations.

Develops and implements proactive strategies for the execution of dynamic wealth and propensity reviews, discovering new major gift pipeline prospects and new sources of funding (corporations, family foundations and community members) for priority initiatives, and ensure timely assignment of newly identified prospects.

Manages and implements an effective prospect management and tracking system, to help ensure prospects are moved in a timely manner and successfully through the fundraising cycle.

Initiates and manages development and analysis of prospect portfolios and provides strategic information on individuals, family foundations, and corporations to development officers and senior leadership.

Develops strong relationship with and provides consultation to Directors of Development and other fundraisers to assemble a comprehensive prospect portfolio and ensure an adequate number of prospects to support fundraising priorities.

Meets regularly with SAVP to discuss progress towards goals and to provide management reports and analyses, to ensure department and division goals are being met. Monitors progress toward division, department and individual fundraising goals to anticipate future prospect needs.

Leads the Prospect Research, Analytics and Management team by utilizing SMART goals for department, staff and self-evaluation, creating work standards and procedures, and developing staff members through coaching and trainings.

Oversee prospect research goals, programs, and policies to ensure fundraising staff have the appropriate prospect information to achieve fundraising objectives.

Effectively manages department’s annual operating budget to ensure resources are leveraged to meet goals.

Performs other work such as assisting in the identification of volunteer leadership prospects; Overseeing the development of research briefs for the president and senior leadership.

Collaborates with the Senior Director of Advancement Technology & Information Services on cross-departmental projects.

Develops and implements policies and standards for donor/prospect research projects

to ensure data collection conforms to ethical principles, confidentiality requirements, FERPA regulations and public information laws.

Participates at an appropriate level in professional associations such as APRA, AHP and/or CASE in order to increase knowledge and skills and stay abreast of industry trends and concerns; trains staff in research methodology and most efficient and economical means to utilize resources.

Serves as the principal authority on prospect research and philanthropic trends.

Other duties as assigned.

EDUCATION: Bachelor’s Degree; Master’s preferred.

EXPERIENCE: A minimum of 7 years of demonstrated experience in prospect research, prospect data analytics, prospect management and managing research efforts.

Minimum of four (4) years' experience in a leading role managing staff of prospect researchers in support of fundraising and alumni relations activities and goals.

Applicable professional experience relating to job duties, preferably in a higher education setting and supporting campaign goals.

Expertise in working with multiple databases and software platforms is essential, including relational databases and data visualization tools

Experience with accountability for information management and data analytics using a large complex database.

KNOWLEDGE AND SKILL NEEDED: Strong understanding of major gift fundraising practices and best practices in prospect research, analytics and management; Exceptional computer proficiency, extensive experience with Blackbaud’s Raiser’s Edge, NXT, ResearchPoint and in various computer software programs, Microsoft Office, PowerBI/Power Pivot and cutting-edge research tools; strategic thinker, strong organizational skills and an orientation toward details/tasks/accuracy; excellent writing, communication and interpersonal skills; team player; ability to evaluate/interpret/synthesize data and develop/fulfill department’s vision.


Advancement - Admin

Performs such other duties, responsibilities, and activities as required by supervisor and as departmental/University needs indicate.


The above information indicates the general nature and level of work performed by employees within this classification. It is not designed to contain and should not be interpreted as a comprehensive inventory of all duties, responsibilities, activities, and/or qualifications required or expected of employees assigned to this job. Duties, responsibilities, and activities may change and new ones may be assigned at any time, with or without notice.

All offers of employment are contingent upon a satisfactory background check.

Fairfield University provides equal employment opportunities to all employees and applicants for employment and prohibits discrimination and harassment of any type without regard to race, color, religion, age, sex, national origin, disability status, genetics, protected veteran status, sexual orientation, gender identity or expression, or any other characteristic protected by federal, state or local laws. This policy applies to all terms and conditions of employment, including recruiting, hiring, placement, promotion, termination, layoff, recall, transfer, leaves of absence, compensation and training.

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