The chief development officer plays an important role in most non-profit companies and organizations related to coordinating volunteers and funding. It is typically a high-ranking executive position. This individual is tasked with the responsibility of seeing to an organization’s development and success. The chief development officer, or CDO, most commonly works under the CEO, or chief executive officer. The CDO also works mainly with the development board.
The work is mostly mental. The chief development officer is responsible for creating short and long term strategies to ensure the organization’s growth and success. The CDO is also responsible for noticing and solving any types of issues that might hamper the organization's growth and success. A CDO also has the duty of overseeing certain internal procedures within the organization to ensure progress. Generally, CDOs work in an office setting for charitable or educational organizations, where computer literacy is a necessity.
A master’s degree in business is typically required for this position. Sometimes, a degree in public policy is also required. A Certified Fundraising Professional certification is usually desired. A minimum of two years of management experience is usually required, with up to ten years of experience in similar organizations. Chief development officers typically work long hours, due to their senior management positions, and they therefore need to have a high work ethic.
Chief Development Officer (CDO) Tasks
Recommend short- and long-range fund development plans and programs that support the organization’s values, mission and objectives.
Participate in short- and long-term strategic and operational planning for the organization.
Ensure that philanthropy and fund development are carried out in keeping with the organization’s values, mission, vision and plans.
Plan, coordinate and assure implementation of strategies to develop donors and contributions in support of the organization.
Maintain accountability and compliance standards for donors and funding sources.