The Professional Fundraiser
3.5 out of 5 stars.
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Good ethos and values but, difficult to implement due to the nature of paid fundraisers (very money driven which impacts their behaviour and relationships in the business) Also company grew too quickly and did not take onboard advice from fundraisers re charities we should work with. Massively impacted by the pandemic.

Pros

Tried to implement strong values

Cons

Working with paid fundraisers
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Official response from The Professional Fundraiser

22 October 2021
Thank you for your objective review, and for your time and support with the company, not least during the Coronavirus pandemic when we were unable to trade for a combined period of 8 months. I do however feel that we have started to turn a corner now, especially with the return of shows/events in England, and the on-boarding of additional fundraisers, and some new and amazing charity partners. We certainly experienced exponential growth in 2019, and some charity campaigns were slower than first anticipated but are however performing well now, and teething issues with any new campaign is to be expected. The growth in 2019 however powered our ability to invest in our technology, culture and to build our reserves, which has since aided the long-term retention of many of our team during what has been a challenging time for so many individuals, and at a time when so many across the world have re-evaluated their lives and professions. It is simply sad that the pandemic and the unfortunate timing, took away the opportunity for us to build on this evolvement of our business. Our type of fundraising is very closely related to that of a face-to-face sales environment, and as such successful fundraisers need to be target driven, and both incentivised and rewarded for the results and income they generate. It is sad that some behaviours when it comes to engagement with others in the organisation are not as professional as we would like, however these issues are tackled appropriately, and its the reality that self-employed fundraisers who work remotely will never buy-in to the company's - 

Not what I had hoped for

Things started ok (the selection process and week 1), things quickly went downhill, company has potential it seems but selfish leaders seem to be holding it back. Industry reputation is not what it used to be.
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Insights into The Professional Fundraiser

Based on 3 survey responses
What people like
  • Ability to meet personal goals
  • Clear sense of purpose
Areas for improvement
  • Trust in colleagues
  • General feeling of work happiness
  • Energising work tasks

Difficult place to work, no cohesion between fundraisers and office staff

Started well, very approachable and responsive and went down hill from there.Management became elusive and didn't respond to calls/emails,Fundraiser commissions were continually changed and not for the better.Venue finders were rude on occasion and pressured fundraisers into taking poor quality venues.Overall a poor experience.

Cons

Poor venue finding staff, elusive management.
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Official response from The Professional Fundraiser

19 April 2022
Thank you for taking the time to leave a review following your experience working with The Professional Fundraiser.I was pleased to read that your time with us started well and you found the team to be both approachable and responsive, but was disappointed to read that this was not your overall experience of working with us. If management were elusive and failed to respond to your calls and emails, I can only apologise, this is not how our leadership team likes to operate, and I would be pleased if you could email me direct with details of your experience - kelvin.hopkins@theprofessionalfundraiser.co.uk. I was surprised to read though that you found members of our fundraising operations/site acquisition team to be rude on occasion - this is not my experience working alongside them on a daily basis, but again, I would pleased if you could email me direct with further details so I can investigate. I am also confused by your comment about fundraiser commission continually changing as this is not the case. We temporarily reduced commission rates for a period of 12 weeks following the first lock-down in June/July of 2021, increasing this to pre-COVID levels, and other than this one change, and since then commission rates have remain unchanged. KELVIN HOPKINSManaging Director

Giving 1 star is generous

Utterly furious and disappointed.Always excuses doesn't pay salaries and money owed. Other more genuine Fundraiser agencies out there. Wish their messages and posts could actually be true.

Cons

Doesnt pay you
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Official response from The Professional Fundraiser

22 September 2021
While always open to honest feedback, and for the benefit of potential candidates seeking to work with us, I feel compelled to put the record straight on this occasion. Never in the last 10 years have we not paid salaries - specifically, and having been informed by your line manager that this review had been left, it's worth highlighting that you were a fundraiser with our company, and not a member of our Central Administration Team in Stotfold; and when you are talking about salaries you are talking specifically about bond payments. For the benefit of those reading, we make a deduction against payment for future donor cancellations, and after a period of time we reconcile the amount deducted against the true value of the cancellations and pay the difference to the fundraiser, if the value of cancellations is less. You did not receive any bond balance because what you misunderstood is that the reconciliation works 6-months in arrears, as it takes up to this length of time for the initial donations to go through and for cancellations to appear. Bonds repaid on the 9th July 2021 were for the quarter until the 27th December 2020, and you were not working with us at that time. We are however holding a bond from you, for the quarter until the 27th June, which you thought would be repaid on the 9th July, but will not be reconciled against true cancellations until 7th January 2022, as per the pay date calendar in your contract for services, and as explained to you by your line manager, and confirmed by our Head of Fundraising. Please be assured that on the 7th January, any - 

Stay well clear

TPF was a good company a while back. Then they started employing one manager after another paying them extremely high salaries. Many venues were poor, making it difficult to earn good money. Bonus structure turned out to be bogus, still waiting for payment. When cashflow was low only managers got paid on time. You cannot trust this company, they are going downhill quickly.

Pros

None now, they used to be good

Cons

Don't expect to get paid
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Official response from The Professional Fundraiser

24 September 2021
Aware of who has left this review and knowledgeable that you worked together with the individual that left the review the day after, on the 24th August, it is clear that you are both of the same misunderstanding, and have together sought to leave potentially damaging reviews that do not provide an accurate reflection of circumstances, along with further exaggerations that have no grounding, in an attempt to add weight to a flawed argument. Personally, your review is incredibly disappointing given your previous years of service with The Professional Fundraiser, and the continued support we provided to you during difficult times. To answer the points in your review, and to set the record straight:1. We have a total of three field managers currently, all of which were in employed during the 3-4 year period that you were not working with the company, and their remuneration is competitive for the sector. I should stress as well that during the Coronavirus crisis all management have worked on flexible furlough for a period of time thereby not gaining their full salary, and as such you have no basis for making any of the claims regarding managerial headcount and excessive pay that you have. What you have stated is pure conjecture, it is not accurate, and it is not fair for those on furlough who like many have suffered financially during the pandemic.2. With respect to the quality of fundraising venues, it should be noted that you are based and work in Scotland, and that your most recent time with us was during the Coronavirus crisis, where restrictions in Scotland were significantly - 

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Absolutely amazing company!

I enjoyed every day at tpf. Such a wonderful company with an inspirational MD who lives and breathes the company values. Great work life balance. I felt incredibly valued. I would recommend this wonderful company to anyone who is fortunate to receive an opportunity to join. Thank you to everyone at tpf for a wonderful, enjoyable experience. Very best of luck.

Pros

Great values, positive friendly teams.

Cons

No cons, absolutely loved it.
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Official response from The Professional Fundraiser

11 September 2020
Thank you so much for leaving such a glowing testimonial of our organisation, especially given that your role was one that was sadly selected for redundancy due to COVID, and prior to you leaving this review. As much as we aim to be an amazing organisation, we are only as good as the people we employ, and we are exceedingly fortunate to have an outstanding, talented and friendly team. While COVID has brought a temporary stop to our business, and has forced us into making some incredibly difficult decisions that we would not have otherwise needed to make, we look forward to the day when we can thrive again, and hopefully welcome back many of the individuals we have so unfortunately lost during this time. With my best wishes.Kelvin. Managing Director.

So far so good

Good company , makes a change from where I come from. Good information given from venues! Equipment was good condition. Here's to the future at The Professional fundraiser
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Official response from The Professional Fundraiser

31 March 2020
Thank you for leaving your review, and despite the best efforts of COVID-19 The Professional Fundraiser still has a bright future ahead of us. I am pleased that your first impressions of the company have been good - we pride ourselves on providing an exceptional level of service and professionalism, coupled with friendliness and personality. I welcome you to the team, and while we're not operational at the time of writing due to the social distancing measures imposed, I hope that you will continue to work with us past this unprecedented period. KELVIN HOPKINSManaging Director

Really excited to start my journey here

I recently completed my training and wow what can I say, huge change in environment, I'm so exited for my journey with the professional fundraiser!! Nearly everyone I have met is so lovely the admin team were great and so are the venue bookers! Training was good, Shame about the grumpy trainer but maybe she was having a bad day?! If you are thinking about working here DO IT! One happy fundraiser
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Official response from The Professional Fundraiser

31 March 2020
Thank you for your review, it's great to hear from yet another 'Happy Fundraiser' on the team. Of course, and at the time of writing, COVID-19 has taken hold across the UK, however we hope to be back in full swing as early as possible, while continuing to respect any future precautions that may be necessary to help protect public health. It's great for me to learn of your excitement, and the team here at Church Farm will be very grateful of your comments - they're a great team, who constantly go out of their way to offer the best support to those out in the field. Of course, everyone does have bad days, and things going on outside of work - but our supportive culture is important in recognising individual times of stress, and being tolerant of this. We are 'all about our people', and hope to continue to have a great team throughout the company, all positive and helpful towards one another. KELVIN HOPKINSManaging Director

Very accommodating, will readily reapply

I wouldn't usually review a business where I was unsuccessful but given the fact joe the recruitment manager was so accommodating, calling me after 8PM to suit my schedule even to give me bad news was so extremely refreshing and welcomed, most places just send you an email or ignore you! Thank you
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Official response from The Professional Fundraiser

7 February 2020
Thank you for taking the time to leave a review; I am disappointed to learn that you have been unsuccessful on this occasion. It is nonetheless great to hear your positive feedback about Joe. As a business we always aim to provide the most professional standards together with an engaging experience for everyone, and in everything we do - for our clients, our charity supporters, our team, and those seeking to work with us and looking to become a part of our journey. I am sorry we were unable to provide you with a suitable role, however I wish you well for the future and hope you find a position that is both fulfilling and enjoyable, and potentially one in the highly rewarding charity sector. Kelvin. Managing Director.

Really lovely business

From my initial contact through to my offer the process has been enjoyable and such a modern vibe in the office and I'm just exited to get the opportunity to be a part of this!
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Official response from The Professional Fundraiser

1 February 2020
Thank you for your kind comments. Our mission is to ‘offer a fresh approach’ and two of our values are ‘personable and friendly’ and ‘all about our people’ - I’m pleased that you’ve experienced this during the recruitment process, and we’re equally as excited that you’ve chosen to join us, and be a part of our journey. Kelvin. Managing Director

Company has further potential but needs to keep to its value

Upon commencment of my time with The Professional fundraiser, I have had a great welcome from my senior Manager and the other departments, notably IT. However the one huge disappointment is the rude training manager who is openly disregarding to everyone below her, sticks out like a sore thumb. That being said it is still a company I would recommend.
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Official response from The Professional Fundraiser

22 January 2020
Thank you for leaving a review, I am pleased from your initial comment and from the overall score that you feel the company is committed and has the further potential to be a top employer for our team. Your comment though regarding a member of our training team is disappointing to read, and we would certainly not expect any team member to be unapproachable, least of all a trainer and mentor in our business. I would like to thank you for leaving your review and making me aware of your experience with TPF. I would also like to encourage you to speak further and openly with any senior manager in our business about your concerns, either on this topic or regarding any others that may arise in the future, so that all such issues can be suitably addressed. KELVIN HOPKINSManaging Director

Awful

Management is shocking, they don't look after their staff and offer unrealistic targets. Low salary for the job your doing and have awful venues which is extremely important with this type of job. We would turn up at venues when they weren't even expecting us and we would waste our day driving an hour to get to these places. I got 2 days of training in an office however none a actually out on the streets. W
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Official response from The Professional Fundraiser

22 December 2019
I was shocked and disappointed to read your review, and if there were failings on our side and if in particular you did fail to receive the required amount of training and support during your time with us, I would be grateful for the opportunity to discuss this with you. You can email me personally: kelvin.hopkins@theprofessionalfundraiser.co.uk.On face value however I would disagree with the comments you have made, to the point of questioning the authenticity of this review. To begin, our fundraiser inductions are four days and not two, I am exceedingly puzzled why you have not been accurate on this point, and in response to your comment about looking after our team, we would have provided you with accommodation, an evening meal allowance, and would have refunded all travel expenses for your time when training with us. After your induction, you should have been supported in the field by either a Regional Training Partner or an experienced Fundraiser. While any lack or delay in providing field support is unacceptable, I struggle to believe that one of our training partners failed to meet and accompany you at any point during your first two weeks? I would be keen to learn what field training you did receive, and how we could have supported you further. In response to your comment about low salary it is important to recognise that all fundraisers work on a self-employed and not salaried basis, with average earnings of £35k per year, and some in excess of £50k, with accommodation, parking and mileage all fully reimbursed.I do agree that venues play a hugely important - 

Fantastic company to work for.

The Professional Fundraiser is a fantastic place to work, relaxed environment, great work colleagues, gorgeous offices on a beautiful farm in Astwick. Management are very approachable and always present, no hiding away in an office! In fact it is hard to know who is management they blend in so well!! The MD is one of the most thoughtful bosses I have ever had, arranging office outings, providing refreshments everyday for his staff, to name but a few! Not only is all of the above a major plus, most importantly we are helping to raise a vast amount of money for our wonderful charity clients!
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Official response from The Professional Fundraiser

10 December 2019
Thank you very much for your review, it's pleasing for me to know how much you love and enjoy coming to work, and I hope the same is true for everyone on our team. Creating an engaging workplace culture is extremely important to me personally, and is an area that I take a lot of pride in when we get it right. To achieve what we do at Church Farm is one thing, however it's equally important to me that this same culture and human focus is followed through to all our fundraisers working remotely across the UK, and importantly translates and helps to make a great donor experience, for as you say our wonderful charity clients. Kelvin. Managing Director.

Growing company

Working for TPF is an enjoyable job most says. I have met some nice people. You can ask any of the management team anything, they are not at all standoffish. I enjoy my job.
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Official response from The Professional Fundraiser

10 December 2019
Thank you for your review below. The recruitment team certainly work hard to not only attract and select talented individuals, but equally those people that are a great fit for our company and our culture. While working at TPF is enjoyable for you 'most' days, we naturally want this to be every day. I hope that the recent additions of both an immediate line manager in Ben, and a senior team manager in Danny have been positive additions to the team, and have provided you and others with the support you require, and enable you to love coming to work, and to have the tools and opportunity to perform at your best. Kelvin. Managing Director.

Fun workplace

It’s a great place to work with friendly staff members. The company treat me well and I enjoy going to work every day. The company is very productive so we are constantly achieving goals.
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Official response from The Professional Fundraiser

11 July 2019
Thank you for your review. I am pleased that you find TPF a great place to work. We really are all about our people, and will continue to strive to create a great culture and working environment for everyone.Kelvin.Managing Director

Great place to work

The interview process is seemless, staff morale is allways great the office is lovely and the MD is very nice. Overall amazing plack to work. very glad I joined
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Official response from The Professional Fundraiser

4 July 2019
Thank you for your review, and welcome to the team. I'm pleased you like the office... and myself!... and hope you have an amazing time working with us for years to come! Kelvin.Managing Director.

Welcoming and strive for success

As soon as I walked into the building I immediately felt so relaxed and felt the warmth from the people working. The hospitality I was shown on arrival was outstanding and the nerves went away rather quickly. Can’t wait to start at the professional fundraiser and help them achieve great things.

Pros

Location and employees
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Official response from The Professional Fundraiser

4 July 2019
Thank you for your review, we have a great team here at Church Farm and I'm pleased that you were made to feel so welcome when you arrived. Congratulations on the job offer and we look forward to having you start with us soon. Kelvin.Managing Director.

A company that cares

So welcoming from the get go. Great recruitment and training was exemplary! All the venue planners are understanding and help you out so much, so glad I made the move and dont regret it one bit!

Pros

Pay and venues

Cons

Have to work multiole campaigns at times
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Official response from The Professional Fundraiser

4 July 2019
Thank you for your review and comments about the recruitment process and training. We aim to be best in sector with what is now a 4-day residential induction, so I'm delighted to read that you found this exemplary. I will pass your comments back to both Joe and Liz in recruitment and training, and also the campaign/venue team in the office who will be very appreciative of the acknowledgement of their hard work and effort. Kelvin. Managing Director.

Visions of grandeur

Initially a small family run highly respected gundraising agency with good standardss. However, the influx of new senior management has transformed their credo to a desire to become an industry giant. Unfortunately their overly ambitious approach has turned the company culture to a dictatorial enterprise ruling by expediency any a scant regard for integrity or promises made and broken. All resources are channelled to a few 'stars' with others bing forced to promote low yielding charities at over exploited venues. In short many are leaving and have paid a high price by way of non existent high earnings. BEWARE GREEKS BEARING GIFTS 0!00!00

Pros

High commissions if you sell

Cons

Promises, Promises, Promises
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Official response from The Professional Fundraiser

4 July 2019
I was disappointed to read your comments, and while saddened that you feel let down by us, I do disagree with some of the comments you have made. The only addition to our management team is that of a single Relationship and Development Manager, a role aimed at providing greater support to fundraisers, and a key decision maker that you can immediately go-to in light of any issues or concerns. As you commented, we are an agency with high standards, and the result of this has been the on boarding of two new charity clients this year, that has led to the growth of our business and the number of fundraisers we are working with. Our values and focus on quality however are still the beating heart of our business, and we would never aim to compromise the quality of what we do. I think it is unfair to refer to some of our charity clients as low yielding - it is true that some campaigns perform better than others however many fundraisers have worked on these 'low yielding' campaigns for a number of years, without complaint, and with good earning potential. We are a business all about our people, and not the numbers - a 'star' for us is someone that shares in our company values and behaviours, with good feedback and low cancellations. That said, we do not favour any fundraiser over another, and aim to ensure that all fundraisers are given equal earning opportunities. I am sorry that TPF was not the right fundraising agency for you.Kelvin.Managing Director

Good place to work

Personalised roles to suit skills Early Friday finish Can be very busy at times MD is very active which is good Nice comfortable offices Good training offer

Pros

Md

Cons

Hours
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Official response from The Professional Fundraiser

4 July 2019
Thank you for your review, I'm pleased that you like the offices, and feel that the training we offer is of good quality and value. This year has been extraordinarily busy with the on boarding of new clients and fundraisers, and we hope that the larger infrastructure we now have in the place in the office will help to make the workload more manageable in the future.

Great, fun place to work

A growing family run business that is disrupting its industry! Visible progression and a clear management structure. Well rewarded and culture is exactly what I was looking for

Pros

Culture

Cons

Could do with private health care
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Official response from The Professional Fundraiser

4 July 2019
Thank you for the review, I'm pleased that you feel rewarded and recognised for your contribution. We do review our benefits package from time-to-time, and additional benefits is something we could look to include as the company continues to grow and develop. KelvinManaging Director

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Overall rating

Based on 23 reviews

Ratings by category

3.8 out of 5 stars for Work/Life Balance
3.4 out of 5 stars for Salary/Benefits
3.3 out of 5 stars for Job security/advancement
3.5 out of 5 stars for Management
3.6 out of 5 stars for Culture

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