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New State of the Jewish Workplace 2023 Report Shows How Our Sector Was Before 10/7

by Leading Edge

Data from May 2023 has insights on physical security, struggling managers, generational challenges, and more.

Today Leading Edge is releasing a new report: The State of the Jewish Workplace 2023. Based on data from 18,212 employees and 304 CEOs at 327 organizations, this report shares findings about how things were going at work for employees and leaders in Jewish nonprofit organizations in May 2023.  

Since 2016, more than 52,000 employees and more than 400 CEOs at nearly 500 organizations have participated in Leading Edge surveys. This is by far the largest dataset of its kind for the Jewish nonprofit sector. 

This report shares data from before anyone knew how the world would change on October 7th. And yet, we firmly believe this report is still valuable for understanding today’s world and for helping to improve the effectiveness of Jewish nonprofits. Jewish organizations do amazing work, Jewish organizations are under strain, and these findings are a snapshot of the field's workforce and leadership as we entered into this crisis. It also includes a special Physical Security Supplement to show how in-person employees in Jewish organizations (a majority of the employees we surveyed) were feeling about their organizations’ preparedness to face physical security threats, and their own feelings of knowing what to do in that event. 

This “State of the Jewish Workplace” report is a new format for us. In previous years, Leading Edge published two reports sharing separate insights from the Employee Experience Survey and the CEO Survey. This year, we present one unified report, based on both of those surveys and also informed by all the other ways Leading Edge learns about the field. We hope that this new format will make our findings clearer, more accessible, and more relevant. 

Here are some key findings from the report: 

  1. Employees at Jewish nonprofits are overwhelmingly proud of their missions and their work — but could still be more engaged. 
  2. Many Jewish nonprofit employees are new to the sector — and most of them want to stay (both at their organization and in the sector). 
  3. Managers are struggling with systems, resources, and workloads. 
  4. CEOs and employees have divergent perceptions of the board’s impact. 
  5. CEOs and employees are aligned around feeling understaffed. 
  6. Jewish nonprofit boards are strongest in fiscal oversight, supporting CEOs, and responding to a crisis. 
  7. Boards have growth areas around strategic governance, holding themselves accountable, fundraising, and CEO oversight (including succession planning). 
  8. Board chairs are vital. Almost half of Jewish nonprofit board chairs are new to the role—fewer than in the general nonprofit sector. 
  9. Five generations are at work at once, creating challenges and opportunities. 
  10. Inequities persist related to identity. Disparities by race, gender, sexual orientation, disability, and more affect leadership representation and employees’ experience. 

In addition to the findings above, the report includes “deep dives” on diversity, equity, inclusion, & belonging (DEIB), employee engagement, employee retention, and pipelines into the Jewish nonprofit sector for Jewish leaders and employees. 

Download the report at leadingedge.org/ jewishworkplace2023 and share your thoughts on social media using the hashtag #JewishWorkplace

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