The average number of fundraisers working for arts organisations fell from five to two last year, according to a new report.
It shows that in the financial year 2008/09, the average arts organisation employed two full-time fundraisers, compared with five in 2007/08.
Fundraisers made up only 3 per cent of arts organisations' full-time employees in 2008/09, a figure that has fallen from 10 per cent the previous year, the survey shows.
But the report suggests there has been a trend towards members of staff in other departments being asked to raise funds.
The survey shows 39 per cent of arts fundraisers in 2008/09 were volunteers, compared with 57 per cent the previous year. It says the average fundraiser, whether paid or unpaid, raised £184,000.
The report also says the role of fundraisers in arts organisations is of increasing importance. "With businesses and individuals investing less in culture during the recession, it is vital that the arts have appropriate staff to maintain and build relationships with partners," it says.