Charities should use their reserves to hire fundraisers, according to Peter Lewis, chief executive of the Institute of Fundraising.
Lewis was speaking at the launch of Managing in the 'New Normal' – Adapting to Uncertainty, a report on how charities were coping with difficult economic conditions, published annually by the institute, the Charity Finance Group and PwC.
"If you have reserves, there’s no point borrowing money," said Lewis. "On a return-to-cash basis, it might be better to hire fundraisers, who offer a 250 per cent return on your investment."
Lewis said that in a previous job he had successfully started a new service that "barely broke even", but he wondered now whether it would have been better to expand his fundraising department.
The report, published today, shows that 85 per cent of charities are "exploring new fundraising options".