Senior Director, Direct Response

Direct Response · Washington, District of Columbia
Department Direct Response
Employment Type Full-Time
Minimum Experience Senior Manager/Supervisor


Managing a team with direct reports, the Senior Director of Direct Response is primarily responsible for ensuring cohesion and integration between all direct response channels and initiatives to best maximize USA for UNHCR’s donor recruitment and retention, revenue and use of internal and external resources – financial and human alike.


The Sr. Director’s mandates are to set strategy for and maximize donor acquisition throughout all channels, while setting, achieving and exceeding benchmarks for donor retention and long-term value, most especially within the monthly donor program. The Sr. Director will foster a culture of collaboration between and across teams and departments. These include direct mail, telemarketing, digital marketing, mid-level donor, sustainers, DRTV, and Face to Face.. The director is also responsible for nurturing meaningful and substantive collaboration with fundraising and development teams, specifically major gifts and community fundraising.


The Sr. Director reports to the Chief Development Officer and works closely with her/him to set fundraising strategies. It is the responsibility of the Sr. Director to implement this strategy, effectively leveraging the talent and skills of other members of the direct response team and external partners/vendors.


Meeting and exceeding revenue targets across all programs is imperative, and the primary responsibility of the Sr. Director of Direct Response. Working with Direct Response leadership, the Sr. Director will craft annual budgets and produce semiannual re-forecasts, and in collaboration with finance, regularly tracking and reporting on performance. Key performance metrics on which the Sr. Director’s performance will be evaluated are revenue, donor counts, retention, value, net per donor and return on investment – by program and channel.


The Sr. Director will work closely with the Chief Development Officer and DR Team on communication strategies, ensuring continuity and optimization of message irrespective of channel and initiative.




• Sets department structure and establishes remits for the DR team, in collaboration with DR leadership, the Chief Development Officer, Human Resources and the Executive office;
• Prioritizes and nurtures genuine integration of message, activities and functions within and across all marketing initiatives and teams, enforcing collaboration best practices;
• In collaboration with Executive, Marketing, Communications and Development/Fundraising teams, oversees the dissemination of messages that reflects USA for UNHCR’s mission, strategic direction and programmatic goals – through its direct response initiatives;
• Ensures data-driven decision-making across channels, calling on skills/resources of HIVE and external partners
• Provides oversight on marketing investments - DRTV, digital marketing, direct mail, telemarketing, face-to-face, upgrades and stewardship;
• Leads and advises on work plans and budgets, ensuring the execution of direct response initiatives with agency partners and internal leadership adheres to U4U strategic objectives;
• Prepares and manages marketing budgets. Monitors revenue and expenditures and prepares variance reports. Accurately identifies and plans operating budgets; anticipates changes that necessitate adjusting forecasts and allocation of funds.
• Provides oversight on the development and implementation of marketing plans, aligned with investments, to meet organizational needs, create desired narratives and generate revenue.
• Managing measurement and reporting of direct response investments with Marketing, Fundraising, Communications and Executive leadership teams;
• Engages with the Fundraising and Communications team to ensure appropriateness of marketing messages;
• Prepares reports and analyzes data, in collaboration with DR Directors, the HIVE and vendor/partners, to illustrate the performance and productivity of marketing initiatives and the return on investments in donor acquisition and sustainer conversion initiatives;
• Develops strategy that furthers USA for UNHCR’s goals and aligns with its vision/mission/values, working collaboratively with directors throughout the organization to ensure alignment of U4U’s Strategic Framework;
• Fosters healthy, professional and direct communication internally and externally
• Ensure the cost-effective and efficient use of external partner resources.


To perform this job successfully, an individual must be able to perform each essential duty satisfactorily. The requirements listed below are representative of the knowledge, skill, and/or ability required. Reasonable accommodations may be made to enable individuals with disabilities to perform the essential functions.



• Should have previous experience of 10+ years in a leadership role, managing a team of 10 or more
• Broad and long experience with digital marketing, direct mail, telemarketing, mid-level, telemarketing, and sustainers programs
• Deep experience in budget and forecasting revenue and expenses of multiple diverse programs
• Advanced excellent analytical, problem solving and communications skills
• Strong understanding of donor stewardship and engagement pathways.
• 10+ years’ experience managing large or complex projects, including budgeting, and directing the work of consultants and vendors.
• Direct experience growing a program based on analysis and testing
• Strong knowledge of data segmentation.
• Familiarity with fundraising databases and Microsoft Office.
• Detailed-oriented and organized.
• Proven ability to manage multiple projects effectively.
• Proven ability to collaborate across divisions to implement processes and achieve results.
• Proven ability to continually develop skills related to use of rapidly changing technology and communications best practices.
• Willingness to work overtime as needed.
• Ability to troubleshoot and problem solve highly complex issues
• Consistently demonstrates professional maturity
• Consistently takes the initiative to accomplish work
• Demonstrates the ability to make sound decisions
• Acts as visionary for the department and the organization
• Ability to motivate and empower employees to perform to the best of their abilities
• Ability to be flexible, collaborative and catalytic
• Consistently demonstrates patience
• Demonstrates passion for USA for UNHCR's mission



The physical demands described here are representative of those that must be met by an employee to successfully perform the essential functions of this job.

• Tasks involve some physical effort, i.e. some standing and walking, or frequent light lifting (5-10 lb.); minimal dexterity in the use of fingers, limbs, or body in the operation of office equipment. Tasks may involve extended periods of time at a keyboard.
• Extended periods of sitting at a workstation or desk and manual dexterity to work efficiently on computer keyboard for data entry and composing of documents



The work environment characteristics described here are representative of those an employee encounters while performing the essential functions of this job. The tasks will generally be performed in a typical office environment. May also involve travel to some locations within the company’s region of operations and select donor locations.



USA for UNHCR will make reasonable accommodations in compliance with the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990.


USA for UNHCR is an Equal Opportunity Employer. Refugees and all other protected classes are encouraged to apply.

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  • Location
    Washington, District of Columbia
  • Department
    Direct Response
  • Employment Type
  • Minimum Experience
    Senior Manager/Supervisor