Guest Relations Specialist, CSU Events and Donor Engagement

Colorado State University
Fort Collins, Colorado, United States
21 Jan 2018
End of advertisement period
18 Feb 2018
Contract Type
Full Time

Description of Work Unit

This is the best time to join Colorado State University. Over the past eight years, CSU has consistently surpassed fundraising records, doubled alumni participation in philanthropy, and closed two of the largest gifts in the university’s history. Soon after exceeding its first campaign goal of $500 million in 2012, CSU embarked on a much more ambitious path: The $1 billion “State Your Purpose – The Campaign for Colorado State University.” To date, CSU has raised more than $760 million, and with three years remaining in the campaign, yet another fundraising record will be set.

Under the leadership of CSU President Tony Frank, campus support for the Division of University Advancement has increased significantly. Faculty engagement in development is at an all-time high and cross-disciplinary fundraising models are emerging across the university. This makes the role and function of University Advancement-Development all the more critical as CSU continues on its path of fundraising excellence.

Division of University Advancement is integral to achieving and sustaining institutional excellence through fundraising and engagement efforts. The Division has one of the leading development teams in the country and places a strong emphasis on professional and personal growth for its employees, including educational opportunities, onboarding and mentoring programs.

Fort Collins is known as “The Choice City” because of its proximity to the beautiful Rocky Mountains, excellent schools, 300+ days of sunshine yearly, thriving arts scene, eclectic shops and restaurants, and miles of walking and biking paths.

The Office of CSU Events & Donor Engagement is comprised of a creative and collaborative team whose mission is “Engage to Inspire a Lifetime of Loyalty.” We work collectively with the University’s colleges and units, as well as the Office of the President, to develop and implement engagement strategy. Producing an average of 250 engagements and events each year, the Office is fast paced and energetic and completes the full spectrum of engagement activities, including event communications, guest relations, budget management and event design and production. We research and follow the latest trend and are constantly looking to provide the best experience for both our campus partners and event participants.

Position Summary

The Guest Relations Specialist develops strategies to manage and continuously improve the donor experience for University colleges, units and the Office of the President to directly influence the results of the fundraising priorities and goals of the University and Advancement.

As an expert in the CRM database used by University Advancement, the GRS offers frequent direction around event communications, event guest relations processes (the registration experience, both on the donor side and from a technical expertise standpoint on the back end), and the ways in which our CRM database can be enhanced, updated and manipulated to improve the guest experience.

The Guest Relations Specialist manages and trains a team of Guest Relations and Event Associates, student workers who are responsible for interacting directly with donors and campus partners as representatives of Advancement and CSU. The Guest Relations Specialist is responsible for ensuring that the students are informed and trained to handle a variety situations that arise in a professional manner.

This position reports to the Director of Advancement Events and Donor Engagement.

Required Job Qualifications

Bachelor’s Degree in Hospitality Management, Business, Marketing, Communications or related field

Three years’ experience in front-line customer service, with progressive responsibilities

Ability to travel and work non-standard hours, including early mornings, evenings, and weekends with a valid driver’s license and reliable transportation or access to a driver

Ability to lift 25 pounds

Preferred Job Qualifications

One year of professional experience in a supervisory role

Previous experience utilizing a CRM database, or similar complex system

Excellent attention to detail, accuracy, and quality in work produced

Demonstrated ability to effectively communicate, both orally and in writing

Strong interpersonal communication skills

Ability to manage stressful work situations

Experience managing an employee training program

Demonstrated experience with and proficiency in data management

Demonstrated ability to work as a member of a team and to thrive in a creative, fast-paced environment

Demonstrated ability to manage multiple projects, prioritize work to maximize
productivity, and respond effectively to change

Success integrating diversity in the major duties outlined in the job description or demonstrated equivalent transferable skills to do so

Proficient in the Microsoft Office environment

Diversity Statement

  • Reflecting departmental and institutional values, candidates are expected to have the ability to advance the Department’s commitment to diversity and inclusion.

Essential Duties

Job Duty Category Constituent and Donor Impact Duty/Responsibility

Develop strategies to manage and continuously improve the donor experience on behalf of the Office of CSU Events and Donor Engagement and client-partners, including the Office of the President and other University colleges and units, in order to directly influence the results of the fundraising priorities and goals. Use knowledge of the CRM database to advise others around generating more effective and accurate communications with donors, both in advance of and onsite during events.

Facilitate relationship building between colleges/units and their constituents by anticipating and responding to guest concerns in a timely and professional manner. Act as an agent of CSU and the college/unit involved when talking with donors.

Identify and resolve a variety of problems in a timely manner. Gathers and analyzes information skillfully, meeting challenges with resourcefulness. Develops alternative approaches and ideas in order to improve efficiency and accuracy. Areas of analysis include post-event giving, payment reconciliation, compiling complicated rosters with multiple tickets types, and reviewing/modifying the unit’s metrics reports.

Manage sensitive constituent information for all events produced by the department. Oversee constituent data quality and completeness; ensure the integrity of all data and event rosters. Make and implement recommendations to continuously improve the overall accuracy of the data.

Design, build and/or amend guest lists within the confidential donor/alumni database (Advance), review lists for accuracy and alignment with strategic engagement goals, and manage guest information for use in communications and event materials.

Percentage Of Time 45 Job Duty Category Supervising and Managing a Team Duty/Responsibility

Independently hire, manage and train a team of student staff, implementing a plan for professional development with a focus on the consistent delivery of world-class service.

Conduct mid-year and annual reviews, motivate and drive performance.

Determine and secure necessary student staffing to assure timely completion of both event and project based work, including projects with high-impact deadlines. The successful management of this task helps ensure consistency of experience for both University donors and campus partners.

Work collaboratively with CSUE & DE leadership team to determine priorities and communicate/coordinate resources in alignment with wider department and University goals.

Develop and maintain a robust Guest Relations training program. Provide ongoing training to students and department staff as needed to support desired outcomes.

Pro-actively manage the Office’s front-line interactions, including coverage of the department’s general email accounts, phone lines and front-desk. Assure the staff and student assistants assigned to these duties are trained to handle inquiries in a professional and timely manner.

Consult and educate colleagues across the division on questions/issues/projects related to the creation and management of event invitation and RSVP lists, and the Events Module of the CRM database.

Serve as a department representative on University committees as assigned, including search committees.

Contribute to the total effectiveness of the department and unit by communicating openly, solving problems proactively, offering creative ideas and working as a positive, engaged team member. Serve as a central source of organization and project management for our office, creating and defining processes that allow us to keep on track and move forward through the high volume of activity taking place.

Percentage Of Time 30 Job Duty Category Systems Management, Analysis and Development Duty/Responsibility

Understand and apply knowledge of the University Advancement donor database (Advance/AWA) in a variety of facets, including analysis of demographic data and event effectiveness as they pertain to fundraising and donor engagement, as well as applicable frontline use of constituent information.

Serve as the resident Advance expert within the department, leading and advising the CSUE & DR staff on the use and capabilities of the system.

Serve as a “Super User” of the Advance database, leading and advising the CSUE & DR staff, as well as others in the Division, on the use and capabilities of the system. Train system users in the EZ Events module and other functionality in the system. Authorize access/rights for users of the system.

Lead a cross-department “Super User” group to determine and prioritize improvements to the system, designed to enhance the guest and user experience. Work with the IT team to test and implement those changes.

Collect and analyze guest satisfaction data and monitor trends in order to cultivate and implement best practices in the overall guest experience.

Percentage Of Time 15 Job Duty Category Budget Management Duty/Responsibility

Create and build the annual Guest Relations labor budget by forecasting hourly labor needs for the operation of the Guest Relations desk, as well as the Guest Relations support needed for events that follow an irregular and variable pattern.

Schedule and manage student hourly labor on an ongoing basis, ensuring that the hours are both satisfying the needs of the Office while meeting the budgetary guidelines set forth. This includes ad hoc adjustment of the schedule on a daily/weekly basis to adapt to fluctuating operational needs.

Accountable for keeping labor costs in line with the annual budget.

Additionally responsible for oversight of an operational budget of $10k. This includes things like supplies, postage, paper, general event materials, etc.

Percentage Of Time 10

Application Details

Special Instructions to Applicants

Applications will be accepted until the position is filled, but for full consideration please apply by 1/28/2018, 11:59 pm with a cover letter addressing the required and preferred qualifications, resume and contact information for 3 professional references.

A $3,000 moving allowance may be negotiated at the time of hire.

References will not be contacted without prior notification of candidates.

Conditions of Employment

Pre-employment Criminal Background Check (required for new hires), Valid Driver’s License, Travel

Search Contact Nicole Franklin

EEO Statement

Colorado State University is committed to providing an environment that is free from discrimination and harassment based on race, age, creed, color, religion, national origin or ancestry, sex, gender, disability, veteran status, genetic information, sexual orientation, gender identity or expression, or pregnancy and will not discharge or in any other manner discriminate against employees or applicants because they have inquired about, discussed, or disclosed their own pay or the pay of another employee or applicant. Colorado State University is an equal opportunity/equal access/affirmative action employer fully committed to achieving a diverse workforce and complies with all Federal and Colorado State laws, regulations, and executive orders regarding non-discrimination and affirmative action. The Office of Equal Opportunity is located in 101 Student Services.

The Title IX Coordinator is the Executive Director of the Office of Support and Safety Assessment, 123 Student Services Building, Fort Collins, CO 80523 -2026, (970) 491-7407.

The Section 504 and ADA Coordinator is the Associate Vice President for Human Capital, Office of Equal Opportunity, 101 Student Services Building, Fort Collins, CO 80523-0160, (970) 491-5836.

Background Check Policy Statement

Colorado State University (CSU) strives to provide a safe study, work, and living environment for its faculty, staff, volunteers and students. To support this environment and comply with applicable laws and regulations, CSU conducts background checks. The type of background check conducted varies by position and can include, but is not limited to, criminal (felony and misdemeanor) history, sex offender registry, motor vehicle history, financial history, and/or education verification. Background checks will be conducted when required by law or contract and when, in the discretion of the university, it is reasonable and prudent to do so.