Development Research Analyst II

Posted on 10/12/2021

Duke Alumni Engagement & Development

Durham, NC

Occupational Summary:
A variety of duties involving the collection, interpretation, analysis, and documentation of data on prospective donors. Submit reports to leadership and gift officers acros s schools/units/initiatives with strategic recommendations regarding identification, cultivation, solicitation, and stewardship of donors to Duke University. Position reports to the Associate Director of Research in PRMA.

Work Performed:
Prospect Identification, Research, and Analysis

  • Identify new prospects and projects that meet strategic priorities and objectives for annual, planned, major, and principal giving.
  • Responsible for design and upkeep of system for proactive research aligned with portfolio, pipeline, & campaign priorities.
  • Respond to requests from senior leaders and fundraisers in a timely, thoughtful, and complete manner.
  • Demonstrate ability to partner with research requesters to identify specific research needs.
  • Monitor news sources for information on prospective and existing donors & trends in business, higher education, and philanthropy. Distribute news alerts to the appropriate researchers.
  • Maintain, update, and query donor records in the university database; provide system-generated reports for analysis and interpretation.

Interpretation of Data

  • Discover, record, and interpret evidence of philanthropic interests in organizations and evaluate impact.
  • Using hard, soft, and public wealth indicators identify, evaluate, and track highly appreciated assets and estimate donor gift capacity through the analysis of complex individual, corporate, and foundation financial information.
  • Summarize information relevant to the timing of a gift synthesizing large amounts of complex financial data to create a concise and confidential research report in a variety of formats.
  • Train and mentor Research staff on use of research capacity ratings for prospect prioritization and strategy.

Collaboration Leadership & Strategy

  • Independently plan, organize, and coordinate multiple tasks, prioritizing and organizing work to accomplish departmental goals.
  • Build strategic partnerships with development officers across Duke that are positive, mutually respectful, and productive; successfully navigate processes that include responsibility for outcome with peers, managers, and leaders.
  • Work in a collaborative team environment, share knowledge and newly identified sources with Development Research team, and lead group projects that strengthen the pipeline.
  • Always safeguard the confidentiality of donor information. Adhere to ethical and confidentiality guidelines of Duke and APRA.
  • Participate at an appropriate level in professional associations such as APRA and CASE, both to increase knowledge and skills and to foster professional relationships with colleagues outside of Duke.
  • Perform other related duties incidental to the performed work described above.

Strategic Prospect Pool Growth

  • Screening
  • Lead projects to proactively identify, qualify, and quantify segments of the University’s prospect pool through screening and data mining. Bring the most promising opportunities for the University to the attention of appropriate colleagues.
  • Plan, coordinate, and implement a screening plan from conception to achievement of plan goals, working and negotiating timelines with staff, management, and partners (including expectations for database integration, prospect identification, and utilization by Gift Officers).
  • Prepare data for screening, including segmenting data to select records and data clean-up, working with vendors to create data files, segment and prioritize screening results for evaluation. Evaluate and utilize screening results, including data validation, thorough assessment of source validity and the creative use of additional sources, to analyze capacity, inclination, and readiness.


  • Present prospects qualified through screening work to fundraisers to determine appropriate donor- centric strategy. Work with Research and Prospect Management teams on appropriate presentations of data.
  • Foster campus collaborations during strategic group research projects including wealth screenings, officer onboarding, and targeted prospecting.
  • Present research in strategic and relevant ways to help officers determine who to solicit and when and for the right amount. Summarize key findings and create actionable recommendations to appear prominently in profiles, prospect lists and other research products.
  • Determine strategy and next steps for a prospect based on research. Determine what constitutes a good prospect for Duke through analysis, conversations with staff, and knowledge of organizational history
  • Determine fundraising strengths, priorities, and goals, and align research efforts to those priorities and goals.
  • As needed, coordinate, write and prepare briefing and biomaterials for the President of Duke University, and leadership briefing materials for the Dean of the Trinity College of Arts & Sciences, the Dean of the Graduate School, the Dean of Undergraduate Education, and the Provost as assigned.
  • Perform other related duties incidental to the work described herein.

The above statements describe the general nature and level of work being performed by individuals assigned to this classification. This is not intended t o be an exhaustive list of all responsibilities and duties required of personnel so classified.


  • Advanced computer skills and proficiency with industry-standard tools of prospect research including subscription databases (Lexis-Nexis, iWave Pro, Windfall, etc.), free online tools, and other reference resources required.
  • Well-developed interpersonal skills & excellent written & oral communication skills with an aptitude for critical thinking & problem-solving; ability to work well under pressure and maintain flexibility. Ability to support peers and leaders is essential.
  • Ability to learn to navigate unfamiliar information systems and use a variety of computer applications with little guidance.
  • Position requires diplomacy and sensitivity related to institutional prioritization of needs.
  • Skillful problem solving, curiosity, discretion, & continuous attention to detail
  • Excellent analytical skills and ability to interpret and analyze data
  • Behavioral Competencies:
  • Curiosity and Information Seeking
  • Attention to Detail
  • Planning, Prioritizing and Multitasking
  • Collaborating with Others
  • Expresses Ideas Orally and in Writing
  • Shares Knowledge

Minimum Qualifications

Work requires the skills and knowledge normally acquired through the completion of a Bachelor’s degree.

Work generally requires three years of experience in development OR ANY OTHER EQUIVALENT COMBINATION OF RELEVANT EDUCATION AND/OR EXPERIENCE. research or a related field. Work experience in research methodology is required.

Duke is an Affirmative Action/Equal Opportunity Employer committed to providing employment opportunity without regard to an individual’s age, color, disability, gender, gender expression, gender identity, genetic information, national origin, race, religion, sex, sexual orientation, or veteran status.

Duke aspires to create a community built on collaboration, innovation, creativity, and belonging. Our collective success depends on the robust exchange of ideas—an exchange that is best when the rich diversity of our perspectives, backgrounds, and experiences flourishes. To achieve this exchange, it is essential that all members of the community feel secure and welcome, that the contributions of all individuals are respected, and that all voices are heard. All members of our community have a responsibility to uphold these values.

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