Research and Evaluation Manager

Job Type

Full Time




333 S. Wabash Avenue
Suite 2800
United States


The Organization


IFF is a mission-driven lender, real estate consultant, and developer that helps communities thrive by creating opportunities for low-income communities and people with disabilities. Key to our success has been a deep sense of purpose, a broad perspective, and a relentless focus on achieving positive results. Social return can coincide with financial return.

Across the Midwest, we help clients from every sector, including human service agencies, health centers, schools, housing developers, and grocery stores. Our staff of nearly 100 professionals works from our Chicago headquarters, and we also serve the Midwest from six regional offices: Indianapolis, IN; Detroit, MI; Kansas City, MO; St. Louis, MO; Columbus, OH; and Milwaukee, WI.

IFF is a Community Development Financial Institution (CDFI) certified by the U.S. Department of the Treasury. We are the largest nonprofit CDFI in the Midwest and one of only a few nationally to earn the AERIS five-star, triple-A, policy-plus rating. Since 1988, we have made more than $700 million in loans, leveraged $2.3 billion in community investments, and grown our total managed assets to $606 million.

Basic Job Function


The Research and Evaluation Manager leads projects that support data-informed strategic planning and decision making. The Research and Evaluation Manager will work independently and as a member of a team to plan and execute research and evaluation projects, including collecting, compiling, validating, and analyzing data; and designing and producing charts, graphs, briefs, presentations, and reports that describe and interpret findings. The Research and Evaluation Manager will be committed to delivering high-impact and actionable research and evaluation that informs, guides, and influences practice and policy with innovation, enthusiasm, flexibility, thoughtfulness, and a sense of humor.


Job Duties and Responsibilities:

  • Plans and implements all phases of research and evaluation projects, including design, quantitative and qualitative data collection and analysis, and reporting.

  • Manages complex stakeholder relationships. Collaborates effectively with internal and external partners to plan, implement, report, and activate recommendations from research and evaluation projects.

  • Presents findings visually, orally and in writing, as appropriate, and contributes visual and written materials to reports, publications and proposals. Designs and produces charts and graphs that describe and interpret findings, and efficiently and effectively reveal spatial and statistical relationships. Develops briefs, presentations, and reports that describe and interpret findings and provide actionable insights.

  • Responds to ad-hoc research- and evaluation-related queries.

  • Participates on staff inter-departmental teams to complete multi-disciplinary research and evaluation projects that provide insights and solutions for internal and external clients.

  • Develops and completes annual professional development plan, in consultation with supervisor.

  • Attends and participates in required educational programs and staff meetings.

  • Carries out other related tasks, requests, and duties as assigned.

Performance Measures:


  1. Successful completion of projects and project support according to budget, timeframe and goals set forth at the beginning of each project and department’s policies and procedures.
  2. Research and evaluation products consistently high-quality. Written drafts, outlines, analyses, visualizations, tools, reports and oral presentations are complete, accurate, comprehensive and clear. Appropriate supporting material and visual aids are well-utilized and enhance oral and written presentation. Written and oral presentations are well-organized, persuasive and communicate actionable insight(s).
  3. Relationship-management and communication with internal and external clients is client-centered. It is focused on informing and guiding high-impact and actionable outcomes. Clear and consistent communication with clients and colleagues on progress of project. High level of colleague and client satisfaction with respect to services and analytics provided; and reports, tools and visualizations produced.
  4. Engagement with clients, colleagues, sectors and professional development embodies value of life-long learning. Consistent focus on high-impact, actionable research. Innovates to support clients and IFF as learning organizations.
  5.  Cultivates a culture of openness in information sharing. Encourages open communication, cooperation, and the sharing of knowledge.
  6.  Models personal accountability that promotes ownership and engagement.
  7.  Builds and maintains effective working relationships with colleagues, peers and team members.
  8.  Values and supports differences in others, contributing to an inclusive work environment. Demonstrates the ability and willingness to communicate effectively with people of diverse backgrounds and experiences to create a collaborative, collegial, and caring community.
  9.  High level of satisfaction with both internal colleagues and external contacts.



Position Qualifications:


Education: Bachelor’s Degree required. Advanced Degree in urban planning, public policy, community development, economics or a social science strongly preferred.


Previous Experience:  At least five years relevant experience in an economic or community development, public policy, nonprofit or think-tank position required.

Special Knowledge & Skills:

  • Passion for IFF’s mission. Knowledge of, or experience in, nonprofits, community development and issues facing low-income communities is essential.

  • Proven research and evaluation experience and expert knowledge of quantitative and qualitative research methods. Track record of undertaking and/or commissioning research and evaluation that has informed practice/policy development.


  •  Familiarity with major issues in the fields of housing, early childhood care and education, K-12 education, community development, food access, social and human services, and healthcare, with specialized knowledge in one or more areas.


  •  Demonstrated ability to analyze quantitative and qualitative data, interpret findings, discern implications, draw conclusions, and make recommendations.


  • Demonstrated proficiency in statistical analysis software, including ability to write complex syntax, and Microsoft Office suite required.

  • Advanced critical thinking skills, exhibited by the ability to synthesize and summarize complex information from a range of sources in an accessible way.


  • Ability to translate technical data into messages and graphic representations meaningful to a broad audience. Effective and confident communicator (both verbal and in writing) with individuals at all levels, with the credibility to advise and challenge senior stakeholders.


  • Good relational skills (including with people from a diverse range of backgrounds) and ability to work collaboratively as part of a team. Personable and able to influence others whilst maintaining supportive, collegial relationships.


Unusual Requirements: Minimal regional travel required. Occasional evening and weekend work.

IFF values equity, diversity and inclusion as part of its mission to strengthen nonprofits and the communities they serve. IFF is an equal opportunity employer.




Careers at IFF

Come to work every day knowing you are making our world a better place. We seek resourceful, passionate, and community-minded individuals who want to combine business skills with social impact and contribute to our mission with some of the best in the field. IFF is an Equal Opportunity Employer.

IFF also offers a great benefits package including:

  • Medical plans (PPO, HMO, and HSA options)
  • Dental plans (PPO)
  • Vision discount program
  • Pretax medical, transportation, and dependable care flexible spending accounts
  • Generous vacation and sick time
  • 401K plan with 5% employer contribution after one year of employment
  • Employer-paid life and AD&D coverage
  • Employer-paid short-term and long-term disability coverage

Other perks include:

  • Professional development
  • Flexible work schedule policy
  • Summer Fridays policy

If you are looking for a rewarding and challenging career, join us.

Professional Level


Minimum Education Required

4-year degree

How To Apply

Application Instructions: Applicants are required to submit a cover letter, resume and salary requirements to with “Research and Evaluation Manager” in the subject line. Kindly include examples of your work.