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Boston, MA

Who We Are

Root Cause is a purpose-driven consulting group that exists to enable more people to achieve lifelong success. We partner with foundations, nonprofit organizations, businesses, school districts, and public agencies to develop, implement, and measure strategies that improve people’s lives.

Root Cause focuses its work on three service themes: Collective Action; Measurement, Learning & Improvement; and Strategy. We specialize in helping partners reduce disparities based on race, class, gender, and geography so that more people thrive at every age, from a healthy birth, to a quality education, a well-paying job, and healthy and secure aging.

Our Team

Root Cause is made up of passionate, smart, and collaborative people who have a diverse range of experiences, backgrounds, and perspectives. Our consultants are known for an approach that is collaborative, practical, and implementation-focused. Our organizational culture is collegial, entrepreneurial, and flexible. Our small size and the dynamic nature of work – combined with the urgency for action to improve people’s lives – provide many opportunities to learn and grow professionally and to contribute to shaping our strategy, service delivery, and organizational development.

The Role

Our consulting clients are based throughout the United States, and an increasing number of projects are multi-year engagements where we work to advance systemic and sustained impact. We are currently looking to staff projects in the service areas listed above. Most projects involve multiple partners from the corporate, nonprofit, philanthropic, and government sectors. Project teams typically have two to four members, including a lead consultant, a manager, and an associate. Teams may also include additional senior-level consultants with complementary areas of expertise.

Associates contribute to our clients’ success and social impact by playing an active role in all stages of client service delivery – collecting research and performing analysis, developing insights and drafting deliverables, communicating with clients, and keeping Root Cause and client team members on track through effective coordination and project management. Associates are valued team members who actively support the work of their colleagues and have opportunities to own independent areas of work.

Associates typically come to us with 1-2 years of work experience or have had extensive work and/or volunteer experience during college. The fast-paced and entrepreneurial nature of our work creates many opportunities for an associate to learn and grow, positively affect the future direction of our clients, and contribute to the direction and success of Root Cause in meaningful ways. Through their work, associates deepen their expertise in one or more of Root Cause’s services. The small size of our firm also allows associates to set stretch goals and receive increasing responsibility, with the support and guidance of their supervisors.


Given the small size of our team and the diverse nature of our projects, as an Associate, your responsibilities will vary across projects. Responsibilities include:

  • Conduct primary and secondary research (interviews, surveys, focus groups, benchmarking, online searches and review of literature/reports) to understand market trends, data and evidence within a given field, best practices, and client positioning and value proposition
  • Develop survey tools, interview guides, and other tools to frame research, gather data and conduct analyses
  • With oversight, develop and finalize high-quality internal and external deliverables (in Excel, PowerPoint, and Word)
  • Project management, including meeting and event planning and scheduling for multiple projects, synthesis of notes for sharing with clients, follow-up communications, and organization of key project documents
  • Understand and help to develop and manage project work plans and timelines with our online project management tool, Asana. 
  • Participate in internal and external meetings; begin to facilitate parts of internal team meetings
  • Participate in team discussions to frame key research questions, develop relevant insights, make concrete recommendations, and determine next steps
  • Develop productive relationships with project team members and support the development of client relationships
  • With oversight, review and analyze financial data to assess a client’s financial health and inform future strategy
  • Download and clean up survey data, create spreadsheets and perform data analysis
  • Support Root Cause sales/business development through market and prospect research, scope review and/or writing, and other assignments
  • With oversight, take on internal assignments that help to advance Root Cause’s strategy, sales/marketing, organizational development, or operations

What We Are Looking For

1-2 years of professional work experience (ideally in nonprofit, philanthropic, public, education, or business contexts) beyond completion of bachelor’s degree; 2019 graduates with extensive work and/or volunteer experience during college are also encouraged to apply.

  • Demonstrated interest in the social sector and commitment to advancing equity and social justice
    Strong research, analytical, writing, and presentation skills
  • Excellent organizational skills – ability to manage and prioritize multiple projects/tasks with keen attention to detail
  • Experience working collaboratively as part of a team
  • Strong interpersonal skills; experience with multi-stakeholder communications
  • Ability to take initiative and operate with autonomy; flexible and adaptable
  • Strategic thinker and pragmatic doer (ability to understand overall questions and concepts of a client case and translate them to day-to-day work)
  • Strong Microsoft Office skills (Word, PowerPoint, Excel), including experience using Excel for data clean-up and analysis; and/or financial modeling
  • Experience with the project management tool Asana, Salesforce, online survey tools (e.g., SurveyGizmo) and/or statistical analysis programs are a plus
  • Prior experience in consulting or another type of professional services organization a plus

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