Last Updated on February 9, 2023 by Tabraiz
Planning, organizing, and managing a volunteer organization can be a daunting task. Whether you are facing the challenges of recruiting, motivating, or retaining volunteers for your organization, there are many things to think about and remember. Many volunteers are working part-time and are juggling many different obligations and responsibilities. While your organization should be appealing, it should ask only a little of your volunteers regarding work hours, volunteer commitment level, and other issues. Here are some tips and tricks on managing a volunteer organization efficiently.
1. Document Everything
Whether you are a new nonprofit or you’ve been in the space for years, there is no substitute for documentation. Manually keeping track of everything by hand is time-consuming, laborious, and leads to siloed information. If your organization is looking to save time, improve synergy between departments and create sweat equity, consider investing in automation software that helps nonprofits such as Habitat for Humanity. These tools include everything from volunteer scheduling, task management, grant tracking, and email marketing. Smart automation will ensure no important information is lost and also help to manage day-to-day business.
2. Keep Track of Your Volunteers
Before you start recruiting volunteers, take the time to find some key volunteers that match your organization’s needs. Reaching out to potential candidates via social media is a good way to spread the word about your organization and its services.
Let your volunteers know if you will be working with them to recruit and manage the volunteers interested in your organization. Being transparent when holding on-site meetings with potential volunteers is a good idea. At the same time, setting up these meetings is important because this could affect a potential volunteer’s availability for future projects.
3. Do Background Checks
When looking for a volunteer, checking their background and verifying the details is important. More than simply asking volunteers if they can work with children or seniors is required. If you want to manage your volunteers effectively, do background checks that will verify the volunteer’s background and qualifications.
4. Keep It Simple
Your organization’s services must be simple enough for volunteers to understand and use them in ways that will maximize their impact. Many organizations have failed in implementing new services because they needed to fully understand what their volunteers could do with these services and how they can help benefit the community around them.
5. Offer Training for Both New and Existing Volunteers
While you want to recruit volunteers to work on your organization’s core issues, they must be informed about its cause and mission. Volunteer managers must take the time to brief volunteers about the organization’s goals and how they can help with these goals. In addition to training, it is also a good idea for volunteers to be trained in the use of new technologies and new software.
6. Make a Clear and Concise Volunteer Job Description
Your nonprofit could have several volunteer jobs available. However, each position should be clearly defined along with its responsibilities and duties. Volunteer jobs should be clearly defined, and the requirements for each volunteer job should be clearly stated. A clear Volunteer Job Description will help volunteers know what is expected of them and help them figure out how to contribute their time to your organization.
7. Reassure Where Necessary
If you manage a volunteer organization, it is important to ensure that your volunteers have sufficient training and know what they are getting into. For example, if you have elderly volunteers who will be visiting seniors in their homes, ensure they receive the training they need to do the job effectively. In some cases, reassurance will be necessary to tell them about the benefits of volunteering and how it translates into helping an organization.
8. Set an Effective Training Schedule
When managing a volunteer organization, providing your volunteers with adequate training on the organization’s goals and the means of achieving them is important. This will help your volunteers become more effective in helping you achieve your goals. Volunteers who receive proper training and understand how to implement it effectively will be more motivated to keep volunteering for the organization.
Managing a volunteer organization is time-consuming and demanding for all involved, including volunteers and managers. The ability to efficiently manage your volunteers will clearly define the quality of your organization. Your objective is to have committed, skilled volunteers with the knowledge to help your organization develop. In addition, an efficient organization will benefit from the skills and contributions of its volunteers.