Volunteerism can make a significant impact on your nonprofit, and it’s the reason why hundreds of other groups use volunteers.
Did you know?
- The average volunteer time is worth $24.
- Last year, volunteers provided $184 billion worth of their time to charity.
- Many nonprofits operate entirely using volunteers.
When you recruit volunteers, you’re engaging people to get a first-hand and personal look at the work you do for your cause. Volunteerism provides prospective supporters and donors in your community to get actively involved and experience the great work that you’re doing.
If you’d like to create a volunteer program for your charity, there are a few tips you can use to make sure you’re successful.
- Tip #1: Manageable Goals
When you’re looking to create a volunteer program, think about developing manageable goals. Consider your vision, goals and organizational values and devise a way to communicate them concisely to not only your staff but also the people you will be recruiting as your volunteers.
Additionally, as you prepare your recruitment materials, think about how you will effectively convey how your volunteer program will serve the community, what the goals will be for your volunteers, and the impact that they will make. People want to know that they’re part of something that has been thought through and will provide them an opportunity to make a difference. Who will your volunteers be helping? How long will their assistance be needed? How will their impact be measured?
- Tip #2: Develop an Organized Volunteer Database
If you’re a small nonprofit organization, get an Excel sheet together to gather the critical information for your volunteers. Some of that critical information includes their names, addresses, telephone numbers, what volunteers are doing and when they will be available to do it. Remember, you also want to keep track of the hours your volunteers provide as a service to your nonprofit.
If you have the resources to invest in a CRM, you should, because it will make your volunteer program more effective. You will increase engagement, keep things coordinated and integrate the information with your donor information, which will only increase the chances that your volunteers will become donors and ongoing supporters.
- Tip #3: Recruit a Volunteer Coordinator
It’s essential to recruit someone who will be accountable and responsible for creating your volunteer program. Take a look at the people you have within your organization and see if someone can be tasked to put in a certain amount of hours, each week, to develop and implement a program.
However, if you don’t have anyone on staff that can be a volunteer coordinator, then think about getting an enthusiastic supporter to your program. Whoever is selected, make sure that this person is personable, motivated and passionate about your nonprofit organization and the work that it does within the community. Remember, that enthusiasm will be infectious!
- Tip #4: Streamline the Volunteer Process
People have short attention spans, and they expect ease when they are joining a nonprofit, be it because they are donating or volunteering. Make it a point to have an easy process for people to go through to volunteer. For instance, you can set up a survey on your website for people who are interested in volunteering. Make sure it’s quick, easy and user-friendly.
If you want to vet your prospective volunteers further, then schedule a conversation and get to know the reasons why they want to get involved with your group, learn about their skills and where they can have the most significant impact both for your organization and also for them and their skills within your volunteer program.
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