When you’re building your volunteer management program, ensuring that your foundations are in order is critical to the success of your event and/or cause. When it comes to volunteer management, this starts with recruitment. Get this right, and you’ll be on your way to a strong volunteer management program that stands the test of time.
Rosterfy has put together our recommendations to help you implement your very own volunteer recruitment strategy that allows you to recruit the RIGHT volunteers for the RIGHT roles.
Be confident and true to your north star. While volunteers choose to volunteer for various reasons, it is often because they resonate with a particular non for profit and/or event and the work that they are doing within their community. With a clear and honest message that defines your goals and your mission, you put forward a strong voice for your organization, which will help to sell volunteers on why they should choose to volunteer with you.
2. Create a registration form
Ensuring that your registration form is thorough and captures all necessary individual documentation is extremely important. While you don’t want a form that takes hours to complete, make sure that you ask the right questions to ensure that when you come to the screening process, you can determine the right volunteers are recruited. Things to consider including on your registration form include:
- Contact details - i.e first name, last name, email and contact number
- Uniform sizing
- Dietary requirements
- Motivation- learn more about why individuals are keen to volunteer with your organization
- Skills & Certifications - an opportunity to outline key skills and/or certifications that may be relevant to specific roles (i.e Workfing with Children’s Check, First Aid Certificate, ForkLift License)
Ensuring that you offer the registration form online is the easiest way to encourage registrations and collect data efficiently. If you choose to employ a volunteer management solution like Rosterfy, information captured in the registration form can be utilized in conjunction with automations to screen and assign volunteers to roles based on their responses.
3. Create a message and a call to action
Invite individuals within the community to join and support your cause with an open and informative recruitment message, designed to initiate a call to action. Consider the following when putting together your message:
- Is the message reflective of your organization’s north star?
- Have you highlighted how volunteering positively impacts the community?
- Does the message include information about specific requirements (i.e location and/or skillset)?
- Who should this message come from? Should it come from your CEO or possibly even one of your volunteers themselves?
- Do you have a call to action included? This is the ideal time to capitalize on interest and promote volunteer recruitment.
4. Target your recruitment
How many volunteers do you actually require? Do you need to go broad with your recruitment or do you require a small group of volunteers with a specific skill set? This will help to determine where to commence outreach and with whom to.
If you’re looking for ways in which to find volunteers, check out our article on the Top 5 Places to Find Volunteers.
Whether you’re using spreadsheets or a volunteer management system, screening needs to be a considered element of your volunteer recruitment strategy. Ensuring that you have the right volunteers with the right skillset, sets you and your organization up for success. Things to consider include:
- Geographic location - does this match with the location of the roles available?
- Skills - are there specific skills for volunteer roles that mean only select volunteers can fulfil certain roles?
- Background checks - are volunteers required to undergo a background check before volunteering? If yes, consider background check providers including Sterling Volunteers.
- Certifications- are volunteers required to hold certain certifications (i.e Working with Children’s Check) to volunteer at your event?
Screening for the right volunteers ensures that you mitigate risk and ensure the health and wellbeing of the community in which you serve as well as your staff and volunteers.
The decision on whether or not you would like to interview your volunteers is up to you but if you are looking for volunteers with a specific skill set it is definitely worth considering. If you’re using a volunteer management solution, interviews can be coordinated and even facilitated through volunteer portal’s or in person.
While interviews provide a great platform for you to ensure that you are recruiting the right volunteers for the right roles, they also provide an invaluable opportunity to better understand individual motivations, which is important when it comes to engaging and retaining your volunteers. But more on that to come later!
As part of your volunteer recruitment and onboarding, you may wish for your volunteers to undergo some form of training. Training can be an effective way to:
- Training specific to your brand. Ensure volunteers are educated and informed about your organization, non for profit and/or event and its core driver
- Training specific to a location. I.e some events might be held in a venue that requires volunteers to complete an induction
- Training specific to a role. Ensure that you volunteers have the skills and knowledge to fulfil their role at the highest standard
The best way to facilitate training is through a volunteer management solution. Rosterfy has unique and easy to use training modules that can be used in conjunction with automations, triggered by goal based actions.
8. Use Technology
One of the best ways to recruit efficiently is through a volunteer management digital solution. This allows you to recruit, screen, train, communicate and reward your volunteers through one central platform making it simple for both administrators and volunteers.
9. External Recruitment Websites
A great way to advertise opportunities and recruit volunteers is through external recruitment websites or jobs boards.
Read our article on Where to Post Volunteer Opportunities to learn more about where you can promote your volunteer opportunities.
10. Partner with local businesses
Approach local businesses within your community to see whether or not they are interested in volunteering with your organization. Many companies now have in place a corporate social responsibility program that requires their employees to give back to their community through volunteering. Why not partner with them and allow them to help you?
11. Let your volunteers drive recruitment
Your biggest advocates should be your volunteers! The best way to recruit volunteers is through your existing ones. Get your volunteers to help drive recruitment by encouraging them to sign up a friend, family member or colleague.
A great way to do this is by running a fun competition encouraging your current volunteers to bring along a friend to volunteer for a chance to win a prize.
12. Reward and recognize your volunteers
A great way to ensure that you retain your volunteers is through an engaging reward and recognition program, designed to give back to your volunteers. Consider ways in which you can create a unique experience for your volunteers including:
- Personalized thank you certificates
- Communicate milestone achievements including volunteer anniversaries and birthdays
- Pins and/or badges for completing a certain number of volunteers shifts
- Memrobillia and/or prizes for volunteers who meet certain milestones
Rosterfy prides itself on our unique Reward and Recognition offering, allowing clients to better recruit, engage and retain their volunteers.