Daily Buzz: What to Consider When Your Volunteer Program Needs a Boost
Attract the right people for each position
Looking to improve your association’s volunteer program? Whether your program is brand-new or well-established, self-evaluation is the key to success, said Your Membership’s Tirrah Switzer.
“Of course, gathering feedback through a volunteer survey will give you insights into what your volunteers want. But it’s also important to take time to ask yourself questions and reflect on your volunteer program,” she said.
For example, make sure descriptions of volunteer opportunities are clear so that you attract the right people for each position. In addition, see if you can offer them multiple levels of commitment.
“Volunteers should be able to choose not only the specific type of opportunity that matches their skill sets, but also the time commitment required. Giving them multiple options to choose from helps ensure they can choose the opportunities that align with their time and expertise,” Switzer said.
Take time to evaluate whether volunteers are getting the proper orientation and training. Does your association offer volunteer onboarding? Volunteers may not be able to fulfill their duties without the right information and a rundown of their responsibilities.
“The more they understand about how your organization and volunteer program work, the more volunteers will be able to contribute,” Switzer said.
It’s also important to make volunteers feel appreciated. “All volunteers should be acknowledged: from members of committees and project teams to task forces and working groups to advisory boards, judges, reviewers, and organizers,” Switzer said.
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