Top tips for achieving excellence in volunteer management

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Last week we ran our monthly Economic Exchange event on Achieving Excellence in Volunteering, with speakers from Economic Change, Do-it and Investing in Volunteers.

Increasing our clients are looking to increase, improve management and measure the impact of their volunteering due to political, financial and social influences. Charities are competing for volunteers and corporates and individuals are looking for compelling volunteer opportunities.

Do-it shared statistics that on their website alone, there are 1.4 million live volunteering opportunities with 47,000 organisations represented. These opportunities were being shared with 159,000 potential volunteers who had signed up on the site.

With this momentum, there is increasing pressure on organisations to get volunteer management ‘right’, to attract and retain volunteers for the long-term.

Below I’ve summarised the top tips that were shared at the event:

Tips for attracting volunteers

  • Move quickly on expressions of interest and provide adequate information – Do-it undertook a national survey, that showed 36% of potential volunteers experienced barriers to volunteering due to a lack of response to their application or lack of clarity and understanding about the role.
  • Gain an understanding of what the volunteer would like to gain from the experience and what else they may provide to the organisation to ensure you create a positive relationship.
  • Give the volunteer an understanding of how their role contributes towards positive outcomes for the charity, community or beneficiaries.
  • Make your role irresistible – include good pictures to show volunteers in action, provide clear name descriptions and state the beneficial outcomes of role.
  • Mobile Accessibility – Make sure your volunteer opportunities are advertised on a mobile accessible website or device as over 50% now use mobile instead of a computer.

Tips for managing volunteers

  • Get independence guidance to assess and benchmark your processes against best practice indicators set out in the Investing in Volunteers standard.
  • Provide adequate support for your volunteers either through a peer to peer community or access to support advisers to provide knowledge or confidence to achieve their role.
  • Recognise achievements of volunteersg. qualifications gained, no of hours contributed, outstanding achievements, outcomes related etc.
  • Improve efficiency and team co-ordination by investing in a CRM solution such as Salesforce CRM that helps track and manage volunteer information from application through to delivery and outcomes. At Economic Change, we implement Salesforce CRM to help organisations manage their volunteers. Using Salesforce our clients can achieve some or all of the following:
  • Online application forms that sync data into Salesforce CRM.
  • Better co-ordination and tracking of recruitment and induction processes
  • Provide volunteers with access to resources, advisers or a community of peers to gain support.
  • Improved search and matching of volunteers to activities or beneficiaries.
  • Better information collection to track utilisation, recognition and reward of volunteers
  • Improved impact data collection, monitoring and analysis for reporting and communication.

To find out more visit

To book a free consultation on Salesforce CRM, and how it might help you manage your volunteers – contact us at

Tips for measuring impact of volunteers

Demonstrating the value of volunteering is often important to a number of stakeholders, so it’s important to define what you collect, how you collect it, when to analyse it and what to do with the information. The first step is to develop an impact framework that will help you capture a range of information, for example:

  • The diversity, demographics, goals and motivations of volunteers
  • The extent of delivery e.g. hrs and £ in-kind contribution that volunteers provide.
  • The personal, social and economic benefits they gain from the experience.
  • The positive value they contribute for the organisation through their relationship and achievements with beneficiaries
  • The wider contribution of volunteers to the sustainability and growth of your organisation in terms of financial, in-kind and human resources.

To learn more about impact measurement, attend our next Measuring Impact Masterclass –click here.

To learn more about your services volunteer management click here

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