This resource highlights ways to increase and improve volunteer recruitment practices in municipal operations, primarily focusing on committees and events.

Other Resources & Use Cases

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Volunteer Recruitment Resources

1. Leverage your municipal website and social media channels to promote volunteer opportunities regularly. Create a dedicated volunteer page with role descriptions and an easy way to sign up.[1]

2. Partner with local community organizations, schools, colleges, and businesses to reach a wider pool of potential volunteers. Attend community fairs and events to raise awareness.[1]

3. Implement a volunteer referral program where current volunteers can earn incentives for referring new volunteers.[2]

4. Reach out to recently retired individuals who may have more free time and relevant skills to contribute.[2]

5. Use online platforms like VolunteerMatch, Idealist, and local volunteer centers to post your opportunities and connect with interested individuals.[1][2]

6. Highlight the benefits of volunteering, such as gaining new skills, networking opportunities, and making a positive impact on the community.

Volunteer Retention Strategies

1. Provide comprehensive training and clear role descriptions to set volunteers up for success from the start.[2]

2. Recognize and appreciate volunteers through formal recognition programs, awards, or small gestures of appreciation.[1][2]

3. Offer a variety of volunteer roles and opportunities to match different interests and schedules.[2]

4. Foster a sense of community and belonging among volunteers through team-building activities and regular communication.[1]

5. Provide opportunities for skill development and growth through training sessions or leadership roles.[2]

6. Conduct exit interviews with departing volunteers to understand their reasons for leaving and identify areas for improvement.[2]

7. Implement a volunteer management system to streamline communication, scheduling, and tracking of volunteer hours and contributions.[2][5]

Volunteer Recruitment Challenges

– Nearly half (46.8%) of nonprofit CEOs reported that recruiting sufficient volunteers was a “big problem” for their organization in 2022, a steep 62% increase compared to 2003.[6][9]

– Recruiting volunteers available during traditional workday hours and finding volunteers with the necessary skills were seen as major challenges by many nonprofits before and after the COVID-19 pandemic.[7]

– In 2022, 38.4% of nonprofits said recruiting volunteers available during workday hours was a “big problem”, and 35.4% said finding skilled volunteers was a “big problem”.[7]

Volunteer Retention Challenges

– High volunteer turnover rates can have far-reaching consequences for nonprofits that rely heavily on volunteers, especially for events and committees that require consistent participation.[10]

– Lack of adequate funds to support volunteer involvement, including training and management, was reported as a “big problem” by 33.3% of nonprofits in 2022.[7]

– Absenteeism, unreliability, or poor work habits of volunteers was cited as a “big problem” by 15.2% of nonprofits in 2022, up from just 4% in 2019 before the pandemic.[7]

Strategies for Improving Recruitment and Retention

– Providing paid time off for volunteering can incentivize employee engagement. 60% of companies offer paid volunteer time off, and 21% plan to implement it by 2024.[8]

– Matching employee volunteer hours with monetary donations to charities (known as “Dollars for Doers” programs) can motivate volunteers. 61% of companies match employee service hours with cash donations.[8]

– Improved communication, more meaningful work opportunities, and building a stronger sense of community within the organization can help with volunteer retention.[10]

Written by : Jason Browne

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