Volunteer coordinator an overlooked role at nonprofits

March 21, 2014

Volunteer coordinator an overlooked role at nonprofits

According to Nonprofit Quarterly, many organizations could be losing key volunteers simply because they fail to provide the same type of engagement that would be shown to full-time employees.

However, volunteer retention is not about money and not only about saying thank you. NPQ recommends most nonprofits enlist a volunteer coordinator who has the time and resources to make finding and engaging volunteers a high priority. As with fundraising, organizations should be proactive and not wait until they need help to ask for it.

Building up a volunteer base even when nonprofits don't need the assistance will make it easier to find those willing to donate their time later. Some volunteers can also receive additional training if time is placed between their recruitment and when they are needed. This can help the coordinator elicit and develop inherent skills the volunteer may possess and determine what predisposition they may have toward particular volunteer activities or positions.

Determining who should coordinate volunteers
It's understandable that most nonprofits would not jump with joy at the premise of creating a new position. No matter how useful the person may be, it's hard to justify a new hire when budgets are tight. It is certainly acceptable to appoint the duties of a volunteer coordinator to an existing employee. However, nonprofit leaders must ensure they are not saddling the employee with more than they can effectively manage.

Organizations should choose an employee who has the time and the charisma needed to engage people and ask them to donate their time. This employee should have the time to perform tasks such as sending volunteers personal thank-you cards, birthday cards and Christmas cards. NPQ also explains that a volunteer newsletter is a great way to retain volunteers. Sending out a publication that is all about volunteers – who they are and how they've helped – will illustrate the appreciation that the nonprofit has for this special group of people.

As an organization builds a collection of committed volunteers, it will find projects run more effectively as familiar faces show up time after time. Reducing volunteer onboarding by maintaining a strong relationship with volunteers is essential to running a successful nonprofit.

Content presented by First Nonprofit Group, the leading provider of state unemployment insurance solutions for 501(c)(3) nonprofit employers.

single-post12365

Ready to chat?
Get in touch today to request a no-obligation savings evaluation.

Testimonials

NYCON members who use First Nonprofit’s programs enjoy enduring savings and improved efficiency. Our association knows that success, because from the beginning, we achieved the same great benefits. Great savings, seamless technology, and responsive service. NYCON highly recommends First Nonprofit’s remarkable unemployment solutions.

New York Council of Nonprofits, Albany, NY

It has been our sincere pleasure to maintain a strong, vibrant business partnership with First Nonprofit. We greatly admire their strong industry knowledge, technical expertise, constant professionalism, knowledgeable and dedicated staff. They are always extremely responsive, personable and provide us with the necessary guidance and recommendations on a numerous variety of employment scenarios. We are impressed with the accuracy of their employment decisions, integrity of their employees and efficiency of their claim handling. We greatly respect and value the consistent, impressive cost savings from the utilization of their outstanding services.

 

Thresholds, Chicago, IL

Because INCS advocates for the operating conditions that allow charter public schools to provide high quality public education, partnering with First Nonprofit was an easy decision. First Nonprofit’s unemployment programs provide our member schools two operating elements crucial to their ability to provide high quality public education: savings and budget certainty. Capable, committed teachers are the key to student success. By participating in the unemployment insurance savings plan, charter public schools gain peace of mind and are able to invest more money in their teachers.

Illinois Network of Charter Schools

Throughout our membership in the Unemployment Savings Program, First Nonprofit understood our demands, community dynamics, and the importance of seamless services; that allowed us to serve our constituents better.

Hugh Parry, Retired President of Prevent Blindness America