It can be a challenge to find stupendous volunteers for your philanthropy. There are lots of people out there who want to donate their time to an organization, but far too many of them are only doing it to put on their resumes or meet a requirement for something. You want to find the best volunteers for your organization, which means you need to put a little extra effort into locating them. While you do not want to be too picky when it comes to volunteers (most charities need the free help in order to continue running and further their causes), you should be slightly selective in choosing volunteers and what tasks you assign them.
Ask for a resume
First off, most volunteer opportunities ask for basic information on their volunteers. Usually, volunteers have to fill out a short application, but receiving a resume could be more beneficial. It’ll save both parties time because it gets rid of the need to fill out a separate application, and it lets you see if the applicant has any former volunteer experience or seems to have a good work ethic. While a sparse resume isn’t a reason to count someone out, it can help you identify great volunteers.
Conduct an interview process
Some philanthropies just don’t have time for this step, but if you do, it should be something you prioritize. Just taking a few minutes the first day someone volunteers, you’ll be able to get a better idea of who they are as a person. Ask why they wanted to volunteer with your charity in the first place and what they’re hoping to get from the experience.
Determine what they can handle
Before assigning tasks to volunteers, ask them what experience they have and what they’d like to work on. You could also have new volunteers try out different tasks and see what they excel at the most. The longer volunteers are with you and the more adept they show themselves to be, the bigger tasks you can trust them with at your philanthropy.
Match them with a mentor
If your organization has been around for a few years, you can match new volunteers with those who are more experienced. Giving new volunteers a mentor provides them with a chance to get thorough training and it also helps you gauge what kind of volunteer they are. If you choose to conduct a mentorship program with your volunteers, make sure you aren’t giving seasoned volunteers too much to do and preventing them from helping the organization.
Give back to them
When you finally do find fantastic volunteers, make sure you keep them happy. Provide them with a meaningful experience and offer to be a reference when they look for a job or apply for something. You might also want to consider giving your loyal volunteers some kind of gift around the holidays or just make it a point to recognize those who are doing a great job.