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Volunteer Management – The Right Way

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What is Volunteer Management? Why is Volunteer Management Important? How to manage Volunteers effectively?

Running a nonprofit organization is not easy. The work requires commitment, passion, determination, and drive. If you’re serious about it, nonprofit work can be taxing, exhausting, and draining.

Nonprofit work doesn’t only include helping other people or championing causes. It requires operational skills, good leadership, and efficient communication skills. Not to mention you also need to be able to manage volunteers effectively.

What is Volunteer Management

Volunteer Management is a strategic process of managing volunteer resources where you recruit, engage, and coordinate volunteers within your nonprofit organization. You need to manage the volunteers as well as the work they do for your organization.

This process requires exceptional management skills because you’ll be dealing with people from all walks of life who have different backgrounds. Unlike in a corporate setting where the employees tend to have similar business backgrounds, volunteers can come in from anywhere.

Why is Volunteer Management important?

A proper Volunteer Management plan can help your nonprofit organizations in many ways. Since many nonprofits rely on volunteers, having an efficient Volunteer Management plan in place can help to speed up many processes within your organization.

Volunteer Management is important because not only you’re managing the resources to the needs and requirements of your organization, but you’re also managing the volunteers. This is an important process because you will need to keep your volunteers excited and engaged in the work they do. Through this, you can make sure they’re useful and helpful to your organization.

4 benefits of Management Engagement strategy

Engagement is highly important in a nonprofit organization. Without engagement, the passion and drive that bring your volunteers to you in the first place can fade. You need to ensure that’s always engaged and excited about the work you’re doing.

Running a nonprofit organization takes a lot of passion and drive. If you’re not excited and driven to make the changes you want to see, how can you expect others to follow in your footsteps? This is why Management Engagement is important.

Just like in a business setting, employees will feel undervalued and unappreciated if there is no engagement from the management. They will as though they’re just robots who work. This is similar in a nonprofit organization.

Volunteers need to feel appreciated for the work they do. Even though many volunteers volunteer their effort, time, and energy to nonprofit organizations out of the kindness of their hearts, they still need to be acknowledged by the management.

Efficient Management Engagement can increase the retention rate among volunteers. The volunteers feel appreciated, so they enjoy what they do for your nonprofit organization. When they enjoy the work they do, the chances of them leaving is low.

As important as it is to retain volunteers, it’s also equally important to recruit new ones. Since volunteers are not bound by any contract or employment terms with your organization, they’re free to come and go. You’ll always be in need of volunteers because even the most passionate volunteer may not always be available to volunteer during your events.

When your nonprofit organization is well-known for its excellent Management Engagement, people will be more open to joining you because they know they will not be treated poorly. This way, the chances of you getting new volunteer faces are higher.

Volunteering takes passion and drive. Many volunteers find personal satisfaction through their contributions. With higher and more genuine Management Engagement, volunteers can gain greater volunteer satisfaction. This contributes to their dedication, commitment, and willingness to stay with your organization.

Relationship is the backbone of many nonprofit organizations. With more organizational involvement, volunteers will feel appreciated and valued. Many volunteers continue to work with an organization for a long time because of the quality of relationship they build and can get from the organization as well as its people.

How to do Volunteer Management Effectively?

Volunteer Management works like any business management. Other than having necessary hard skills, it also requires goals and objectives. List what you expect from your volunteers and decide how to achieve these goals.

You may not have a one-plan-fits-all for your Volunteer Management, but it’s still wise to have tangible goals that make sense for your organization and the types of volunteers you have. These goals don’t need to be extravagant or fancy. As long as they’re tangible and viable, you can start to effectively manage your volunteers.

Make full use of technology because it can help your organization in a big way. Again, your website or system doesn’t have to be highly advanced. Just make sure your volunteers are able to easily find information, register, or make enquiries on your platform.

Not only that, you can also use technology to make your process and operations more seamless. There are several Volunteer Management software that you can use to make your work easier. At a minimal cost, these systems or software will help you to conduct Volunteer Management much more efficiently and professionally.

Since the number of volunteers you have can always change, you should also focus on encouraging non-volunteers to become volunteers. Non-volunteers can be people who’ve donated to your organization before or people who follow your organization’s social media.

You can send letters or emails of encouragement to your donors to welcome them to volunteer. You can also share photos of other volunteers at work and clearly display their rewarding experience to encourage non-volunteers to participate.

Showing how your volunteers and their work impact your organization or how much people enjoy volunteering can be a powerful motivation for others to join. Be casual yet persuasive with your words, so you’re able to attract more non-volunteers to become volunteers.

Another way to have effective Volunteer Management is to focus and streamline your recruitment process. Remember, volunteers come to you because they’re willing to pitch in. So, while you need enough data to create volunteer profiles, you can’t force them to go through a lengthy recruitment process.

Other than personal details, you can ask your volunteers to list their skills, interest, and professional backgrounds. Not only you’ll be able to designate them work that suits and matches their skills and backgrounds, you can use this data for your organization more comprehensively whenever the need arises.

Finally, while volunteers don’t usually seek glory, it’s still a good idea to regularly incorporate recognition and rewards in your Volunteer Management plan. Your volunteers will feel valued and appreciated and indirectly, they’d want to continue to stay with you.

Building a volunteer community to nurture relationships

A strong volunteer community brings a lot of benefits to the society. A group of kind people who are passionate about helping others can make significant and impactful changes. Your nonprofit can help build a dedicated volunteer community to nurture positive relationships among everyone within the community.


Many people who manage nonprofits need to start somewhere. While it takes competent skills to do Volunteer Management right, it’s not something impossible. You already have the passion to drive your nonprofit, so all you have to do is hone your skills.

The more you explore the many ways you can manage your volunteers, the more experience you’ll gain. Not only you will gain valuable experience, but you’re also building lifelong positive relationships with other passionate people.

What is Volunteer Management?

Volunteer Management is a strategic process of managing volunteer resources where you recruit, engage, and coordinate volunteers within your nonprofit organization. You need to manage the volunteers as well as the work they do for your organization. Learn more at Circle Acts

About the author

Brian Chan

Brian Chan is the co-founder of Circle Acts Charity. Circle Acts is a registered charity that focuses on high-impact philanthropy and promote donor philanthropy across the world.