The Circle of Volunteer Satisfaction, Optimizing Your Volunteer Output

Thomas Babbitt
Ashley Clemons
John Larson

The purpose this panel presentation is to better equip Nonprofit organizations (NPOs) with information and tips suggesting increased volunteer participation. The discussion will consist of information regarding volunteer rates, broken down by demographics, tips for increasing relationships between NPO and volunteers, and tools for optimizing the output of each individual in an organization’s volunteer base.

Recruitment: With the introduction of social media, nonprofits have been doing their best to try and utilize online engagement as much as possible. NPOs must learn to engage their audience with compelling content, which includes sharing content that encourages the community to act. The next best way to market to new volunteers and donors is by keeping them informed about up-to-date goals, accomplishments, and needs of your nonprofit. Social media allows nonprofits to interact with their audience in real-time. NPOs must understand the advantage of that interaction by informing their audience about the goals and mission of the NPO.

Retention: Volunteers have a significant role to play in the success of a NPO’s mission, and the better we utilize the volunteer’s skills, the better off the Nonprofit Sector will be. Volunteers who are able to make a more personal connection with a nonprofit, are more likely to feel a genuine bond with the mission, programs and services. This connection encourages the acquisition of knowledge and a wide array of skills, including interpersonal and communication. Concepts highlighted in the Volunteer Management portion of the panel include the significance
of individualism, using social media to engage volunteers, and the importance of purposeful volunteer roles.

Recognition: There are countless ways in which the organizations may benefit from using technology to recognize and show appreciation for their volunteers. Suggestions to the NPOs will include the following: the option for volunteer testimonials to be accessible through the NPO’s website, developing and implementing programs that assign roles for volunteers and recognition accordingly, and personalized follow-up with those who go through with volunteer commitments. It will be emphasized that NPOs need to stress the idea of success to all those who
choose to volunteer and to make a clear connection between achievement and recognition.

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