This blog was first published by Volunteero on 25 May 2021.
When we first spoke to VODA, the team responsible for their Good Neighbours Project were working from a spreadsheet for which they aptly named “The Spreadsheet of Doom”. The team with help from their volunteers were delivering vital covid response tasks such as food package deliveries, shopping trips, prescriptions and much more. The key problems faced by the team included:
- Organisation – Data was in various locations and data entry took up vast amounts of time
- Task allocation – Each task required drafting emails or calling volunteers until an appropriate volunteer could be found
- Reporting – Tracking activity was problematic and the team spent hours producing reports for managers and funders
- Impact of volunteering- capturing the scale of volunteer time and impact within the local community was impossible to do on a spreadsheet.
In the first three months since working with Volunteero, they have completed over 300 missions and tracked nearly 700 hours of volunteering time. As a result VODA has seen:
- A 75% time saving managing volunteers
- Improved safeguarding and oversight
- Improved volunteer engagement and satisfaction
The spreadsheet was becoming unwieldy. Keeping their data in order was taking up vast amounts of time.
Since using Volunteero, VODA has a centralised record of all of their volunteers containing all of their pertinent information. Volunteers use their app account to update their information at any time, removing the strain of data maintenance. The team could group their volunteers by region and role. All volunteer activity was automatically tracked and recorded, again saving the staff time on repetitive data entry.
“ We can view how many volunteers are using the platform in the account plan and activity pages has proved useful for us to keep on top of volunteer activity”
Make numerous calls until a volunteer agrees to take on a task, then communicate the need via email and follow up regularly for confirmation and then update the spreadsheet. Does this sound familiar? This is the process VODA had to take to get tasks completed.
Volunteero allowed the team to create missions in minutes. These missions could then be published to the relevant volunteer groups or assigned to an individual. The mission would have all the features and information needed to allow volunteers to complete the task; shopping lists, the ability to contact the client from the app, the ability to get directions to the client and then the ability to report back and submit expenses. In most instances the team could then leave it in their volunteers capable hands and track the activity on the dashboard.
“I put a mission on and while normally I would be contacting loads of volunteers, now I move on to the next mission and check every now and then if a volunteer has requested to join the mission”
Reporting is essential with any volunteer program, and with VODA things were no different. This often involved spending countless hours pulling data from various sources manually, calculating and giving the best approximation to management.
Volunteero tracks all volunteer and staff activity and provides real-time insights to staff. Volunteers would submit their volunteering time, report on completion, flag any safeguarding issues or actions and upload expenses. When the time comes to extract the numbers, VODA can just set the time frame, filter by volunteer groups and then see real time metrics.
“Now we can work out how many hours of volunteering has been done either in a single day, week or month using the insights feature.”
An additional benefit for the VODA team was improved volunteer engagement. The feedback from Volunteers was overwhelmingly positive. Below we share just a few of the comments made by volunteers.
“I really like the App. It is easy to use in terms of seeing missions, selecting them a doing a report”
“I am finding things much more straightforward already and I imagine the ability to tick of shopping items will be a god send”
“Good app, easy to use – I like the idea of just checking in to see what’s available, sign off and report back too. Thumbs up”
If you would like to learn how Volunteero can help your volunteering program, please go ahead and book a demo. We would love to hear from you.