We were introduced to Catalyst Stockton by another client of Volunteero. At the time most of the organisation and communication with volunteers was being managed by spreadsheets, emails and phone calls. The team had some exciting and impactful projects in the pipeline but the main question facing them was how would they launch them and support these new programs without having to grow their volunteer management team.
In order to effectively increase its capacity, Catalyst had a few key problems to overcome:
- Onboarding of new volunteers
- Matching and oversight
- Reporting and safeguarding
During the months of December 2021 and January 2022, the team saved an estimated 210 hours across a team of 3 volunteering staff. This cost-saving equates to around a 13x ROI for Catalyst Stockton.
Using the forms and submissions feature in Volunteero, the team could begin to accept digital volunteer applications into the platform and manage them in a more organised fashion. This reduced the average time from volunteer application to them being approved from 3 weeks to under 2 weeks.
Volunteero forms can be embedded on your organisation's website or a link can be shared. This means if you are acquiring new volunteers via any other channel, the registration form can be shared there also.
“Sending and receiving volunteer application forms is much quicker and easier. Being able to paste the link to the form onto our volunteer recruitment website is a real timesaver and results in many people completing the form prior to our first contact with them”
By streamlining the onboarding process, staff have to spend less time onboarding more volunteers. In doing so Volunteero can help increase your overall volunteering capacity.
Management and oversight
Tasks/opportunities in Volunteero are called missions, these can be totally tailored to the types of things your volunteers do for you. These can then be shared in relevant volunteer groups and the volunteers can be proactive and pick up missions that best suit them.
One of the mission types Catalyst volunteers would undertake is called check-in calls. This is where a volunteer would make a call to a client to see how they are and uncover any other needs that Catalyst or other services in the community could help them with. A volunteer would be matched up with different clients each week. The matching of these took time every week and the reporting for volunteers was manual and cumbersome.
Using Volunteero, the mission could be set up once for each client and after a call was made a volunteer could leave the mission to free it up for another volunteer the following week.
“For check-in phone calls we would previously prepare a Word document and email as an attachment each time a volunteer was going to make calls. All of the reports being embedded in the App makes this process a lot quicker.”
It is simple to check real-time activity on Volunteero and see where calls or tasks are not being completed. Furthermore, Volunteero allows you to set up scheduled notifications which will check for inactivity on missions and give the volunteer a friendly reminder.
“Checking whether volunteers have completed their tasks is much quicker as we can check on the App rather than emailing or calling. I would estimate this saves us around 10 hours a week.”
In total it is expected that 60 hours were saved over 3 months managing this process.
Reporting and safeguarding
Volunteers can flag safeguarding issues at the click of a button and these can notify all relevant staff members. Catalyst made use of this feature across all programs.
“The email alerts mean we can quickly glance at the report and know all is well or that we need to have some further intervention.”
In fact with some of the ongoing programs like befriending and check-in call programs, the platform can automate most of the manual processes that take up so much of volunteer manager's time, the team at Catalyst even go as far as saying that “as a result of using the App this service is much easier to run and time-efficient.”
Tracking volunteer hours has never been easier. This is a valuable data point for future funding bids. Volunteers can log any time spent volunteering in seconds on the app and the group's feature means you always have a clear breakdown of where the time is being spent.
“Due to the time that would take we didn't really keep track of volunteering hours etc very well. Volunteero has made this much easier. Data can be easily accessed when we need it.”
In summary, the key aim of using Volunteero was to enable Catalyst to widen its service offering through launching new programs. Using a combination of the time savings offered and the totally customisable nature of the platform, Catalyst has grown its volunteer force, launched new programs and improved its volunteer engagement.
“We have found the Volunteero team to be very supportive and open to suggestions and questions. This has allowed us to consider how to set up new volunteering programmes”
If you would like to learn how Volunteero can help your volunteering programs, please go ahead and book a demo. We would love to hear from you.