Today's post is a result of a recent conversation with a fellow nonprofit executive director. He was seeking advice on recruiting and managing effective volunteer teams. I gave him an overview of my top volunteer management tips, with #1 being: have potential volunteers complete an application. A completed application not only shows an initial commitment on behalf of the volunteer, but a carefully crafted one can save you a ton of time in the long run.
Think about it, a strategically designed volunteer application can replace the numerous coffee meetings we typically have in order to interview and potentially place volunteers. Instead of spending an hour each with 20 potential volunteers, you can simply spend 30 minutes to an hour reviewing information and making the appropriate assignments. You just saved 20+ hours of your valuable time - and are likely making a more educated decision to boot!
Need an example to get your started? View the volunteer application I created for WIT's Strategic Volunteering program.