You're tasked with planning a nonprofit picnic, but how can you stay organized and under-budget? Use these volunteer tracking tools and tips to help.
Picture this: you've decided to organize a fabulous non-profit event for your community. But you have no idea how to go about volunteer tracking or keeping the costs down.
Events can often get out of hand without the correct organizational tools. The last thing you want is to be left with a big bill or volunteers who are unclear about their purpose or roles.
Well don't worry, this article will give you all the top tips on how to get the most out of your volunteers, whilst utilizing the best software to do so. Whether it's an outdoor event, family BBQ, church fundraiser, or tailgate party you can be sure to put on the best event of your life with a few simple steps!
Preparation is the Key to Success
When hosting an event, no matter how big or small it is, the key to its success is based upon how much planning you have done beforehand. Especially, when you are working with volunteers, the vital thing is that everyone is on the same page and has the same goal in mind.
This is why volunteer tracking and management software can be so important when considering things like the logistics, timings, and runnings of an event. It allows you to digitally schedule the event, manage your volunteers, and send information easily back and forth.
You can track the status of not just your volunteers but also your attendees. You can then create invitation lists that are customizable for any event.
You can also make your volunteer sign up sheet easily accessible online. This will then enable you to reach a wider audience and therefore create more interest in your event.
Volunteer tracking software takes the stress out of organizing for the planner, giving them more time to focus on other aspects of the event. It gives you that extra level of communication and infrastructure that you wouldn't have otherwise.
Let Your Volunteers Know Their Value
A non-profit event can often not even take place without the strength and motivation of the volunteers. Let them know how much you appreciate them taking the time to help you.
Send an email out beforehand using the volunteer management software. You can use this email to thank them for their dedication and to show how grateful you are. This is also a good opportunity to clarify any last minute queries or questions, so everybody is confident leading up to the big day.
If you can, on the actual day of the event, walk around and have individual conversations with your volunteers. Face to face time is so important. They will hopefully have a genuine interest in your cause or event, so it's likely you will have plenty to talk about. This is also a good time just to check that everyone is where they are meant to be.
At the end of the event, make sure to call all your volunteers together to thank them for all their hard work which has, ultimately, lead to the event being a great success. If you can offer them a small thankyou gift within your budget that can go a long way to make them feel valued. to be.
Ensure also that you send a follow-up email, detailing all the great parts of the day. This email can also catalog, for example, how much money you raised if it was a fundraiser. This will show all your volunteers that their time has been well spent on an amazing event.
What Kind of Event is Right for You?
The type of event you want to host can vary drastically depending on what you what to achieve and the resources or space you have available. Friendly, more intimate gatherings, such as tailgate parties or dance parties will need fewer volunteers than say ecological cleanup events or black-tie ball fundraisers.
It is essential to make sure that you can track and monitor what you are organizing to prevent any unpleasant scenarios where you are left with not enough items, entertainment, or volunteers.
Volunteer tracking software can be used for events of all sizes. With tailgating parties or dance parties you can, for example, track what food or drink everyone is bringing to ensure you don't get repeats or run out of food. With a smaller event, the attendees and volunteer will feel a greater sense of closeness and makes the event feel special.
For larger events such as eco cleanups, fundraisers, or church BBQs you can create sign up sheets and designate roles for your volunteers. These kinds of events are great for community spirit, developing links in the community and bringing people together for a good cause.
There is No Harm Asking
If your non-profit event is in any way connected to charity or some form of benefit to the community you may be able to ask for free venue hire or free or discounted catering.
Businesses and venue spaces are usually able to accommodate charitable causes within reason, asking for free or discounted services may save you hundreds of dollars you don't need to spend. Often the option of free publicity in a local paper might be enough for you to secure a fabulous venue for a fraction of the cost!
Catering options can also severely cut into event budgets, not to mention gluten-free, vegetarian, or vegan options you may need to provide. Why not ask your volunteers or invitees to all bring a dish and do a potluck? This is a fun and cheap way to provide food when you are on a budget!
We hope this guide of volunteer tracking tools and tips has given you the information you need to put on your perfect non-profit event. If you would like to find out about other event planning tips, check out our blog.