Running a successful live event often requires a large production staff, but unless you have an endless budget, hiring all the personnel you need may not be possible. With this in mind, event volunteers can be a valuable resource to help fill in staffing gaps while staying above your bottom line. In order to effectively utilize these additional sets of hands, you'll need to have set processes and a robust event operations solution in place.
Our expert support team has spent a lot of time working on-site at some of the biggest events in the world with large volunteer programs. With their insight, we've compiled some useful tips to help you better manage your volunteer program for your next event!
Streamline Volunteer Applications
First and foremost, you'll need to recruit and vet the best people for the job! Start by considering where volunteers might be most useful to your operation, whether helping at the box office, handing out swag, marshaling cars in the parking lot, or elsewhere. Once you've defined the roles you want your volunteers to fill, create a custom volunteer application form branded to your event and publish it on all of your public-facing platforms to get the word out. With our custom web forms, all submitted volunteer applications automatically populate contact fields in our centralized database, eliminating time-consuming data entry and human error. From there, you can quickly approve or decline applications.
Advance and Communicate With Volunteers
Once you've selected your event volunteers, you'll need to onboard them by collecting important pieces of information, such as t-shirt size and available work hours. Using our custom advancement forms, all of this information will instantly attach to each volunteer contact record when submitted. Then, using our communication tools, send volunteers all of the information they need to know to be prepared for the event ahead, including important training dates, supervisor contact info, and event day logistics such as what to wear! Save time by sending these emails in batches by specific volunteer type or group. Additionally, depending on how your organization is set up, grant volunteers access to view shared calendars and an internal messaging board.
Schedule and Track Volunteer Hours
Scheduling any number of people is no small feat, especially across a sprawling event site over the course of multiple days. With our volunteer management tools, you can schedule work shifts based on job type and availability, and easily monitor timing conflicts so no one gets double booked! To ensure all volunteers have the most up to date shift schedules, send them individualized itineraries that automatically sync when changes are made. This way, they always know when and where they need to be. When event day arrives, quickly check volunteers in and out on-site, and track maximum volunteer hours and shift completion.
It's obvious the value that volunteers can bring to any live event when managed efficiently. With an event operations solution, you'll be able to harness the full potential of these extra hands, ensuring the success of your event!
Interested in learning more about how we can help you manage your volunteer program with our flexible event operations software? Request a demo today!