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Managing volunteers

Are you new to volunteer management?  Or believe you could get more out of your volunteering programme?  You've come to the right place!  The Volunteer Centre facilitates the development of good practice in volunteering through learning from the many organisations we work with.  By ‘good practice’ we mean what you can do to make volunteering work positively both for the organisation involving the volunteer and for the volunteer. 

So what is good practice?  Key elements include:

  • Having a volunteer policy that guides the organisation's involvement of volunteers
  • Giving volunteers clear role descriptions
  • Giving volunteers an induction
  • Insuring your volunteers and making them aware of health and safety issues
  • Giving your volunteers support and any ongoing training they require to fulfill their role
  • Paying travel expenses and offering these expenses without waiting to be asked by your volunteers
  • Having a problem solving procedure in case things go wrong
  • Applying your organisation's commitment to equal opportunities in how you recruit, select and coordinate volunteers
  • Recognising and valuing your volunteers and the contribution they make. 

Good practice isn’t set in stone.  We are all developing what we mean by good practice, as volunteering itself develops. See our Good Practice Resources page for further guidance.

Why involve volunteers. Having all your good practice in place is critical, but before you start to develop roles spending some time to consider Why you want to involve volunteers will help with the rest of the process.

Please Contact Us to share your positive (or challenging) experiences so we can pass on what you’ve learnt to others. 

To find funders who will cover volunteer expenses see South Yorkshire Funding Advice Bureau (SYFAB).  There is no general funding for volunteer expenses - but you can get funding to cover them.  Firstly, apply only to those funders who are interested the same beneficiaries that you work with (eg older people, disadvantaged young people) and secondly, be clear about the impact/the difference your volunteers make.  Include volunteer expenses under 'project costs'.

If you have unanswered questions or concerns or would like any advice or support with developing or delivering your volunteer programme contact:

Paul Harvey
Volunteer Centre Manager
0114 253 6648

For an overview of the range of services we offer, please see our We involve volunteers page.