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Do you want to master your volunteer management?

We recently hosted a football management webinar with guest speakers Chris Armond, Chair of Trustees, Berkhamsted Raiders CFC, and Kevin Miller, Head of Commercial & Marketing at Whitehawk FC about how they achieve exactly that.

Keep reading to find actionable tips and tricks as well as expert advice on how to get the most out of your volunteers, how to make them feel valued and how to keep them coming back for more.

Volunteers are a huge part of our club. The club wouldn’t exist without them, so there’s always a big challenge of recruiting new volunteers and keeping them engaged.

Chris Armond, Berkhamsted Raiders CFC

Why is volunteer engagement important?

As with most things, volunteer recruitment and management should be built on a foundation of mutual encouragement and respect. Volunteers need to feel valued and appreciated – after all they give up so much to keep the club running. Whether that’s a pair of helping hands marking out pitches or painting a club house, it all helps and allows the club to function.

With over 230 volunteers at Berkhamsted Raiders CFC, Chris has learnt a thing or two about how to keep people pulling in one direction and feeling engaged at the club.

How can you attract new volunteers?

This can be easier than you think and starts from the moment a player signs up.

Chris explains, “One thing we do that has worked exceptionally well for us in previous years is when we ask people to register for the club, we ask them a series of questions. Such as what are your skills? What is your day job? Are you interested in volunteering? Are you interested in being a manager or another role.”

By asking these questions, Berkhamsted Raiders CFC can identify parents that have particular skill sets or who are simply just interested in helping at the club. This helps to save them a lot of time in recruiting volunteers in the community and help to fill out their database of volunteers more efficiently.

Chris adds, “We manage the volunteer sign up process through LoveAdmin and we use that a lot, especially when we’ve got a tournament coming up.”

Asking at the registration stage is a great way to quickly identify skillsets already in your club. You’ll be surprised by who has skills in HR, Marketing or Accountancy. 

Chris explains, “Unless you ask those questions, you’ll never know who you have involved already at the club”.

Quick tips to keep your volunteers engaged and coming back

#1 Make sure they feel valued

Volunteers are at the heart of any club – without them and their dedication, clubs would cease to exist. That’s why it’s important to show your appreciation. You can keep it simple with stakeholder drinks and socials or get a little more fancy with dinners and awards.

Chris says “We like to say thank you to our volunteers as much as we can. We run drinks events, socials and more to help create an environment where they feel valued”.

#2 Invest in their qualifications

Keeping your volunteers’ training up to date is vital. Berkhamsted Raiders CFC achieve this by running training with volunteers at the start of the season, plus new manager workshops, and, parent referee workshops and coaching sessions. By investing in their training, volunteers will feel more valued and a part of the club. 

#3 Provide social opportunities

By providing social opportunities for volunteers, you’re helping to build a stronger community between volunteers, as well as make them feel invested in the clubs’ success.

You can try an activity day where volunteers get to help with things like painting of the grounds. Kevin says “We’ll get some paint and ask volunteers to do some touching up around the ground. They can then take pride in their contribution to the club every time they visit the grounds.”

#4 Incentivise it

Aside from encouraging, you can always incentivise becoming a volunteer. For example, you could say that anyone who joins up and contributes to the club is able to get a season ticket, perhaps even food and drink during matches.

Engaging with volunteers is a vital part of managing your club. They are the lifeblood of your organisation and deserve to be treated with respect. By doing this you will find management smoother and your volunteers more efficient.

#5 Use communications

You can use software like LoveAdmin to find volunteers from your existing members and engage with your volunteer group, through tools like email and SMS. You can also create forms that pull important information from anyone registering that will make volunteer recruitment easier. It’s much easier when your communications are all in one place – Discover what LoveAdmin can do for you here.

Admin can be a pain for volunteers who don’t have a lot of time. Here’s how you can ease that with the right software:

Our software has been built for grassroots football clubs just like you. Are you looking for a system that can help your volunteers:

  • Streamline your registration process and integrate with the Whole Game System
  • Automate your payment collections, reconciliation and reminders
  • Improve your financial visibility with up-to-date payment reports
  • Simplify your holiday camp management
  • Communicate in groups via email and SMS
  • Store all of your information securely in one place

Do you want to see our football management software for yourself? Get a no-obligation demo here.

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