Smarter Impact Starts Here

Tools & Templates

Boost your Volunteer Quotient by using proven tools and strategies. Enhance your impact by refining your practice in any or all of the 8 VQ areas of practice. Tools are free and downloadable.

Not sure where to start? Begin by assessing your current VQ – then use that score as a roadmap to download other tools and take steps to raise your VQ and increase your impact.

COVID-19 Specific Tools

Volunteer Engagement Plan for COVID-19 Recovery, Reopening, and Return

While every organization that engages volunteers has been affected to some degree by the COVID-19 pandemic, no one approach can guide all of them in recovery and return to operations. Each organization must abide by its local mandates and protocols, its capacity, and the unique nature of its mission and services. Nevertheless, all organizations will likely reopen, return, and recover in phases and the ways that volunteers are engaged should align with organizations’ plans. Use this template to guide your planning.

Engagement Response Plan for COVID-19

A complete template to develop a plan for your organization’s volunteer engagement response to the COVID-19 pandemic or any other emergency. Leverage existing strengths, fill critical needs, and identify resources and communications needed to sustain safe levels of engagement.

Volunteer Roles

Needs Assessment

Reflect on your current successes and what would be possible if more resources were available. This needs assessment helps identify new strategic roles for volunteers to build organizational capacity and address the organization’s dreams and challenges.

Strategic Volunteer Roles

Developing volunteer opportunities is easy – but ensuring that the work is truly strategic can be much more challenging. Use this exercise to identify opportunities that are both necessary and attractive to volunteers.

Volunteer Position Description

A Position Description details the responsibilities and expectations of the volunteer assignment and is the basis for cultivation, selection, and support of volunteers as well as measuring the impact of the volunteer’s contributions. A well-written volunteer position description is key to the success of any staff/volunteer collaboration.

Volunteer Role Assessment

Developing a position for a volunteer to completed — whether onside or remotely — takes considerations. The role be strategic (mission-aligned) and the organization needs to be certain it has the resources and time to support the volunteer to success. Use this tool to assess whether a position can effectively be implemented, including as a ‘virtual’ volunteer opportunity.

Cultivating Volunteers
Volunteer Recruitment Plan

Develop a plan for targeted recruitment of candidates who are qualified to fill your available volunteer positions. Departmental staff should partner with volunteer engagement leadership to complete this template and work together on a plan that will efficiently reach those most likely to apply for your volunteer opportunities.  

Strategic Messaging

Strategic messages entice individuals to learn more about a volunteer opportunity. Use this template to develop a message that can be used online, as a script for a phone call, or shared in communications to existing volunteers.  

Transforming Days of Service Into Ongoing Engagement

Episodic volunteering is on the rise. Use this checklist to plan your next Day of Service so that your organization can transform some of the one-time volunteers into ongoing commitments.

Screening and Placement
Application Checklist

Applications are an important tool in screening prospective volunteers. By gathering basic information about a prospective volunteer, applications can help determine an individual’s availability, interests, and qualifications, as well as provide information to help customize interviews.  Refer to this checklist when developing or assessing your application.

Interview Questions

Effective interview questions help both the interviewer and the potential volunteer determine whether this position is the right fit. Use this template to develop diverse and enlightening questions to screen for appropriate skills, motivations, and organizational fit.  

Training

Volunteer Training Plan

Develop a training plan in three easy steps and ensure that volunteers are set up with the skills and information they need to be successful.

Defining Expectations

Before any work begins, volunteers and staff should clearly define and agree upon expectations. This template guides onboarding and meetings to define the goals of the work, who is responsible for what, and how everyone involved will communicate.

Support and Accountability

Volunteer Support Plan

Volunteers need and deserve support to be successful. Use this chart to ensure that each volunteer has a designated support person and a plan for checking in regularly.

Work Plan

Outlining the scope of a project becomes a common reference for the entire project team and is vital to tracking progress. A Work Plan establishes the vision and impact of a project, outlines key action steps, and provides indicators against which leaders can measure progress.

Exit Interview Questions

Exit interviews provide a valuable opportunity to learn and improve the volunteer experience for the future. This template helps leaders design and conduct exit interviews that reveal useful information.

Teambuilding Checklist

With an increasingly hybrid workforce (volunteers and staff working both onsite and remotely), building a sense of community has never been more important. Consider these tactics to build and nurture a sense of community among volunteers and staff.

Individual Volunteer Plan (IVP)

The Individual Volunteer Plan is designed to customize a volunteer engagement career to meet both the volunteer’s aspirations and the organization’s needs. The benefit of using an IVP is that the process of completing the template strategically and intentionally develops leaders from within your community of volunteers—people who will take your organization into your preferred future.

Performance Improvement Plan (PIP)

For that rare occasion where training and coaching isn’t enough to ensure a volunteer’s successful performance, a Performance Improvement Plan (PIP) may be useful to support a positive corrective action plan. A PIP clearly defines the problem behavior or performance and provides action steps to be taken.

Recognition and Measuring Impact

Thanking Volunteers and Acknowledging Impact
Acknowledging the impact of volunteers’ contributions is one of the most compelling ways to thank them. Use this template as a guide for developing meaningful messages of thanks.
Recognizing Impact

Today, most volunteers seek to know that their efforts make a difference and are motivated by being acknowledged for that impact. Use this checklist to inspire meaningful ways to acknowledge the impact that volunteers have on your organization.

Policies and Infrastructure

Volunteer Handbook Outline

A comprehensive handbook sets expectations, provides guidance to keep volunteers and staff safe, and manages risks in all areas where volunteers are involved. Use this outline to develop your own volunteer handbook.

Culture and Leadership Support

What’s Your VQ?

Volunteer Quotient, or VQ, is an organization’s ability to leverage volunteer talent to achieve smarter impact. Every organization already has a VQ. Answer these questions to find out your organization’s VQ – and see where you can boost your practice to have even smarter impact.

Questions for Leaders

Build understanding of and support for volunteer engagement by discussing these questions with organizational leadership.