Thanks to the questions and conversations that came along during sessions with our partners, we have come to the following insights regarding how to get the most out of the volunteer pool. We summed the insights up using four questions:

  1. Should I consider the volunteer pool for our platform?

  2. How to get more people to sign up for the volunteer pool?

  3. How do you get organizations to actively use the volunteer pool?

  4. How can I contribute to the matching process as a platform(admin)?


Should I consider the volunteer pool for our platform?

The volunteer pool is an addition to the existing opportunities offered by a platform to achieve matches. A certain critical mass is needed to make it a success. Decide in advance how many people you want in the volunteer pool so that you have a goal to focus on. Then you will need to campaign to reach that goal. So put together a plan for how you want to do this. This sounds like a lot of work, but if you read the answers to the questions below you will see that it's not too bad.

The main thing is that as an organization you need to know how the functionality works so that everyone knows what it is and why it is useful for volunteers. If you just turn it on and never pay attention to it, the chances of success are a lot less. So keep paying attention to it.


How do you get more people to sign up for the volunteer pool?

This is where it starts, of course. Users can indicate when they sign up or on their profile that they want to join the volunteer pool, but it's helpful to offer some additional options as well. For this, you can create a special landing page or place buttons that take them to the sign-up process.

At Deedmob, we've created a number of tools alongside this to alert users to the volunteer pool:

  • A standard teaser in the lower left corner of the search page that is shown to anyone who is not in the volunteer pool.

  • A screen blocking pop-up shown occasionally, at increasingly longer intervals (2, 6, 12, 26, 52 weeks), to anyone who is not in the volunteer pool.

  • A bimonthly email to anyone not in the volunteer pool. Users can unsubscribe from this through the notification settings.

Tip: One of our partners saw a 50% increase in sign-ups by using all of the above options. If you find the bi-monthly email too aggressive, you can also choose to turn it off after 2x. And then turn it on/off again for a while the following year, for example.

In addition, it is also necessary to use the "normal" information channels; point people to this functionality through the newsletter and social media. It is helpful for the success of campaigns or messages related to the volunteer pool if you redirect people to a page specifically and only focused pop the volunteer pool. By doing so, you make it as clear to the user as possible!

An active volunteer pool

Organizers would prefer a quick response to their requests (even if they are negative). Therefore, the success of a volunteer pool depends in part on how active the volunteers are. Users, on the other hand, should never feel that they are overwhelmed with reminders. To balance these two goals ️ we use a system to keep the volunteer pool filled with volunteers who are actively seeking fun and appropriate volunteer work.


How do you get organizations to actively use the volunteer pool?

The volunteer pool is a great functionality for organizations to actively seek volunteers. Although we have made it very easy for organizations to make use of this, we have found that it is useful to actively inform organizations about the possibilities. Here are some ways our partners are doing this:

  • Landing page: we have created sample pages that we can copy to any platform (for volunteers, for organizations). Contact us if you would like to take advantage of this.

  • Newsletter / social media: if you create a campaign or post to the volunteer pool, redirect the users to a page that focusses specifically on the functionalities of the volunteer pool. By doing so, you make it as clear as possible for the user!

  • (Online) meetings: a meeting is the ideal way to disseminate information and immediately educate a bit (see further below). Moreover, it is a good way to get in touch with new organizations and administrators.

Tip: keep drawing continuous attention to the opportunities. You never know when someone is looking for information, and there are always newcomers who don't yet know what it is and how it works.

At Deedmob, we have created an additional option here to alert organizations to the volunteer pool.

  • The 'new potential volunteer' email: if this email option is activated, organization admins will receive an email when a new user signs up for the volunteer pool and there is at least one matching tag between the user and the relevant activity / opportunity. Some organizations find this email confusing, in which case you may want to adjust the automails (see further below).

This option can easily be turned on and off, so please let us know if this is something you would like to do.

Educating organizations

Discussions with our partners have shown that it is important to "educate" organizations about what the volunteer pool is (some organizations are used to posting an activity / vacancy and then just waiting) and how to use the volunteer pool in such a way that it remains an effective tool for everyone.

If organizations just start writing to everyone, the chances of success are slim, but the chances of volunteers unsubscribing are increased. That benefits no one.

Moreover, only 5 requests can be open at a time per user. So organizations can block other organizations' reachouts. That's something no organisation wants.


How can I contribute to the matching process as a platform(admin)?

The big goal of the volunteer pool is, of course, to generate matches. The great thing is that by using the volunteer pool you give organizations even more resources to achieve this without direct help from you as a platform/organization.

However, there are several ways you can contribute to the success of the volunteer pool and the platform in general.

Customize Automails

Almost all emails on the platform can be customized textually. This allows you to make the message towards the user as clear as possible and tailor it to your 'brand'. This way you can give some extra explanation if necessary.

Ask for feedback and experiment with this, and you will come to a good result.

Contacting users who are about to be removed

As platform administrator you can receive an email when a user is about to be removed from the volunteer pool. You will receive this email 4 days in advance, at the same time as a similar email the user receives.

The user signed up in the first place, so there is clearly an interest in volunteering. So why are they now in danger of being dropped from the volunteer pool? Some partners use this email as a sign to approach the user to see whether and with what they can help them with.

Tip: this email can be turned on/off via the notification settings in your user profile.

Suggest activities to users yourself

It is also possible to play the role of mediator yourself by suggesting activities to users. This process is separate from the volunteer pool, but works much the same way. The only difference is that you are not working from the volunteer pool, but from the database. Do you see an activity and think it would be a good fit for a particular user? Then click on 'Suggest to user' and send a message.

A more detailed article on this will follow.

Remove volunteers

Do you feel that there are volunteers in the volunteer pool who should not be there or are organizations promoting themselves? You can easily remove users from the volunteer pool yourself.


Do you have another tip or trick that is not listed here? Let us know!

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