We are often asked how we should setup board volunteers in VolunteerMatters. Should it be a position? How should we track the hours a board member invests? How should we manage attendance to board meetings? While the system is flexible enough to accommodate several approaches, we would like to outline the approach that has worked best for our YMCA customers.
For a single branch Y or associations with a single board for all branches, setup a project dedicated to the board (e.g., “Volunteer Board”). Multi-branch associations that have multiple boards should setup a multiple projects (e.g., one project per branch and one for the association board). I would mark their publish mode as "Administrator" (so only organizers and admins an see it in the project catalog). I would also turn on the 'Enable Volunteer Self-Report Hours' feature. I would then create a position for each board seat. You may want it to be a single position for all board members (i.e. "Board Member") or you may want to create several positions for the type of board member (e.g., Chairman of the Board, Treasurer, Executive Board Member, Advisory Board Member). We recommend having the position span your "year" (annual, fiscal or however you determine a board cycle). For example, if you operate on an annual calendar, for 2018 the position would start on 1/1/2018 and end on 12/31/2018. You may also consider setting a default number of credited hours (see below). Once you setup one of the board projects for a branch, you can copy it for the other branches so you don't have to build the project from scratch every time. To copy a project, visit the project's 'Setup' and you'll see a 'Copy' button in the panel at the top-right of the setup page. Also, when creating next year’s ‘board’ you can copy the previous year’s board project and make the appropriate assignments.
For board members, I would administratively "Assign" your board members to their positions rather than asking them to self-sign-up like we might to for other assignments.
We want to encourage our board members to accurately track the hours they are investing as it is important for the organization to understand it's allocation of resources and to properly recognize the efforts of our most dedicated volunteers. There are three avenues for tracking hours for positions. You can chose to use one, two, or combine all three of these methods.
Default Credit Hours
When creating the position itself, you could set a default number of credit hours for the assignment. This is the number f hours you want to credit the board member outside of anything you may ask a board member to sign-up to do via the system. For example, if you hold bi-monthly board meetings for 3 hours and don't want to track it as a shift (see below) you could just set the default credited hours to 18 hours (6 meetings x 3hrs). They would get the credit for those hours regardless of their attendance.
Shift or Task Assignments
Even though they are assigned to a board position they can also sign-up to work a shift or perform a task for any project. When they attend a shift or complete a task, the system will automatically record the time spent for those activities. For example, a board member could volunteer to work a shift reading to school children and be credited with those hours separate from their board obligations. You could also decide to create shifts for board meetings that recur every other month for 3hrs each. You can track attendance and the system would provide credit as long as they were marked attended.
When the volunteer logs-in to the portal, under 'My Assignments' they will see a button to 'Submit Hours' under their board position. Clicking that button will allow the board member to record any hours they performed on behalf of the YMCA in their capacity as a board member outside of anything that was covered by default credit hours or any shift or task work. For example, if a board member were to make calls on behalf of the YMCA for the annual campaign, they could log into the portal, click on 'submit hours' and enter the date, number of hours and description of the work performed.