Americans are increasingly donating their time and efforts to causes they believe in. Volunteering has hit a record high in recent years. However, if volunteers aren’t satisfied with their experience with your organization, they might not continue to work with you.
Volunteer surveys are a great way to make sure your volunteers have a good experience with your organization. By encouraging volunteers to honestly share their experiences working with your organization, you’ll be able to understand where you can improve the volunteer experience and keep your volunteers engaged. Read more to discover which questions you should be asking on volunteer satisfaction surveys.
Importance of Satisfaction Surveys
In 2018, a collective 77.4 million Americans volunteered a cumulative total of 6.9 billion hours, producing an estimated $167 billion worth of labor. Because volunteers are such an instrumental part of the operations of so many organizations, having a proper volunteer engagement strategy to measure volunteer satisfaction is crucial.
Volunteers willingly give their time to your organization, so you’ll want to keep them satisfied. However, happy volunteers will also benefit your organization. Some of the benefits you gain from giving your volunteers a good experience include:
- Greater volunteer retention
- Higher productivity
- Increased opportunities to reach new volunteers
- Boosted volunteer attendance rates
Volunteers want to feel recognized and valued by your organization. After all, they are donating their time and efforts to help further your organization’s mission, so you’ll want to make them feel appreciated with a proper thank you. In fact, two out of the five most common reasons why volunteers quit include feeling like they aren’t recognized. Volunteer satisfaction surveys can help you build strong, positive relationships with volunteers and best understand your volunteers’ wants and needs.
Volunteer Survey Questions
The best volunteer satisfaction survey questions will empower your volunteers. Conducting feedback on an ongoing and predictable basis will build a culture of mutual respect between you and your volunteers and improve the volunteer experience.
However, you have to ask the right questions on a satisfaction survey to keep your volunteers engaged and loyal to your organization. Before you even begin drafting survey questions, think about what goal you would like to achieve by conducting the survey.
Do you want to increase your volunteer retention rate or attract a new demographic of volunteers? The purpose of the survey will inform what volunteer satisfaction survey questions to ask. Regardless of your goals, all questions should relate to your organizational goals, with the objective of improving your volunteering program. Below, we’ll discuss the questions to ask on a satisfaction survey.
1. What Are Your Volunteers’ Motives?
Understanding your volunteers’ motives for volunteering will help you more manage your volunteers more effectively and provide better support. Therefore, you should ask your volunteers what motivates them to continue working with your organization. To engage top-quality volunteers, you have to learn why they want to work with your organization.
Understanding your volunteers’ reasons for giving their time will help you assign them the right roles and show them the proper appreciation. Questions you can ask to better understand your volunteers’ motivations include:
- Why do you volunteer?
- What does your community value? How does the work you do with our organization serve the needs of the community?
- How do your goals align with our organization’s mission? Do you feel your work furthers this mission?
- Do you have any special skills or relevant experience that could further our mission?
- How can our organization better support your work as a volunteer?
2. How Was the Volunteer Application Process?
In addition to understanding what motivates your volunteers, you’ll want to ask your volunteers about the application process. Get feedback about how volunteers found your organization, how easy or difficult it was to apply, and if they’d recommend your organization to other volunteers. Understanding current volunteers’ experiences with the recruitment and application process will help you better target your organization’s marketing and outreach efforts.
Some questions you might want to incorporate in your volunteer satisfaction survey include:
- How did you hear about our organization? Newspaper, email, snail-mail, online advertisement, billboard, coworker, friends and family, social media, other (please specify).
- How did you register with our organization? Online, through the mail, in-person, other (please specify).
- How soon did our organization contact you after you registered? How were you contacted?
- Are there any improvements we can make to the application process?
3. How Was the Training Process?
You’ll also want to make sure your volunteers had a positive training experience. Your volunteers won’t have as much confidence in their role in your organization if they aren’t equipped with the skills and knowledge they need to do their work.
Questions you can ask to better understand your volunteers’ experiences with the training process include:
- Were the requirements of the position clear?
- Did you understand our directions?
- How well prepared did you feel for your volunteer position?
- How much training time did you receive?
- Where might there have been gaps in your training? How can we improve the training process?
4. How Would You Rate Your Overall Experience?
Being able to gauge how satisfied volunteers are with their overall experience is one of the most important metrics you can measure. Satisfied volunteers are more likely to be more productive and continue working with your organization.
You might want to consider asking volunteers to rate different aspects of their experience with your organization on a scale from 1 to 10. Using a simple rating system will allow you to easily quantify and visualize your results to see areas where you can improve the volunteer experience. This system is also a much faster way of polling your volunteers, which is crucial because people typically start to abandon surveys after 7 to 8 minutes.
Questions you can ask to measure volunteer satisfaction include:
- How satisfied did this volunteering experience make you feel?
- How valued do you feel as a volunteer?
- How likely are you to volunteer with us again?
- What do you enjoy about volunteering with us?
- What is the main reason you volunteered with us?
5. How Could We Improve the Volunteer Experience?
Finally, you’ll want to ask your volunteers how you could generally improve their experience. While the previous questions should give you more specific insights into the volunteer experience, you should still ask your volunteers if they have any recommendations to improve your organization and the volunteer experience. Asking about your organization’s culture is one of the best ways to gauge how you can improve the volunteer experience. A positive organizational culture will increase your volunteers’ satisfaction and productivity.
Work With Volgistics for Your Volunteer Management Needs
For two decades, Volgistics has been providing volunteer management software to help track your volunteers and keep them satisfied. Our software can help you manage your volunteers in multiple ways, including:
- Scheduling: Our software provides options for flexible scheduling and allows for both manual and automated reminders.
- Tracking: Easily track detailed volunteer identification information and keep track of total hours.
- Reporting: Quickly and easily generate PDF or Excel reports with Volgistics.
- Recruiting: Advertise volunteering opportunities, provide application forms, and add new volunteers to your database from your organization’s website.
- Application forms:Collect all relevant information from potential volunteers with application forms embedded into your website, which will automatically be added to your database.
Contact Volgistics today to learn more about how our volunteer management software services can help you keep your volunteers satisfied!