Keeping volunteers engaged and willing to serve

When it comes to ministry scheduling, every scheduler will admit that they have a certain few volunteers that are their “regulars.” These are the volunteers you can consistently rely on to show up when scheduled, fill in if others need a sub, and help out when you’re in a jam. But what is it that keeps those volunteers engaged and willing to serve regularly? And how can we get more volunteers to be our regulars? Here are some ideas to help engage your volunteers and retain them for the long run!

Keep long term volunteers
Finding new volunteers is crucial for growing your ministries, and Ministry Scheduler Pro has online enrollment forms that make it simple for new volunteers to get involved. But while new volunteers are important, it is vital to keep the volunteers you have rather than try to find new ones for each schedule. Some churches ask for volunteers to commit to ministry for a certain amount of time, and then volunteers can choose to recommit when that time is up. But more often than not, volunteers have no stipulation to be scheduled. So how do you get your volunteers to stick around?

Stay in communication
Volunteers need and like to be kept in the loop, and Ministry Scheduler Pro makes it easy to let your volunteers know when you need their input. Whether it’s letting them know that the latest schedule is ready or letting them know of any changes that have come up due to COVID, communicating with your volunteers helps them keep up-to-date.

Allow independence
As a scheduler, you have a lot of responsibility when it comes to creating a ministry schedule. But when you can involve your volunteers in the process, it can make things much easier. With Ministry Scheduler Pro, volunteers can take more control of their schedules via the Web Terminal. This essential tool allows them to enter their own can’t serve times and away dates, request subs, or even fill an open position on the schedule. As the scheduler, you are still in control, but trusting your volunteers with these responsibilities will keep them engaged and confident about their ministry.

Appreciate your volunteers
No one likes to be taken for granted; this is especially true when it comes to your ministry volunteers. Whether they have the task of providing music for the entire service or are at the door to greet others, every ministry role is vital in the service, so let it be known. The simple gesture of thanking your volunteers will go a long way.

Be flexible
Remember that your volunteers are exactly that, volunteers. They have lives outside of serving in their ministry. Things will come up that may inconvenience you as the scheduler. Still, by being flexible, you’ll keep a positive relationship with your volunteers intact, and they won’t forget that time you were able to make things work. Another key to your flexibility as a scheduler is in how you schedule your volunteers.

Find the right scheduling method
No two churches are the same. No two groups of volunteers are the same. That’s why Ministry Scheduler Pro is equipped to handle four different scheduling methods that you can use individually or in combination with each other to create your volunteer schedule.

  1. Manual handpicking of volunteers
  2. Repeating assignments
  3. Auto scheduling
  4. Self signup

Certain ministries or groups of volunteers will gravitate toward specific scheduling methods. For an in-depth look at each scheduling method and when to use them, check out our blog article “Different Ways to Schedule Your Volunteers”. What’s important is to find the method or methods that fit best for you, your ministries, and your volunteers. When your volunteers are scheduled consistently, and at times that they are willing and able to help, they’ll know what to expect and be glad to continue to serve.

Whether your church is big or small, Ministry Scheduler Pro can help you grow your ministries and keep your volunteers engaged and happy to help. Contact the Ministry Scheduler Pro team today, and let one of our Onboarding Specialists give you a personalized tour!