MOW Scheduler Tutorials :: Using Volunteer Groups

See also: Getting Started with Volunteer Groups

Volunteer Group Features

The Volunteer Group feature set allows the Volunteer Coordinator to delegate responsibility for an ongoing assignment to an Organization, and provides the Organization with new tools to manage this delegated responsibility through the Volunteer Portal.

Features for Volunteer Coordinators

  • Designate an existing Organization as a “Volunteer Group”. A new contact called the “Volunteer Group Placeholder” is automatically added to the organization’s member list.
  • Make an ongoing (or one-time) assignment to the Group via the Placeholder contact.
  • Add contacts to a Volunteer Group by adding the organization association in the contact’s profile.
  • Flag specific individuals on the organization’s contact list as “Group Leaders”. Group Leaders are delegated the ability (and the responsibility) to reassign job shifts between members of the Group.
  • View Volunteer Group assignments on Schedules (daily, weekly, etc.):
    1. Shifts that are assigned to a Volunteer Group Placeholder are shown with a special Group Placeholder icon on all schedules.
    2. Once a job has been reassigned from the placeholder to an individual in the group, the individual's name is shown in the schedule slot along with the Group Assignment icon.

Features for Volunteer Group Members

Volunteer Portal users who are associated with an organization that is a Volunteer Group see a new Volunteer Group item on the main menu. It allows the user to:
  • View a list of other members of the volunteer group, with contact info (email and phone). The list indicates which member is the main contact for the organization and which members are Group Leaders with the ability to reassign jobs within the group.
  • View a group calendar that shows the upcoming assignments of all individual members of their group. Group Assignments are indicated by the Group Assignment icon.
  • View assignments to the Group Placeholder contact. These assignments, indicated with the Group Placeholder icon, are the responsibility of the Group but are not currently assigned to a specific group member.
  • Cancel shifts through the portal or by the cancel link in shift confirmation text/email. If the shift to be canceled was a Group Assignment, it is automatically reassigned to the Group Placeholder, and an email notification is sent to the placeholder contact.

Features for Volunteer Group Leaders

In addition to the regular Volunteer Group Member features…
  • Reassign any Group Placeholder assignment or Group Assignment on the group calendar to another member of the group.
  • Cancel a Group Assignment (and automatically reassign to the Group Placeholder).
  • Cancel a Group or Placeholder assignment and notify the Volunteer Coordinator that the group can't fill the shift (as a last resort only!).
  • Give Group Leader permissions to other members of the Group
  • Recruit new Volunteer to the Group
    • Fill out a simplified application form for new recruit and submit to Volunteer Coordinator for approval. If approved, the new Volunteer will be added to the Scheduler system and will automatically be a member of your Volunteer Group.
    • Send a link to the volunteer application form (if enabled in your system setup) so the recruit can fill out and submit the application themselves. If approved, the new Volunteer will automatically be a member of your Volunteer Group.
Note that the recruiting features mentioned above are for new volunteers only, if you’d like to add a Volunteer who is already in the Scheduler system to your group, please contact your Volunteer Coordinator.

The Volunteer Group Placeholder Contact

The placeholder contact is a special “role” contact that represents an organization rather than an individual. Jobs (ongoing or one-time) can be assigned to placeholders in all the usual assignment contexts, but the placeholder contact has some distinctive properties:
  • placeholder contact name is same as the organization name
  • assignments to the placeholder contact are displayed on schedules with a distinctive Volunteer Group icon
  • the placeholder contact inherits the contact info for the Organization main contact, so that shift reminder notifications and assignment confirmations for the placeholder are sent to the organization’s main contact. However you may change the placeholder's contact info through the contact profile.
  • placeholder contacts are allowed to have the same email address as another contact (unlike regular contacts, which must have a unique email address)

The Volunteer Group Calendar

Volunteer Portal users who are members of at least one Volunteer Group have a Volunteer Group menu item that includes options to view the Group member list, and the Group calendar with all group members' assignments for the month. The calendar shown is for a Group Leader. Other members see a similar calendar, without the "Group Assignment edit" buttons. Volunteer Group Calendar