Below are a number of questions you should address and answer honestly, before you recruit volunteers. If your organisation already involves volunteers, you can use these questions to evaluate the effectiveness of your current programme.
* What do we need or want to do?
* Why is it important for this to be done?
* Why do we want to use a volunteer rather than a member of staff?
* Can we accept the limitations of volunteers’ time?
* Do we understand that their first commitment may not be to us?
* Are our volunteer policies up to date?
* Will our insurance cover volunteers who have a physical or mental health issue?
* Do we have to have age restrictions?
* Do volunteers need to have previous skills or knowledge?
* How many volunteers will be needed?
* How will we recruit them?
* Will volunteers receive the same benefits as staff (subsidised meals, uniforms, etc.)?
* Can sufficient staff time be allocated to implement the programme?
* Do we have to hire an additional member of staff to look after volunteers?
* How will the programme be funded?
* Who will answer phones / letters of enquiries from prospective volunteers?
* Who will prepare the induction and training materials?
* Who will interview/select volunteers?
* What kind of training is required?
* Who will induct and train volunteers?
* Who will co-ordinate the programme?
* Who will supervise the volunteers?
* Where will volunteers be trained and inducted?
* Where will the volunteers actually do their work?
* How will we recognise and reward volunteers?
* Will all staff support the volunteer programme?
* Will staff accept sharing duties?
* Will staff resent the volunteers’ presence and think their role is at risk?