For organizations, especially non-profits, working towards reaching their goals is what helps them to establish themselves in the market. Their operations determine how they cater to the target audience, the solutions they can provide, and the reputation they are able to build amongst the public. Non-profit organizations often conduct volunteer programs. And, for them to be successful with their operations, they need the involvement of willing and skilled employees who will engage with their activities and achieve common goals.  

Why Do You Need Employee Engagement?

For any organization to function at its maximum potential, it needs the best employees who are skilled and willingly put in their time and efforts to achieve a particular goal. The same goes for an organization looking to run a volunteer program. It needs employee involvement to conduct various activities to reach its set targets in the short or long term. Employee engagement becomes necessary as it allows organizations to run programs smoothly without having to worry about any hassle. They serve as a backbone for achieving the best results. 

Hence, to make sure your employees feel encouraged to engage with planned volunteer activities, and involve themselves in all the steps involved, here’s a look at some actionable strategies to boost their engagement. 

volunteer activities

Photo by Campaign Creators on Unsplash

7 Actionable Strategies to Boost Employee Engagement

1. Make the right tools available: To encourage the active involvement of employees in volunteer programs, it is necessary to make provisions for all required tools so that they can engage conveniently. This includes infrastructural facilities such as break rooms and dedicated work areas, software facilities such as Salesforce volunteer management for better task organization and management, or any additional resources for smoother operations, etc. When employees will be equipped with all things necessary to be actively involved, it will help them engage more with your volunteer programs. This in turn will help you run smoother volunteer programs in the long run.

2. Improve individual attention: Boosting employee engagement through volunteer activities requires you to take the best approach that will work well with each person. You could have different methods in mind, but they may not all work and thus end up reducing your results. Improving individual attention can help make employees feel more heard. You can interact with each employee involved to understand how they work, their preferences, and what will make them want to be more involved. Gathering all this information can help you learn the next steps that are required to have more people involved and also take the necessary steps for a successful volunteer program.

3. Training activities: When participating in volunteer activities, employees would need to be aware of what they’re supposed to do and how they’re supposed to do it. Engagement will be low if they remain unaware of the required operations. Conducting training activities or providing training manuals to participating employees can help improve their rates of involvement. You can do so by conducting group training meets, hosting educational webinars, providing online videos or PDFs with relevant material, etc. Through these resources, employees will be able to learn more about the volunteer activities and understand the different ways they need to proceed. Being aware of the various steps will improve employee engagement for a successful volunteer program. 

4. Listen to feedback: To increase employee engagement, taking feedback on how to make them feel more involved is crucial. You may have specific steps in mind, but that may not be as convenient for several employees. Taking into consideration the methods they prefer, their timings, and activities they want to be involved in, can help you take necessary measures to make the volunteer activities more friendly for them. 77% of working employees feel that engaging in a volunteer activity will boost their wellbeing. You can collect feedback by way of questionnaires, or one-on-one interviews to understand the needs and requirements for employees to engage more with the volunteer program. 

5. Improve social interactions: Employees will feel more inclined to engage in volunteer activities when they feel like they can conveniently work with those around them. You can encourage the creation of new and closer connections between everyone to achieve a friendly workspace environment. You can do so by conducting group activities, having group chats with employees involved, team-building exercises, and even make use of volunteer management software.

It allows employees to feel more comfortable, and it will increase the chances of them enjoying the work that they do. When all employees involved can collaborate and work conveniently, you will see higher engagement in your volunteer activities. Going further, this will help you to run successful volunteer programs.

6. Stick to moral values: When conducting volunteer activities, there will be particular values that you hold close and want to work towards. Taking the necessary steps required to align activities with beliefs will give employees insight into the seriousness of your work. They will have a better understanding of the purpose of a volunteer program and may also feel interested to know more about the values you hold. With better awareness, there is an increased chance of higher employee engagement in volunteer activities and even improved performances. Sticking to set values is a crucial way to encourage employees and boost their involvement. 

7. Provide recognition: When employees feel seen and acknowledged, they will feel more inclined to put in better efforts for volunteer activities. Employee recognition is important in any workplace to show hardworking workers that their time and efforts are appreciated. It helps them feel like they belong in the correct place and are encouraged to keep putting in their best efforts for successful results. Providing employee recognition through certifications, mementos, honorary programs, paid time off, etc, is a great way to boost morale and increase involvement. About 60% of companies give their employees a PTO in order to have them volunteer. With such incentives and recognition, employees will feel appreciated and will be more likely to engage more within different volunteer activities. 

Taking Everything into Account

Employee engagement in volunteer activities is crucial for the success of any volunteer program. Without their involvement, it will be challenging to carry out the necessary steps for a successful result. Therefore, it becomes essential to curate activities keeping in mind the best methods for employee involvement.

For running successful volunteer activities, put into place functional strategies that will encourage employees to put in their time, and efforts, and engage more with the operations. These strategies will allow you to not only run a successful volunteer program, but also invite all the employees to feel more comfortable at the workplace and involve themselves voluntarily.