Volunteer management tools can help your nonprofit reach both tech-savvy and non-tech savvy senior volunteers.
Volunteerism offers a variety of benefits for seniors who are looking to provide assistance to the community. Volunteerism has been shown to provide volunteers socialization, mental-health, and physical health benefits. Many seniors today are providing their time to nonprofits in the form of volunteerism. According to the Corporation for National & Community Service, 20.7 Million older adults contributed more than 3.3 billion hours of service to their communities over the course of a year. This contribution of service equates to over $75 billion dollars. Talk about value!
When seniors were asked why they volunteered, in a study conducted by Home Instead Senior Care, the most common responses were:
- To provide assistance to causes they care about (99%)
- To make a meaningful difference in their community (99%)
- To help others (99%)
Nonprofits today need to do what they can to reach, retain, and engage senior volunteers in their communities. Doing so can create brand ambassadors and provide organizations a big leap towards mission attainment. Implementing volunteer management tools is not just meant for nonprofits wanting to reach tech-savvy senior volunteers. There are also several key recruitment and retention benefits of volunteer management software that can help manage non-tech savvy seniors.
Here are a few ways volunteer management tools can help reach senior volunteers.
Volunteer Management Tools Provide Volunteer Coordinators with Additional Communication Capabilities
The old saying “communication is key” applies greatly when it comes to reaching senior volunteers. Seniors are the fastest growing demographic on the internet according to recent research. A study by Braun Research found that 54% of those 65 and older are comfortable using technology and this number is climbing steadily each year. Volunteer management tools can help nonprofits reach both seniors who are comfortable with technology and those who are not.
Here are some use cases for using volunteer management software to communicate with both types categories:
The use case for tech-savvy seniors
Volunteer management software makes it possible for senior volunteers to register, sign-up, and commit to opportunities directly from their computer. Nonprofits can post new opportunities and communicate these opportunities via email, text, and social media notifications. Many seniors are becoming more comfortable with using social media, text, and email as a communication source.
Here are a few stats to back up our claim:
According to Pew Research Center, internet use for seniors is growing at a rate of 150% per year. 34% of seniors are currently using social media as a part of their online activities.
According to a Simmons National Consumer Study (NCS) 94% of adults 70 years or older are using text messaging on a weekly basis.
Forrester Research found that 91% of online seniors (age 65+) use email regularly.
The use case for non-tech-savvy seniors
Tools to help manage volunteers can also help volunteer coordinators reach senior volunteers who do not use communication tools such as email, text, and social media. Volunteer coordinators can use volunteer management tools to easily enter information for volunteers registering over the phone. The capabilities of volunteer management solutions allow supporters the flexibility of registering for volunteer opportunities in a way they are comfortable doing so.
Volunteer Management Tools Allow Volunteer Coordinators to Focus on Personal Relationships
Relationship building is one of the primary reasons that seniors volunteer. Many are looking to help the community and build friendships at the same time. Today’s seniors come from a generation in which face to face interaction was the primary means of communication, and they value this type of interaction.
Deploying volunteer management tools allow many organizations to focus time-saved on building personal relationships with volunteers instead of data-entry and manual recruitment tasks. Automation both saves time and limits the number of errors that a manual system is prone to.
One of our most recent case studies showed that some organizations are saving hundreds of hours a year and investing those hours into strengthening relationships both internally and externally.
Final Thoughts About Senior Volunteers and Management Tools
It is often perceived that online volunteer database and registration tools only appeal to nonprofits wanting to reach tech-savvy volunteers who are comfortable using online sources. The truth of the matter is that volunteer management software creates opportunities to appeal to both tech-savvy volunteers and volunteers that require a one on one offline registration process. A volunteer management solution can free up the time necessary to focus on building volunteer relationships that last a lifetime.
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