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  • In the NT the overall numbers continually rising but the number of our 'regular' volunteers (Room Guides, Gardeners etc) that our operating model relies on has been static for many years and is even possibly falling
  • Start by setting scene/context for this session You all know Exec signed off a ten year ambition for volunteering at the end of 2011 and over the past we have been doing a lot of work sharing that – some of you will have seen presentations where we have talked part of what underpins the ambition is the evidence that there is a massive untapped pool of resources in potential volunteers. Our insight research has shown that 27million people are interested in volunteering for the Trust – if asked / made aware of or if we developed new proposiitions in line with their motivations Similarly within our existing volunteers 41% felt there could be more opportunity to do new things and take on new responsibilities
  • Crucially the volunteering ambition is not something separate or stand alone – it’s part of how we’ll achieve our overall Trust aim: that everyone feels like a member and by 2020 five million are That’s an ambitious organisational growth strategy and the volunteering ambition is absolutely set in that context: one way of helping us achieve that Trust ambition: we’ll need more people to help us do the work and there is a significant pool of untapped volunteer resource out there in our existing and future volunteers. And equally important involving more volunteers is a key way in which we’ll grow our supporter base – helping those new volunteers feel like members too What the session Rob will run through focusses on is some of the challenges we’ll face in accessing that pool – and we’ll work together today to think about how the Trust responds to those challenges
  • So – in summary – and you all know this stuff already: The 2020 ambition is summarised in two sentences: Vols involved in every aspect of our work All staff confident and capable of working with vols And in the short term we obviously also have the KPI target: we haven’t met it this year nationally but we’ve made really significant progress and we’ll talk more about the KPI later in this session VR remains a priority KPI next year too So – a long term ambition and short term target
  • To achieve the strategy – and again, this is stuff you will have seen before – we have three strands of work: Building the capability and confidence of vol managers (paid or unpaid) Investing in the systems and processes that will save those managers time and ensure a better quality experience for vols: systems and processes not as an end in themselves but to enable vol managers and vols Developing new ways for people to get involved – evidence tells us our traditional offer won’t be fit for purpose in future
  • And – you’ve seen this before too – we’re weighting how we focus our time on those three strands of work over the ten years of the ambition Up front investment in getting the basics right – and I know this was reflected in the 121 sessions you had with Jennie and Benita and then moving to focus more on developing new ways to get involved And that’s why the KPI matters: the KPI is a good measure of whether we’re getting the basics right – it’s an effective way of tracking our progress in the first of these three phases So… what does all of that mean for today? A few things: As strategic leaders you need to have a greater understanding of the long term challenges facing volunteering so you can support your teams to develop an appropriate plan for volunteering at your property. This session isn’t about the nuts and bolts of vol management as we recognise you rarely do that personally, it’s much more about the big picture, longer term challenges that you as strategic leaders need to be able to respond to With both systems and processes and the capability work we know that if all we do is create vol managers and systems that support the way we do volunteering now we will have failed – we need to do both of those things in a way that means we’re fit for the future and this session is about helping you understand that future and working together on how to respond It’s also about supporting you to provide good support for your local vol managers – one of the key pieces of feedback from the Convestival was that the HoDs and more junior staff who were there felt their P/GMs needed to know more about what’s happening in volunteering in order to be able to set a clear direction. They were asking for your help and these sessions are in part a way of supporting you to provide that help Similarly ADOs asked us to pull these sessions together – and they had a similar one – as there was a recognition that for many senior operational staff the world of volunteering is one they are less familiar with
  • Target in 2013 is currently 68% Missed the target this year – reached 63% - but great progress: increase of 4% when in all previous years the score has been static or just 1% increase Message is good progress, well done and Thank You, but can’t be complacent when look at target for next year
  • Indicative timings – subject to change Bridging The Gap = 2 hrs
  • 668,000 people are employed in the voluntary sector. Informal volunteering saw a sharp drop in 2009-10 (-13% for one a year and -5% for once a month) according to the Citizenship survey. We don’t know why and are unlikely to see if this was a blip as the survey has been cut by the coalition government.
  • Cause association is strong with National Trust volunteers – links to brand. Cause association often about place more than organisation. 40% of National Trust volunteers say they would like to Trust utilise their skills better. Skills audits can help with this but a big spreadsheet is not the only answer. Relationship building is also really important .
  • Tom McKee’s reasons people stop volunteering Number 7: No flexibility in volunteer opportunities or scheduling Number 6: Too much wasted time in useless or unproductive meetings Number 5: Lack of communication Number 4: Lack of professionalism Number 3: The feeling that the volunteer is not really making a difference Number 2: No feedback from leadership about how the volunteer is doing Number 1 reason: The volunteer manager who doesn't know how to lead DISCUSSION – WHAT IS THE IMPLICATION FOR National Trust?
  • Volunteer Rights Inquiry – volunteer management has become all about what volunteers can’t do not what volunteers can do
  • Wally Harbert film Forecast based on the Government Actuary's Department principal projection Between 2010 and 2015 there will arrive an extra 731,000 people in the 66-71 age bracket – an increase of 22% on current levels – presents an enormous opportunity or challenge. Similar opportunities will exist for brands serving the late middle-age market ( an extra 935,000 48-59 year olds projected over the same timeframe ); more young adults ( an extra 1,053,000 23-36 year olds ) and more under-12s (an extra 517,000 – so long as current fertility rates hold - also indicate the changing shape of the demographic opportunity. Age brackets which will see a decrease include teenagers and youths ( 547,000 fewer 12-22 year olds ) and those in early middle age ( 855,000 fewer 37-46 year olds ). >>>>> Increasing number of volunteers will have held powerful roles in business and industry and therefore it can be quite intimidating for less experienced (often younger) managers. It is important that culturally and individual we learn to Trust ourselves to work with higher skilled / more experienced people.
  • We may have choice but perception is that we don’t have a variety of offers for potential vols,.
  • In 2010, 30.1 million adults in the UK (60 per cent) accessed the Internet every day or almost every day. This is nearly double the estimate in 2006 of 16.5 million. Social networking was also a popular Internet activity in 2010, with 43 per cent of Internet users posting messages to social networking sites or chat sites, blogs etc. Social networking is not limited to young adults, with 31 per cent of Internet users aged 45 to 54 having used the Internet to post messages, while 28 per cent uploaded content.
  • ME – Discussion – Is this our ‘Burning Platform’ or not? This is where we should relate the theory you have introduced back to our Vision for Volunteering
  • 2020 vision Volunteers involved in every aspect of our work All staff confident and capable of working with vols
  • Published earlier this year, Bridging the Gap combines a literature review of volunteering globally with primary research in Canada to help understand: What people are looking for in volunteering How orgs are engaging volunteers What steps we can take to ‘bridge the gap’ The research specifically looked at four groups – Young people, employer supported volunteers, families, baby boomers. We will look at the more general findings. I will build on these with my own reflections and some UK data.
  • Four areas we will focus on today
  • We’ve always known the if you want something done you ask a busy person. We’ve known that this trend has been increasing – between the 1991 and 1997 National Survey’s of Volunteering there was an increase in the number of hours given but a decrease in the number of people volunteering. We also know from successive citizenship surveys that levels of formal volunteering have not changed much in the last ten years. So we, like Canada, are very reliant on a small number of people for the volunteering currently undertaken. Given the traditional volunteer is older (i.e. civics generation) we are already seeing a decline in their levels of volunteering due to age, ill health and death. We need to do something about this rather than replying on those we’ve always relied on.
  • By far the most common reason for stopping volunteering was time, and particularly a lack of time due to changing home or work circumstances, identified by 41% of respondents. Time was also one of the key reasons identified for stopping volunteering in the 1997 National Survey of Volunteering. The second, third and fourth most commonly identified reasons for stopping volunteering in the current study were, respectively: because the activity was no longer relevant health problems or old age moving away from the area The data re non-volunteers wanting to volunteers is all non-volunteers (ex-volunteers and never volunteered) not just past volunteers. Do you know why your past volunteers stopped? Can you contact them to find out if & why they might support you again? >>>>> Point about we may have 67k volunteers but with 4m members there are opportunities to engage with far more who are already supporting the org in other ways
  • People want group activities but there are few on offer People come with skills but don’t always want to use them We have clearly defined roles but volunteers want to shape their own roles We want long-term volunteers but people want shorter term, flexible ways to engage We focus on our needs but volunteers have their own goals “ A desire to make and/or embed social connections, meet new people and combat isolation or loneliness led many people to get involved in a collective activity. The human desire to be with others in a joint endeavour, and the strength and quality of the relationships between fellow participants that grow through belonging to a group, came through vividly in our research .” Pathways Through Participation As the management of volunteering has become more formalised, especially with the development of more HR like approaches to volunteer management, so role descriptions etc. have become more commonplace. But Bridging The Gap found that people wanted to shape their roles around their own skills, experience and interests. As we’ve seen, we’re still reliant on the tradition, busy person uber-volunteer. But people want more short term, episodic, even micro opportunities to engage. “ Almost everyone we spoke to had experienced some degree of fluctuation in the levels of intensity and frequency of their involvement, depending on what was happening in their lives. Participation was characterised by ebbs and flows, starts and stops, a mix of one-offs, short- and long-term commitments…” Pathways Through Participation Marketing of volunteer programmes stands out in that it is almost always based on what we need not how the potential volunteer will benefit. Room guides?
  • Volunteered together Diverse range of skills but activity = clean up Self-determined roles One off task to make a tangible difference Driven by a sense of responsibility for their own community Asking how we engage these people in long term volunteering is not the right question. We need to ask how we adapt our offer to meet them half way.
  • “ Any attempt to encourage participation must take into account the differing and multiple motivations people have for becoming and staying involved” Pathways Through Participation Far more socially acceptable that volunteering is about giving and getting – probably always has been of course. Yet most organisations have an inflexible, take it or leave it approach to volunteering – these opportunities at these times etc. People want volunteering to enable them to learn new skills & share their experience with others. Yet we still have large numbers of unskilled volunteering opportunities and roles where we don’t trust volunteers to go about the work in their own way. Time is increasingly precious as we all live more complex and pressured lives. People have to be convinced that they aren’t going to waste their time volunteering with you and that they will make a difference. “ A good quality participation experience was the single most important reason interviewees gave to explain their sustained participation ” and “ people participated in order to specifically achieve something ” Pathways Through Participation Today’s volunteers are different from the duty driven legions of traditional volunteers More mobile – migration etc. Tech savvy Multiple interests and roles Lead complex and busy lives Want two-way relationships Accept change and a variety of choice Like volunteering in groups Like to use their skills and learn new ones
  • The Beijing vs London analogy We need to focus less on creating lots of uniform volunteering that is tightly controlled and orderly and efficient Instead be open to volunteering being more diverse, slightly chaotic, more fun and creative.
  • Link strongly with what National Trust know about drivers for their volunteering KPI (80% recommendation): Be organised Communicate Work as a team and show appreciation Make the most of peoples skills Show clear direction and leadership
  • Second discussion point – think about your experience as a volunteer as well as your experience of working in the sector.
  • Unsalaried credibility Sphere of influence Luxury of focus Free to criticise Experiment Extend the budget Highlight issues around measuring these – not always easy but important, impact on volunteer, organisation and community.
  • Ask what kinds of costs are associated with working with volunteers? Capture these on flipchart.
  • Rate each possible action between 1 & 5 for importance 1 = high importance, 5 = low importance Estimate the amount of time required to complete each action Re-order High priority & little time at the top Low priority and lots of time at the bottom Share with a colleague and hold each other to account!


  • 1. Regional Volunteering Masterclass East of England Westley Bottom 4th December 2012
  • 2. Unlocking the potential:27 million reasons to get better at volunteering
  • 3. Everyone feels like a memberand by 2020 five million will be.
  • 4. Two things…The 2020 ambition: Volunteers in every aspect of our work All staff confident and capable of working with volunteersThe 2012 KPI target: 64% volunteers strongly recommend volunteering with the National Trust
  • 5. Three strands of work:1. Capability and confidence of our volunteer managers2. Fit for purpose supporting systems and processes3. Developing new ways for people to get involved as volunteers
  • 6. 20% New offers New offers 40% Systems New offers & Systems Processes & Processes Systems & Processes 40%Capability Capability Capability & & &Confidence Confidence ConfidenceYears 1 - 3 Years 4 - 6 Years 7 - 9
  • 7. The KPIThe 2012 KPI target: 64% volunteers strongly recommend volunteering with the National Trust
  • 8. Drivers of the KPITo raise the KPI we need to…1. Be organised2. Communicate effectively3. Ensure volunteers feel valued4. Make the most of peoples skills5. Show clear leadership and direction
  • 9. Our session today• 21st Century Volunteering – How volunteering is changing and what organisations need to do to respond• Creating a vision for volunteering at your property – Benefits aand costs associated with involving volunteers• Action planning• Getting support as you move forward• Final Q&A
  • 10. 21st Century volunteering Part one The volunteering landscape
  • 11. Levels of formal volunteering are static Proportion of people volunteering formally 50 40 30% 20 10 0 2001 2003 2005 2007/08 2008/09 2009/10 2010/11 Year At least once a month At least once a year
  • 12. Why people volunteer (%) 70 I wanted to improve things/help people 60 Cause was important 50 to me I had spare time 40 30 Meet people/make friends 20 Use my skills 10 Learn new skills 0Source: Citizenship Survey 2008-09
  • 13. What prevents people volunteering (%) 60 Work commitments 50 Looking after 40 children/home 30 Have other things to do with my spare 20 time Havent hear about 10 opportunities 0 Dont know groups that need helpSource: Citizenship Survey 2008-09
  • 14. Legal Key elements: •Volunteer agreements •Expectations vs. obligations •Expenses and ‘if contracts’ •National Minimum Wage •Interns
  • 15. 21st Century volunteering Part two Volunteering doesn’t exist in a bubble
  • 16. Age structure of the UK1,200 Thousands population 2010 20151,000 2020 800 600 400 200 0 0 5 10 15 20 25 30 35 40 45 50 55 60 65 70 75 80 85 Source: nfpSynergy - Population Projections/National Statistics/nVision Base: UK ; 21774: The New Demographic Landscape
  • 17. Choice• TV channels – When I was a child there were three in the UK• Drinks – Used to be tea or coffee• Supermarkets – Much wider choice of food than 20 years ago – Now sell financial products, clothes, furniture, legal advice
  • 18. The social media revolution
  • 19. Internet use by UK adultsSource: ONS (2010)
  • 20. A one slide summary• The world has changed quite significantly in the last decade (& will do even more in future) but: – Levels of volunteering haven’t – The ways organisations involve volunteers haven’t changed much either (and are largely process driven)
  • 21. National Trust vision for volunteeringThe 2020 ambition: Volunteers in every aspect of our work All staff confident and capable of working with volunteers
  • 22. National Trust vision for volunteering Efficient A flexible offer Build capacityA wider A dynamic offerrange ofactivities A more diverse range ofBuild capability people Consistent Shaping our work, not 80% volunteer just delivering it recommendationA better quality experience
  • 23. The challenge we face• Disconnect (growing?) between what people want from volunteering and what organisations are offering• The need to embrace different approaches to getting and keeping volunteers• We’re competing with anything people can spend their spare time doing
  • 24. Bridging The Gap Part 3What are the gaps and what can we do about them?
  • 25. Bridging the gap• What people are looking for in volunteering• How organisations are engaging volunteers• Actions to ‘bridge the gap’Source: Bridging The Gap (2011)
  • 26. What did they find? • The legacy of the uber volunteers • Potential of past volunteers • Gaps & why they exist • How we can respond
  • 27. The legacy of the uber volunteers • 31% of the adult population provide almost 90% of volunteer hours • 8% of the adult population provide almost half the volunteer hoursSource: Mohan, J – What do volunteering statistics tellus about the prospects for the Big Society? (2010)
  • 28. Potential of past volunteers • UK data – 1 in 5 people had volunteered but weren’t now – Changes in personal circumstances the main reason – 54% of non-volunteers would like to volunteer • Your property?Source: Helping Out (2007)
  • 29. GapsSource: Bridging The Gap (2011)
  • 30. Why these gaps?• Motivations, availabilities and interests change during our lives• Volunteering is a two-way relationship• Skills transfer and development is important• Time is our most valuable resource• In other words, today’s volunteers are different!
  • 31. Less….More….
  • 32. How can we respond?• Re-think how we involve people to achieve our mission• Focus more on what needs doing than on how and when it is done• Be flexible and provide greater choice• Be well organised but not too bureaucratic• Provide opportunities for online engagement• Build meaningful relationships with volunteersSource: Bridging The Gap (2011)
  • 33. “Improving participation opportunities requiresstarting where people are and taking account oftheir concerns and interests, providing a rangeof opportunities and levels of involvement sopeople can feel comfortable with taking part andusing the personal approach to invite andwelcome people in.” Pathways Through Participation
  • 34. Discussion• What has struck you • What actions could be most from this taken at your property session and why? to ‘bridge the gap’?• How do you see • How can you support these trends and your volunteer issues impacting on manager to volunteering with the implement these Trust and specifically actions? your property? • What support do you need?
  • 35. Useful reading/resources• 21st Century Volunteer – nfpSynergy• Bridging the Gap – Volunteer Canada• Participation: trends, facts and figures – NCVO• Helping Out: National Survey of Volunteering and Charitable Giving – Institute for Volunteering Research• Pathways Through Participation – NCVO, Involve and Institute for Volunteering Research
  • 36. Creating a vision forvolunteering at your property?
  • 37. What benefits do volunteers bring to your property?
  • 38. Benefits volunteers bring
  • 39. Volunteers are free, right? Volunteering is freely given but not cost free
  • 40. Creating a vision for volunteering - key points • Know why you involve volunteers • Be clear on the benefits they will being • Understand the costs Link back to • Resource appropriatelyNational Trustvolunteering • Monitor and evaluate vision
  • 41. How to get in touch Email: Phone: 07557 419 074 Web: Twitter: @robjconsultingBlog: