Additionally, premium features, including advanced rota system and volunteer team online meeting spaces will be available for an additional monthly cost of est. £25.
Volunteer Makers Enterprise System Following the release of the cloud-based Volunteer Makers API (Application Programming Interface), we can create an Enterprise System for museums that would enable museums to deliver Volunteer Makers functionality through either an existing web platform or a stand-alone website. API technology enables Volunteer Makers to interact with other compatible programmes e.g. Your own website.
This allows full customisation of the system to your design specifications, with the Volunteer Makers platform fully embedded in your web platforms. Costs for an Enterprise are subject to the system specification.
Question 4: If I use a Volunteer Makers model, increasing my volunteer base, doesn’t that ultimately mean the loss of museum jobs?
We have found that when museums grow their volunteer base with a Volunteer Makers model they are also increasing visitors to the museum, events, café and shop etc.
This equates to actual income and can also create opportunities for match funding as you are developing and you building your audience. In our experience Volunteer Makers sustains jobs, rather than replaces jobs.
The types of activity bringing in larger numbers of supporters are not the same as full or part-time jobs, often the activity can be done away from the museum using digital.
Digital micro-volunteering is known to attract younger volunteers, which we know is important to museums’ long term sustainability and meeting targets to diversity their audience.
Question 5: Volunteer Makers is a national programme, what does that involve? Is the programme free for Museums?
Our Arts Council England supported Volunteer Makers programme is running from October 2016 to March 2018 for Museums based England. We are holding 8 regional seminars to demonstrate the ideas of the Volunteer Makers Model and show how digital technology can drive it.
The seminars are usually around 3 hours, they are free to attend and they cover the following areas: Seminar topics: – Introduction to Volunteer Makers model and technology – Developing an effective organisation-wide approach to engaging volunteers – The long tail – how to target hard to reach volunteers – Beyond volunteering – how everyone who connects to you can become a volunteer – Value exchange – how to get the next generation of volunteers on your side – Different voices – increasing diversity in your supporter base – Get connected – how technology can increase engagement – The role of digital with engaging volunteers
Following the seminars, we will be working directly with 30 accredited museums (from April 2017 to March 2018) to provide practical support in understanding the Volunteer Makers engagement model. This can include using our Volunteer Makers technology as well, if desired. Our training encourages an organisation-wide approach to strategy and delivery of volunteer engagement and growing volunteers, including those involved in your organisation in the following areas:
- Volunteer Managers
Your whole organisation needs to be involved in the Volunteer Makers engagement model. Those involved in digital deliver this model via digital platforms (e-mail, social media, e-marketing), while marketing promotes the opportunities available. Leadership and finance functions of your organisation help drive the ideas against a financial criterion, while learning and curators / creatives provide the voice and core offer of the museum that inspires and encourages your audience.
Volunteers are people who are supporting your museum and an integral part of your audience and of your museum community, able to contribute to all areas of operation. Our workshop training is tailored to support the museums we are working with and covers:
- An organisation-wide overview of Volunteer Makers
- How to make a step-change with engaging your volunteers through Volunteer Makers
- Planning Volunteer Makers – strategy and delivery: Setting goals, Targeting volunteers, Integrating with marketing communications and digital platforms, Planning resource to manage a Volunteer Makers model
- Setting up and using Volunteer Makers – the platform
- Evaluating Volunteer Makers
Question 6: Does Volunteer Makers work better for larger museums than smaller museums?
We have been working with many types of museums, including larger (national) and smaller museums, local authority-led, independent and volunteer-led. Volunteer Makers works for all these museums. Smaller museums have dedicated people who cover many functions in the museums, this can sometimes be a benefit when adopting an organisation-wide approach.
Our Volunteer Makers pioneer programme, which is working alongside the Arts Council England funded programme, is testing the platform with larger and smaller museums. This will allow us to assess if there is any difference with museums depending on their size. Volunteer Makers is an efficient way of managing, growing and engaging volunteers and has been shown to work well with organisations who are have resource limitations. Question 7: How does Volunteer Makers tie in with Museum Accreditation.
Volunteer Makers helps museums work in ways that meet several of the requirements of Arts Council England’s Accreditation Scheme for museums.
1.4 Forward Planning: the Volunteer Makers platform allows museums to record volunteer input (hours, activity and value) at the museum consistently and accurately – essential data to include in the review of your museum’s operating environment. The Volunteer Makers model supports the recruitment of volunteers to carry out the activities set out in the Forward Plan. It encourages the museum to identify the skills needed and activities involved in delivering its objectives and to break them down into ‘challenges’ which volunteers can sign up to.
1.7 An appropriate workforce: The Volunteer Makers platform gives museums accurate data on the numbers of volunteers they have, the hours they work and the value of their input. By encouraging an organisation-wide approach the model helps museums identify skills gaps and improve recruitment, induction and training.
3.1 Users: through the systematic gathering of information on the people who volunteer for it Volunteer Makers model and platform provides the museum with great data on its users and helps museums devise plans to increase and diversify volunteer involvement through re-energised and targeted volunteer recruitment. Do you have a question for us? Please e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org.