I am sitting with my coffee early Saturday morning reading The NonProfitTimes when I came across Susan J. Ellis, President of Energize Inc., article titled “The Organizational Chart: Decisions on Where Volunteer Engagement Belongs.”
This article got me thinking about my title – Volunteer and Communications Director and where I am “housed”. In my 13 years in the field, I have maybe come across someone with my same title once or twice. I have a dual role, so I report to our Communications Officer and to our Chief Operating Officer.
In the article Susan talks about the benefits and challenges of reporting to marketing and public relations staff, human resources, placed within the executive offices or as an independent volunteer resource department.
There is no perfect placement for what we do, to show the value an organization places on the volunteer resource manager. From reading her article, I think it comes down to what makes sense for your organization based on your size and talents of your team.
For me, the dual title, can be challenging at times, but it makes sense and I am surprised more organizations, especially smaller non profits aren’t doing the same thing. Where do you find your stories to share with the community? Who are the people most passionate to tell the story? Who can provide you valuable information about programs and services being delivered in the community? VOLUNTEERS!!
I see communications and volunteer management going hand-in-hand. By telling the story of our volunteers and what they do in the community, I am helping recruit new volunteers and increasing retention and recognition by valuing the great work being done by our volunteer workforce.
I would love to hear the opinion of other volunteer managers. Where are you “housed”? What are your thoughts on a dual role?