May 17, 2013
The day-to-day for a nonprofit is busy, to say the least. Keeping track of volunteers and their hours, information, and participation history is time-consuming and often falls to the bottom of the agenda.
But Andrew Stanley and Venkat Dulipalli – the good Samaritans that they are – decided to take this problem head-on. VolunteerMark was designed specifically to help nonprofits manage their time better.
“When I first got involved with volunteer work, people would keep track of hours by hand or in an Excel spreadsheet, and it was problematic,” says Stanley. “I wanted to improve the communications of it all.”
The team recognized that most of the nonprofits out there simply do not have a good system of management in place. Stanley and Dulipalli, however, are aiming to be the go-to system for nonprofits by centralizing everything they need.
All relevant user data is compiled for nonprofits to access through VolunteerMark. Volunteers’ contact information, participation history, and internal notes are readily available.
This ensures that time spent combing databases, tracking down volunteers, and reporting service hours, on the part of the nonprofit, is heavily reduced. Nonprofits, free from the administrative burden, can then focus on furthering their missions and goals.
Users who register with VolunteerMark receive a weekly, personalized email that offers volunteer opportunities specific to their skills and interests. From within the platform, they can sign up for any of these opportunities and log their hours after they finish an assignment.
After a user logs their service hours, the nonprofit must go into VolunteerMark and follow up. That is, they verify that the volunteer worked the specified hours and either approve or deny them.
This incentivizes volunteering for the users, as they can download and print official certifications of completed time. For example, users who may have school requirements, court mandated service, or corporate social responsibilities can list their certificates on resumes or use them to garner recognition.
“The last thing volunteers want is to log in to a site only to do hours of extra work,” explains Stanley. “We want everything to be very quick and easy and on their terms.”
Volunteering is always a good thing, but it is not always an easy thing. Making life easier for nonprofits in turn makes life easier for those who volunteer. Easier lives for volunteers make projects go smoothly, and that leads to a net good that is reinvested in the community.
“We will be the reputable service that people trust, recognize, and get involved with,” finishes a determined Stanley.
VolunteerMark was featured at Tech Cocktail’s Kansas City Mixer & Startup Showcase on May 7th.
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