Some of you may have seen that June was Motor Neurone Disease Awareness month, with events and fundraisers taking place up and down the country to raise money and awareness. 

Hireserve has supported the Motor Neurone Disease (MND) Association for many years by donating our recruitment software. The Association uses this to streamline its volunteer recruitment, from aiding candidate engagement to processing applications more efficiently.

We spoke to the MND Association for an update on its volunteer recruitment activity last summer (when the phrase ‘Ice Bucket Challenge’ would have prompted a confused ‘eh?’ if you asked someone in the street). You can read the full case study here, but we’ve included a couple of highlights below:

‘…Historically, volunteers for the MND Association began helping due to a personal connection to the disease.

A key change in recent years has been the creation of challenging and innovative new roles, which have encouraged applications from a far bigger pool of talent and experience.  There are a range of new positions, from specific pilot projects, to roles that can be fitted in around work on an ad-hoc basis, like a regional Website Editor.

Another positive step has been the use of Hireserve’s Facebook app, which allows volunteers to instantly apply via social media. The Facebook page attracts high engagement from people. Claire Ayling, Volunteering Information Coordinator, comments:

“Facebook has been a hugely useful resource for us to raise awareness of the Association and build relationships with people – so it made sense for us to utilise it for our volunteer recruitment. It’s also made it easier to target a younger and new audience, and we really recognise the value in that.”

The Association’s strategy is focused on three pillars: care, research and campaigning. It believes that volunteers can make a huge difference in delivering this. Candidate engagement plays a key role; the Facebook app has allowed candidates to apply instantly via social or the website, and the reduced hours of paperwork have meant the Volunteering team have more time to spend building relationships with volunteers to create a positive application process.

To promote its investment in volunteering, the MND Association is working towards an accreditation which will formally recognise its commitment to volunteer training, development and support.’

(August 2014)

We were delighted to read today, on the NCVO blog, that the MND Association has now been awarded the ‘Investing in Volunteers’ accreditation. This really highlights the Association’s commitment to volunteers and belief in their importance.

As Volunteers Week highlighted, the benefits of volunteering are far reaching for individuals and organisations. Charities and not-for-profit organisations can benefit from exceptional skill and experience, such as the copywriter who offers to produce the quarterly newsletter, or the weekly volunteer dog walker, who simply brings bags of enthusiasm and dedication along with them.

Securing this skill can be challenging, particularly for smaller or lesser known organisations, who don’t have the same visibility as their larger counterparts.

Building a relationship with potential volunteers is an essential step, whether that’s via social media or at a fundraising drive. This then needs to be followed by a secure, simple and fast application process, so that candidates feel valued and don’t lose heart during lengthy email exchanges or clunky documents.

To help, we’ve put together a short guide all about Third Sector Recruitment for you to download today.

On a personal note, the MND Association is a cause very close to our hearts. We’re delighted to continue supporting them with our recruitment software, and are so pleased their investment in volunteering has now been formally recognised.

Find out more:

Wondered what lies beyond the ice bucket challenge?

Interested to find out what the MND Association spoke about at the Hireserve User Group?

Keen to meet more about our third sector customers?

Or simply fancy a chat about your volunteer or staff recruitment challenges? Talk to us today.

About the author

Tristan Potter

Tristan has a decade's worth of experience writing content and copy for organisations across Bristol and the Southwest of England. He has written on a diverse range of topics, including technology, philosophy, politics, and recruitment. His writing has appeared in The Drum, HR Grapevine, and The Guardian, among other publications. He joined Hireserve in March 2022.