Learning By Our Mistakes
Mistakes in modern-day culture are often seen as shameful and are therefore hidden away. Yet we all make mistakes and we all learn from them.
We therefore want to challenge this convention and create an online document of what problems Verify Humanity have encountered and how we have learned from them.
DATE PROBLEM SOLUTION
Sep 2020 To recruit volunteers we had a low We researched what attracted people to pressure approach as we realised volunteering but also what barriers existed. there are many barriers that might This helped develop an evidence-based
put people off. This worked with understanding of how to recruit and
some volunteers but not others. keep volunteers.
Nov 2020 We connected with many Facebook We created a document of our 150 Facebook
groups in order to share VH posts. Groups, putting them into categories and
It was impossible to keep track of listing their rules and objectives. It can be
their objectives and rules when post- used as a point of reference when sharing
ing, leading to a few disgruntled posts to these groups. There have been no
comments about our posts from negative comments since using this system.
members of these groups.
Jan 2021 We lost track of potential, live and We have created a colour coded spread-
completed volunteer jobs over the sheet to detail potential, live and Christmas holidays which meant completed jobs. This is keeping our
tracing multiple communication work-flow highly organised and efficient
sources to get back on top of it. with no jobs getting overlooked.
Feb 2021 The available work force is not A re-evaluation of our priorities has led to
keeping pace with the growing a focus on bringing in volunteers. The book
work-load, putting enormous entitled '365 Ideas for Recruiting, Retaining
pressure on the shoulders of a Motivating and Rewarding Your Volunteers'
few. has been pivotal for improving our skills in
We now have a dedicated volunteer section
on our website and a welcome flow-chart
process that includes a personal phone call from our founder, application forms, contracts, policies and a detailed induction
for all new volunteers.
2021 A plan to focus on building up our While it is fine to have some volunteers who
volunteer section has been more take on less than 5 hours a week, we now only
successful than planned but this has take on volunteers who can commit for a min of
had unintended consequences. While 6 months, and if they are working for the Volunteer
we have drawn in a high standard of Management Team, we ask for 15 hours a week to
volunteers, their work hours have been provide stability. While we felt this was a big ask,
low. With a recruitment and it has been successful.
training process that takes at least a
month, this has meant the work they
do is not long enough to justify
the input. Particularly if volunteers
stay 4 months.
May 2021 With the growing success of the There is no quick solution to this problem without losing the Mar 2022 Volunteer Section, the work load on amazing strides achieved in the last 9 months. The
the founder has become enormous. decision to seek Volunteers who can do longer hours
Most work days are 12-15 hours long, is part of the solution.
with approx 3 hours off a week. With The Founder is also creating new roles within the organisation
a one week holiday in Oct 2021 with to alleviate the pressure, but it's likely in the early years
her family. This is clearly not that the she will be needed elsewhere.
Feb 2022 During a Recruitment Drive, a volunteer The two volunteers involved were informed immediately and
applicant had access to another an ICO report completed within the 72 hour time-frame.
volunteer's personal data. While it was While the ICO "decided not to take action," we have added
discovered very quickly due to the system a step to our Application Tracker to double-check the sharing
in place and no data breach happened, status of volunteer ID folders to ensure no mistakes have
it was concerning. happened.
Ideally we will share the documents in a folder and not the
folder itself. This prevents anyone having access to
documents that are later added to a folder.