Mission Inn Foundation
Paul Bricker and the Mission Inn Foundation awarded Volunteer Scheduler Pro the "Overly Efficient Award" as a thanks for how helpful VSP proved to be during their busy holiday season. We followed up with Paul to learn more about how VSP has made a difference at the Mission Inn Foundation.
Samantha: What is the Mission Inn Foundation?
Paul: We are a nonprofit associated with the historic Mission Inn hotel. Our volunteers staff the museum and give tours. Our insane part of the year is the Festival of Lights. It's a big deal. We had over 8,000 visitors during that period this year [and gave] 421 tours using 1,360 hours of volunteer time. This stuff changes fast, and it's incredibly dynamic.
Samantha: How was the volunteer scheduling done prior to using Volunteer Scheduler Pro?
Paul: You called up Robin, our lady who was doing the schedule. Her phone would ring at all sorts of weird hours with people wanting to be put on the schedule. Not only was this time consuming for her, but people really felt like they were imposing on her. It didn't fit with people's schedules.
Samantha: What would you say are the biggest benefits of using VSP to your organization?
Paul: Volunteers like it. We love volunteers, they do great stuff, [and] they got into doing this because they were personally interested. But it doesn't take very long for a volunteer to get to thinking, "You know, I'm not loved and appreciated as much as I should be." The fact that volunteers wanted [a program like this] and now it's here - they like the fact that they were heard. Secondly, it has made it easier to keep up with the schedule and [alert us] that we're going to need a lot more volunteers.
Samantha: Since starting to use VSP, how has that process changed?
Paul: Now we let people sign up online for shifts. They like it better. We want to give everybody the opportunity to schedule the times that they want... People really liked the idea that if they're watching TV in the middle of the night, they can go OH! And they can walk up to the computer, fire up the Web Terminal and get it done.
Samantha: How do you use VSP's Emailer?
Paul: I use the Emailer often and for a bunch of things. We've got a message that goes out that says we've still got positions that need to be filled, and that has been very effective. The fact that people can just click right in the email to fill it... those spots get filled pretty quickly.
Samantha: What has your volunteers' reaction been to using the Web Terminal to sign up for shifts and request subs?
Paul: They love it! We got a lot of very positive feedback. When we first rolled it out... one of our volunteers, we tease her, but she was just certain that through the process of using the Web Terminal, she was going to ruin Western civilization. She just knew she was going to break something. We just had to reassure her that she wasn't going to hurt anything. She's very happy with it now!
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