Mar 5, 2014
In today's world, people are always on the go. It has become more difficult to both get someone's full attention and retain it for more than 30 seconds at a time. Fortunately for nonprofits, this type of behavior fits the mold of a new type of volunteering. Micro-volunteering is described as short-term, easy tasks that can be completed almost anywhere that has internet access, according to industry website Help From Home.
Listed below are three reasons why nonprofits should embrace micro-volunteering:
1. Power to the people: Individuals like doing things on their own time because it makes them feel in control of their lives. For example, it can be argued that Netflix has seen recent success because it gives users the option to watch as much - or as little - of a given television show or movie as they want in one sitting. Micro-volunteering is predicated on a similar ideology in that donors can volunteer as much or as little time as they choose - and can often do it through online donation services. The quick and easy nature of micro-volunteering can fit around most anyone's schedule, no matter how busy they claim to be.
2. Unique recruitment tool: According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, volunteering dropped just over one percentage point to 25.4 percent in 2013 . The decline isn't catastrophic, but in order to avoid it becoming a trend, nonprofits should leverage any and all ways possible to recruit more volunteers, The Guardian suggests. Not only are you empowering your volunteers through micro-volunteering, you're also able to highlight the lack of stress or commitment volunteers have to put in. Chances are, if people don't have to fully commit to a cause right away, they're more likely to get involved at rates they're comfortable with and grow from there.
3. Almost anyone can do it: Nearly everyone can volunteer at a physical location, but with the help of the Internet, micro-volunteering's reach is much greater than traditional means. Plus, technologically based giving expands the opportunities for charities to ask for help more than just one location. For example, a volunteer can write a card to a sick child in a hospital three hundred miles away. Also, a benefactor could utilize a nonprofit's donation software to support a cause to save the Amazonian rainforest in South America from his or her couch on a different continent.