Finders Keepers is a consultancy that assists organisations with all their volunteering needs – from introducing a volunteering programme to helping make an existing one more effective.
We can offer support on any level; from a bit of advice right up to strategy writing. From the creation of recruitment methods (application forms etc.) to the actual recruitment of volunteers.
We operate on an ad-hoc basis therefore we’re there when you need us and not when you don’t – meaning that we can be utilised instead of or in addition to a permanent volunteer coordinator or manager. Lots of larger organisations realise the benefits of a permanent – often full-time – member of staff who is dedicated to the recruitment and retention of volunteers. Many smaller organisations don’t have the resources to recruit someone in this capacity; Finders Keepers is the perfect solution in this circumstance.
Our services are chargeable – that’s how we fund ourselves – but rates are very reasonable and our involvement results in you having a team of people who will not only save you money but can also help to raise it. Organisations can either recruit us on a retainer agreement for a set amount of hours per month or pay us at an hourly rate for a minimum of one hour.
Finders Keepers was initially set up because of our belief that effective volunteers can help organisations be sustainable.
Views on utilising volunteer support tend to vary from ‘It’s more hassle than it’s worth’ to ‘It’s easy’. Inevitably it’s somewhere in between and Finders Keepers has a wealth of knowledge and experience that can alleviate the ‘hassle’ and make it as easy as possible for you and your organisation.
Whatever your venture, volunteers can support you in many ways. Volunteers can help with practical tasks, such as administration or IT or any practical tasks specific to your organisation. They can also help to raise awareness; could you benefit from a team of volunteers to deliver presentations about your work? To help distribute flyers and posters advertising your services or an event you are running? Not only do volunteers save you money, they can also fundraise. Perhaps a volunteer could research funding streams and grants available to your organisation? Perhaps they can run fundraising events?
Finders Keepers can help with anything relating to volunteering.
You can either come to us with a list of what you need, or you can let us work it out through discussions with you. It really is very flexible and we acknowledge and appreciate that all organisations are unique. Finders Keepers tailor support to the organisations we work with rather than having a generic approach.
You can! Finders Keepers was created because what goes into recruiting and retaining volunteers is often under-estimated. Once you start looking into utilising support from volunteers it can be a bit overwhelming!
How will you find time to respond to everyone? What if you struggle to find people? How will you remember every applicant? How will you record their details? How will you assess capabilities? How will you motivate them? What if you reach an issue? What responsibility do you have for these people? How do you know these people are representing your organisation appropriately and positively?
It’s worth thinking about all of these elements because the value volunteers can bring to your organisation is massive, but it will need an investment of time on your part (or our part!). It’s not often as easy as inviting people to support you and reaping the benefits of that support. Volunteers have personal objectives that are individual to them and fulfilling these will ensure you get the best out of them.
By all means recruit a team of volunteers yourself; Finders Keepers is only a phone call away if you need any help along the way.
Finders Keepers have many years experience of working with volunteers; Elle Fletcher has managed and coordinated volunteers across three very different organisations. She created Finders Keepers due to coming into contact with many individuals who’d set up ventures that they were struggling to make sustainable. Elle feels volunteers are the answer to this problem but appreciates that most people who set up their own ventures don’t have the time to dedicate to creating an effective volunteering programme. Whilst this problem did create a business opportunity, Elle has worked in not-for-profit organisations for the majority of her career and has a genuine desire to use her skills to help people. Elle is extremely passionate about volunteering and has built up a great reputation throughout her volunteer management roles. She takes great pride in her work and there’s not much she doesn’t know about volunteering.
We will carry out most work remotely from our office in Pool, Cornwall. However, if you have premises it will be beneficial for us to attend these premises on occasion, to touch base with you and to help us get a feel for your organisation. It will also provide the opportunity for you to assess progress. If you don’t have premises we can have catch up meetings anywhere that’s convenient for you.
Volunteers won’t stick around for long if you just ask them to do everything you don’t want to do. Volunteering must be a mutually beneficial arrangement. Why would someone keep giving their time to something without getting anything back? For example, perhaps you want to send out a big mail-shot and would like a team of volunteers to help you stuff envelopes. How would you entice people who aren’t already involved with your organisation to carry out such a task? Whereas if you recruit a team of volunteers prior to urgently needing their assistance, you can involve them in the organisation and build on their passion for what you do, so that by the time you need help stuffing envelopes they will realise the significance of the task and how it fits in to the bigger picture. They will subsequently be more inclined to help with the more monotonous and time consuming tasks. Volunteers are not numbers or bums on seats; the best way to consider what they can and can’t do is to consider what you would or wouldn’t do!
There are two options:
1) You can pay Finders Keepers an hourly rate for ad-hoc support. You can choose which of the elements outlined in our quotation that you would like Finders Keepers to undertake and in what order. We can agree timescales in accordance with what you want to pay and when.
2) You can enter a retainer agreement with Finders Keepers whereby we dedicate a set number of hours to your organisation each month, for a minimum of three months. The advantages of this arrangement are:
i) Retainers are charged at 20% less than an ad-hoc hourly rate
ii) Work for organisations who have retainer agreements with Finders Keepers takes priority over ad-hoc work
iii) A set monthly retainer fee makes it easier for organisations to budget
There is nothing to pay until work starts therefore you have nothing to lose by discussing your requirements with us. During our meeting we will discuss the option of receiving support from Finders Keepers on a retained basis or as ad-hoc support – payable at an hourly rate.
Following this meeting, Finders Keepers will provide a no-obligation quotation based on an assessment of your needs and will quote for both ad-hoc and retainer options. For more substantial work we will recommend a retainer for the reasons outlined under ‘How do we pay Finders Keepers for the work they do for us?’.
It is impossible to say how much support from Finders Keepers will cost you; it entirely depends on your requirements and there are so many variables. Some organisations may require a quick bit of advice and some may require the set up of an entire volunteering programme. We believe you’ll be pleasantly surprised by our costings.
Is your task really a one-off or could you benefit from having a volunteer or a team of volunteers to undertake ‘one-off’ tasks as they arise?
Volunteers contribute their time to causes they feel passionate about; perhaps because it will boost their career, perhaps they have an affiliation with the cause, or for a multitude of other reasons. Therefore Finders Keepers recruit to roles within organisations – we don’t have a bank of volunteers we can source out to one-off tasks.
Not directly. Finders Keepers doesn’t have a bank of volunteers because we recruit volunteers specifically for organisations we work with. We target our advertising depending on the nature of the organisation and the role, which means we attract volunteers with relevant interests and skills and volunteers apply for roles that appeal to their interests and utilise their skills.
Finders Keepers welcome enquiries from anyone considering volunteer support. We primarily work with not-for-profit organisations or social enterprises (businesses that trade for a social and/or environmental purpose). Finders Keepers was set up to assist organisations to be sustainable through volunteer support therefore we are all about sustainability rather than profit. However, we assess each request on its individual merit and welcome any questions, so please do get in touch to see if we can help you.
Please telephone Elle Fletcher on 07811 461860 or email email@example.com
Finders Keepers is a consultancy. We operate on an ad-hoc basis and organisations pay us either at an hourly rate for a minimum of just one hour's work, or they can enter into a retainer agreement with us whereby we guarantee them a set number of hours support per month.
Please visit our Frequently Asked Questions page for more information.