By Todd Adkins
We cannot eliminate uncertainty. In this season of ministry, we can only address what is known. When it comes to the number of volunteers we need and in what positions we need them, there is a fair amount of uncertainty moving forward. As new guidelines and new normals are established in our churches, the ideal number of volunteers we previously needed and the roles in which we needed them has likely changed. Taking into account the CDC’s guidelines for vulnerable populations, you may also lose volunteers who fall into at-risk categories or have family members that do so.
However, there are ways to pivot and adapt to these changing dynamics.
Because ministries in the church are often siloed, we only have an anecdotal idea of who is serving and where they are serving. And let’s face it. Many volunteers serve in multiple roles. To have a good understanding of your church overall, you must audit every ministry area and all volunteer roles. This is not an easy task, but it will save you a great deal of time and frustration down the road.
Here are three audits to consider.
Ministry Role Audit
Identify each ministry area then identify all volunteer roles within that ministry. For each role, note the current number of volunteers serving in that role. Next, determine if the role should remain as is, should pause during this season, or should be adapted.
Ministry Volunteer Audit
It’s time to name names. For each ministry area and role, note the names of volunteers who serve. You should also note how often they serve and their assigned service or shift. Unfortunately, at least for now, identify if they or a family member are considered part of a vulnerable population and if it’s okay for them to serve in this role according to those guidelines.
The Great Roll-Up
The heavy lifting is mostly done. Now, you can roll up each ministry of your church to see what areas are at risk and what areas have the most volunteer positions that are paused and could be redeployed to areas of need. You also can dig deeper and understand which volunteers are at risk and help them find a safer role elsewhere.
You likely have names coming to mind right now. For example, one of your door greeters may be a 20+ year volunteer, but he is part of a vulnerable population because of his age and health. Instead of greeting attendees who arrive on Sunday morning, maybe he could moderate chat and greet those who participate in your church’s livestream or make phone calls to those who remain homebound.
Our team wants to help your church respond with vision, understanding, clarity, and agility in the midst of this season. Check out our FREE Guide to Rapidly Recruit Volunteers and Realign Ministries on Ministry Grid here.