CiviVolunteer beta is released!

Exciting news from our CiviCRM team here at Confluence – the beta version of CiviVolunteer has been released!

CiviVolunteer beta is released.What is CiviVolunteer?

The CiviVolunteer extension provides tools for signing up, managing and tracking volunteers.The features for this release focus on volunteering at events, but the design creates a foundation for adding support for volunteering in a wide variety of situations.

Jump down to see a demo by Kevin Reynan of A Little Help Hosting.

What Volunteers are Needed and When

After installing the extension using the automated installer from Manage Extensions, you’ll see a new Volunteers tab for each event (Manage Events > Configure). Check the  ‘Enable Volunteer Management’ box to get started. You can then build a list of volunteer shifts by clicking ‘Define Volunteer Needs’.Shifts consist of a volunteer role (e.g. Usher, Box Office, etc.) plus a date and time period. For each shift you can specify the number of volunteers required.

Self-service Volunteer Signup

Once you’ve defined your volunteer needs, you can decide to include a volunteer signup form as part of your public event. A “Volunteer Now” button will appear on your event info page (next to the “Register” button). Volunteers can select a shift, or let you know that they are available for any shift. You will need to enable the “CiviVolunteer: register to volunteer permission” if you want to provide self-service signup for anonymous and / or authenticated users.

Manage Volunteer Assignments

The ‘Manage Assignments’ widget allows you to assign flexible volunteers to shifts, add new volunteers and change shift assignments – all in an easy to use drag-and-drop panel.

Log and Report on Volunteer Hours

Finally, staff can log actual hours worked by each volunteer on a regular basis if needed for funder reports (click “Log Volunteer Hours” from the event’s Volunteer tab). Then you can access the new Volunteer Activity Report (Contacts > Contact Reports) to get statistics statistics on volunteering. You can even add that report as a dashlet on your dashboard if you want to keep track of your organization’s cumulative volunteering totals.

Known Issues

  • Requires 4.4 beta 4 + latest checkout from Github 4.4 branch (or beta 5 once that’s released).
  • The installer will not create the “register to volunteer” permission automatically for Joomla and WordPress installations.
  • When editing an existing volunteer activity record, the Need field in the CiviVolunteer custom data set appears as an integer, rather than a dropdown.

What’s Next

  • Going forward there are some great ideas on the drawing board for phase 2, including specification of qualifications and skill-matching, public recognition / reward, and self-service logging of volunteer hours.
  • If your organization has invested in a CiviCRM installation, and you foresee a need for CiviVolunteer, consider donating to the ongoing development of CiviVolunteer through the Make it Happen program.
  • Developers within organizations that would like to use CiviVolunteer are more than welcome to participate in the development and testing effort. Contact us via the project’s GitHub< repository.


Beardcast #6 – CiviCRM 4.4 and CiviVolunteer from A Little Help with Drupal on Vimeo.