As a Connect site manager, you can make needs privately available to both individual volunteers and user groups. This capability is particularly useful for corporate volunteering, as you can give companies and other organizations exclusive access to respond to certain needs.

This article covers the following topics:

User Groups are discussed throughout this article. To learn more about how User Groups work, go to this article on Assigning Needs to User Groups.

About Needs

As a site manager, you can mark a need as private. While public needs can be viewed by anyone, a private need can only be accessed in the following ways:

  • A volunteer can click on a unique link to the private need.
  • If the need has been assigned to a user group, members of that user group will be able to see it listed with all other needs.

Note: Needs are public by default. If you do not want a need to be published when posted, set your approval settings so that needs are not auto-approved. Agency managers do have the option of marking a need private when they create it.

Marking a Need as Private

You can make needs private individually or in bulk.

Making an Individual Need Private

Both site managers and agency managers have the ability to mark a need private when creating or editing it.

To submit a need as private:

  1. From your site manager panel, go to Volunteerism > Needs and click on the need (or click to create a new need). This action opens the need-posting form.
  2. Scroll down to the Privacy field and select Private.If you are creating a new need, complete all other applicable fields.
  3. Click Create Need or Update Need as applicable. You'll now see a link to the private need in the top right-hand corner of the need form. See Sharing Private Needs as a Site Manager to learn more.

Private needs are indicated in the Privacy column in the needs listing on your site manager panel:

Just so you know: 

  • The agency manager will see a similar column in their agency manager's view of the need.
  • Volunteers who have private access to a need will also see a "lock" icon.

Marking Needs as Private in Bulk

Click here to view a video on making needs private in bulk.

To make multiple needs private in bulk:

  1. Go to Volunteerism > Needs.
  2. Mark the checkboxes to the left of the needs that you wish to make private.
  3. From the Actions for Selected Needs dropdown near the top of the page, select Make Private.
  4. Click the red Make Needs Private button that appears.
  5. Once the needs have been made private, that status will appear in the Privacy column.

Note: The Actions for Selected Needs tool can also be used for other bulk actions, including making private needs public. To learn more, see the article titled Managing Needs in Bulk.

The Volunteer View of Private Needs

A private need can be seen by up to two groups, potentially:

  • If the need has been assigned to a user group, then the user group members will be able to see the need on your site.
  • If the need has not been assigned to a user group, volunteers will only be able to access it if they've been given the direct link to the private need.

In the volunteer view, private needs are indicated by a "lock" icon:

Neither the need nor the icon is visible to volunteers who do not have access to the need. If a volunteer does not have access, they will not be able to search for views or respond to the need. However, a user with access to the private need can search for, view, and respond to it. 

Note: If you are logged in as a site manager, you will be able to see all private needs. Even if you do not belong to the initiative's user group, you will still be able to see the private needs.

Sharing Private Needs as a Site Manager

Once you have submitted the need with the privacy designation, a private Need Link appears at the top of the page.

You can now share this link with any volunteer.

Note: Once a volunteer has this link, they can share it with anyone.

Sharing Private Needs as a Volunteer

Volunteers can share public needs on social media by clicking a "share" icon for the need. This option is not available for private needs. In addition, when a volunteer responds to a public need, they are typically given the option to share the news of their response via social media. This option is also not available for private needs.

However, a volunteer can access the private need link from their browser's address bar and forward it as desired. If the need does not belong to a private initiative, anyone with the link can view it.

Private Needs and Initiatives

An initiative is a grouping of needs on your Connect platform under a common "umbrella" -- for example, volunteer opportunities that are all part of an event. Initiatives can be set up for needs associated with a specific event (such as a Day of Caring), a specific time of year (such as the holidays), a specific group of people (such as a corporation), or a specific effort (such as disaster preparedness or disaster response).

Note:  Needs can be assigned to user groups and can be either public or private. Needs can also be added to initiatives, but the initiatives themselves cannot be made private.