Note: This article is for site managers. If you're an agency or program manager, click here for more information about managing needs for your agency or program. 

Needs are the volunteer opportunities created for your agencies that volunteers can respond to. You can create, manage, and review your needs from the site manager panel! In this article, we'll cover: 

 So you know: Some sites use needs and others use opportunities; some use agencies while others use programs. You can also do a language override if you wish. Please contact our Customer Experience team for more information about language overrides on your site! 

Adding a new need

To add a new need from the Site Manager panel:

1. Go to Volunteerism > Needs:

2. Click the blue Add New Need button:

3. Start creating the need the way you want! 

  • Here are a few of the fields you'll see—be sure to fill in all of the required areas marked with an asterisk on the site (*): 
  • Select Active to make the need public on the site. 
  • Select Pending to begin creating the need—it won't be shared publicly until you change the status to Active.  
  • Be specific about what the need entails: 
    • What sort of impact will this need have on the community? 
    • What's the mission or goal of this opportunity? 
    • What sort of tasks will it include, etc.? 
  • Select Private if you want to keep the need private. 
    • This is great if you want to share the need with specific people but not share it publicly. 
  • Click here to learn more about private needs—including how to make multiple needs private at once.
  • If you want to assign a need to an initiative—select the initiative from the dropdown. 
    • Only one initiative can be selected for a need. 

Note: Click here to learn how you can assign multiple needs to an initiative in a single step. 

  • Select the agency that the need is associated with. 
    • This is a required field.
  • Assign a tag to the need, if applicable. 
  • Tags can be used to group needs for a specific URL—where a URL points to all needs with a particular tag—or in custom reports.
Designate a Site Supervisor
  • You can designate a user as a site supervisor for a need. 
    • A site supervisor acts as a point of contact for your volunteers. 
    • Their information is also generated on the FEMA report. 
  • Comments are for administrative use only; add comments as needed.
  • Comments aren't published anywhere on the front end of the site. 
    • Click here to learn how you can opt to add comments to the "Need Response Thank You" notification that goes to volunteers when they respond to a need

4. Once you've filled in all required and applicable fields, be sure to click Update Need to save your changes!

Updating a need

You can update a need as necessary from your site manager panel. 

To update a need:

1. Go to Volunteerism > Needs and click on the title of the need. 

2. Make the changes you want and be sure to save them by clicking Update Need

✏️ Quick tip: 

  • If you're making changes to an individual shift, you'll be able to send a notification of that update. 
    • Click here to learn more.
  • If you change the need description, date, time, or address and want to notify volunteers of those changes, then check the box beside Notify respondents of this update?

Note: The notification isn't sent for any changes other than the ones listed. 

Non-shift needs

You can send volunteers a notification about changes made to non-shift needs (e.g., needs with duration types of happens on, runs until, multi-date, or ongoing), including changes to:

  • Date (for happens on and runs until needs)
  • Time (for happens on and runs until needs)
  • Description
  • Location (including address, city, state, and ZIP code)

ⓘ So you know: You can edit the "Need Update Notification" template in Content > Notifications

Shift needs

If you update the date or time for a need with recurring shifts or custom shifts, then you'll see the option to notify respondents from the Edit Shift form. 

  • Click here for more information. 

Assigning a need to a user group

Once you've submitted a need, you can assign it to a user group

  • This is helpful if you want to assign needs privately to a select group of volunteers. 
  • Once a need has been assigned to a user group, the group's members can go to a special area of their profile to see that the need has been assigned to them. 
  • If a need has been marked private, it displays with a "lock" icon next to the title.
  • Click here to learn how to assign needs to user groups, individually or in bulk.

ⓘ So you know: If your site uses the Service Learning module, a course instructor can't manage the need unless it's assigned to their SLM user group. 

Deactivating a need

There are two ways that a need is removed from public view: 

  • When a need with duration types runs until, happens on, or shift needs expire at midnight after their assigned dates. 
  • When you manually deactivate it. 

To manually deactivate a need:

1. Go to Volunteerism > Needs. 

2. Click on the title of the need that you want to deactivate. 

  1. This opens the need-information form for that need.

3. From the needs Status dropdown, select Inactive:

4. Click Update Need.

✏️ Quick tip: You can also select Deactive Need from the right-hand side of the need's information page. 

Reactivating an inactive need

You can always reactivate a need as necessary. 

To reactivate a need:

  1. Go to Volunteerism > Needs. 
  2. From the dropdown under the Status column heading, select Inactive
  3. Click on the title of the need that you want to reactivate.
  4. From the Status dropdown of the need-information page, select Active.
  5. Click Update Need.

Viewing important information

Viewing expired needs

To see your site's needs, go to Volunteerism > Needs. The table displays all of your active needs that haven't expired: 

  • You can select Show Expired Needs to have the table include those needs: 

  • The button changes to Hide Expired Needs. 
  • If a need expires and wasn't manually deactivated, then it displays in gray text: 

ⓘ So you know: 

  • An Inactive need is one that has been manually deactivated. 
  • Select Inactive from the Status dropdown to view those needs. 

Waitlists for a needs

If you have enabled the waitlist feature on your site, then volunteers can add themselves to a waitlist for any need that's met its capacity. 

To view the waitlist for a need: 

  1. Go to Volunteerism > Needs. 
  2. Click on the need you want to view a waitlist for.
  3. Scroll to the bottom of the page until you see the Waitlist table: 

  • The Waitlist table provides details on all waitlisted volunteers, and you can complete the following from there as well: 
    • Export the list
    • Email volunteers
    • Remove someone from the waitlist
    • Convert a waitlisted item to a response
  • Click here for more information about managing waitlists. 

✏️ Quick tip: You can add a Waitlist column to the needs table with the table filter. This displays how many people are on the waitlist for each need. 

Shifts, hours, and responses

You can review data for needs including: 

  • If a need has recurring or custom shifts
  • Hours submitted for needs
  • Responses submitted for needs, etc. 

To view user groups, hours, or responses:

1. Go to Volunteerism > Needs. 

2. Click on the need. 

  1. On the right-hand side, you'll see the Need Link URL and links to View User Group, View Responses, or View Hours

3. Click the applicable link.

ⓘ So you know: You may not see all of these links on every need. The types of links that appear depend on the duration type of the need. 

  • View User Groups—From here, you can add a User Group to a need if you have created any on your site. 
  • View Responses—From here, you can:
    • Open a volunteer's profile
    • Email the volunteer
    • Email all volunteers who responded

  • View Hours—From here, you can: 

If you need to edit or review shifts for needs, you can do so by clicking Edit Shift beside the Edit Need tab on the Update Need page: 

  • Edit Shifts—From here, you can: 
    • View respondents
    • Export responses
    • Add default hours
    • Message respondents
    • Edit or delete hours
    • Delete shifts
    • Schedule volunteers for shifts, etc. 

Current day needs

If you'd like to see what your current day's shifts are, go to Reports > Recommended Reports > Today's Shifts: 

  • You can select a date range to see information about a need's: 
    • Start and end date and time
    • The number of responses it's received 
    • How many slots are assigned to that need
    • How many slots are still open 
  • Click here to learn more about the reports available on your site. 

Related articles

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