Improvements to our recruitment and vetting procedures

We've made some changes to make our processes clearer and more efficient

Compliance team
05 September 2018

We've made some changes to our policies to clarify and streamline the recruitment and vetting of new and existing volunteers. The changes are designed to provide better support for commissioners and enquiry co-ordinators. They also provide clearer information for those of you who are already volunteers and those who are keen to get started.

You can see the full policy and procedures on our recruitment and vetting policy and recruitment and vetting procedures pages. In the meantime, here's the key changes you need to know about. 

What are the key changes? 

Referencing for young members

Young members who would like to volunteer on turning 18 must provide a letter of commendation from their leader or commissioner and have an informal meeting. This is if they have been active in guiding in the last 12 months.  If they have not been active within the last 12 months they will need to provide references in the same way as an adult enquirer.  

Response time for new volunteer enquiries

We’re also changing the time where those enquiring about volunteering can expect to hear back from us from 21 days to seven days. If new volunteer enquiries don’t receive a response in this time, there’s a new process for following these up: 

  • After seven days, the level main contact will get an automated reminder that there’s an enquiry waiting.
  • After 10 days, a message will go to the next level commissioner to notify them. Both they and the main contact will receive weekly reminders from this point.
  • If the enquirer hasn’t been contacted after a month, we’ll send a note to the county commissioner to let them know. 

When this policy is launched on 11 September 2018, a reminder email will be sent for all outstanding volunteer enquiries that are currently on GO and haven't been responded to within seven days. 

This will mean that new volunteers are given a warm welcome from day one, bring us in line with their expectations, and give volunteers increased support from their commissioners if they haven’t been able to respond to enquiries – if they’ve been unwell or on holiday for example. 

We trialled a shorter response time during the Improving Access to Guiding project, in participating districts in the pilot county, Essex West. This had a positive knock-on effect on the overall joining time (from enquiry through recruitment checks to membership/registration on GO), reducing the process from an average of 11 weeks to eight.

All our members were expected to be compliant with these changes from September 2018. But remember that we're always here to support you - check out our information on welcoming and inducting volunteers and our toolkit for a warm welcome, including some handy email templates to help you get back to potential volunteers quickly. If you have any questions about how these changes will affect you and how we can help, contact [email protected]irlguiding.org.uk