In July of 2017 the members of the Volunteer Development Committee (VDC) met to brainstorm how to revitalize volunteering within RUSA. It was decided to survey current and past committee chairs to pinpoint areas where they would like training or areas that appeared to lack information. From this feedback the VDC planned to identify strategic areas to focus volunteer development. Once the survey results were compiled, the VDC reported to the RUSA Board two key recommendations to help the committee with deliverables:
- The committee would benefit from strategic objectives originating at the board and facilitated collaboration with other RUSA committees.
- The committee would benefit from being a centralized repository for training and orientation materials.
The survey results also enabled the VDC to create a roadmap to the future. During 2018 the following top three action items were outlined:
- Update and create FAQs on RUSA Update
- Reconceptualize leadership orientation to a virtual model
- Create a pathfinder to all orientation and best practices materials
By July of 2019 the RUSA Board developed a working document that outlined goals, strategies, and action items. Just as the VDC was regrouping with new committee members, the Board’s working document targeted the VDC as a primary strategy to support the goal of being a financially stable, effective organization that includes equity, diversity, inclusion, and access. Three action items were identified for the VDC:
- Increased communications
- Succession planning
As 2019 ends, the VDC is tying these three action items to their purpose and charge – to coordinate volunteer development within RUSA and ensure that volunteer leaders have the resources and support needed for the yearly turnover of leadership. A working orientation/mentoring program timeline is in place and the VDC is currently developing the scope, content, and approach needed in order to roll it out. The goal is to present recommendations to the Board by February 2020 and introduce the program to membership at 2020 Annual Conference.
Looking further, the VDC will work closely with the Board of Directors and RUSA Leadership Council on the state of RUSA volunteers including turnover issues and barriers to volunteering and productivity.