System for managing volunteers

How shall the Free Fringe be organised and run in the future?

System for managing volunteers

Postby gareth morinan » 04 Sep 2011, 19:13

I mentioned briefly in the end of Fringe meeting that we could implement some kind of simple system of task allocations, so that people have a clear idea of what they are responsible for doing to help the Free Fringe. I suggest this because personally I think the open requests to [i]everyone[/i] to volunteer for [i]everything[/i] does not result in us making the best use of the human resources we have. I have spoken to several individuals who indicated that they would've done more to help had someone directly contacted them and said "this is a task you could do". I get the impression that the majority of Free Fringers would happily commit a few more hours to help out, but would rather be told what to do, rather than having to self organise.

Here is what I propose: every member of the FF must do 2 tasks to help with the running of the Free Fringe. Many of the more important tasks will be volunteered for by keen members, but the majority of members who are less directed will be assigned tasks. Examples of something that would constitute 1 task:
- Being a venue captain
- Setting up or taking down a venue
- Manning a FF stand on the Royal Mile for 3 hours
- Co-ordinating sales of Advertising
- Co-ordinating receipt of Show Titles/Blurbs
- Organising a FF benefit night (during the Festival or beforehand), where all proceeds go to the central FF fund

For anyone who takes on a significant task (e.g. Designing the Brochure, or being in charge of Slot allocations) I would consider this enough to warrant '2 tasks' worth of volunteering, and so that person should not have to do anything else.

Some notes on this:

Setting up/taking down a venue does not require all the performers at that venue, it is a job that varies with venue (e.g. Sin club requires no-one because the staff do it), and so for the venues that do require it the venue captain should judge how many people are needed (probably only 1 or 2 people in addition to the venue captain themselves). Also at the moment a lot of performers aren't even available to help with it because they're not around on the Friday before or Sunday after, and so this would recognise those people who have been able to turn up and put in some hours.

Organising FF benefits is a great idea, hopefully with an added incentive (e.g. you get one of your tasks ticked off) then more people will be keen to do these and it may become a regular occurrence.

FF stand on the Royal Mile: we will only have a stand that is actually present and manned if we have a system like this. This is probably how MOST performers will use up their 'tasks', because we'd need at least 2 people manning it at anytime, for probably 9 hours a day (3 shifts) for 25 days or so, which is about 150 tasks.
And just to clarify - performers will STILL be obliged to hand out FF brochures with their own flyers (it does certainly help promote the brand if you walk down the Royal Mile and see 20 flyers all holding the FF brochure). However having a constant supply of brochures on the Royal Mile will massively help people distributing them with their own flyers.
I don't think there are many problems with setting up a stand on the Royal Mile, I know a friend who set up quite a large publicity thing (a giant cone) which was out on the Royal Mile for a lot of the festival, and no one batted an eyelid. So a few bits of cardboard with 'Free Fringe' written on them shouldn't be a problem.

Obviously some details still need to be ironed out.
Thoughts please...
gareth morinan
Posts: 16
Joined: March 2008

Re: System for managing volunteers

Postby Asli Akbay » 06 Sep 2011, 23:01

This is a great idea, as already discussed at the 2011 closing meeting...

With the amount of participants I think even ONE task would be sufficient.

When participants for 2012 are determined and contacts are collated it should be relatively straightforward to determine and keep track of who is doing which task...
Asli Akbay
Posts: 8
Joined: June 2010

Re: System for managing volunteers

Postby andrewjlederer » 12 Sep 2011, 02:29

A Royal Mile FF stand is a good idea. Whether it should be a guerilla presence, as implied in Gareth's post, is a separate issue. That may not be a good idea.
Posts: 16
Joined: September 2010

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