Introduction to employment
As anyone who is part of a community or voluntary group knows, there is a lot of work to be done, but there typically isn't a large budget to do it with. This means members must perform multiple tasks and often do the job of more than one person. Small budgets also mean that organisations rely a great deal on volunteers and workers need to be motivated by the values, vision and mission of the organisation. Having a team that works well together is vital to any group's success in achieving its goals.
Many organisations start out with a core group of volunteers and then begin to employ paid workers as activities increase, needs grow or resources emerge, but 90 per cent of community groups rely entirely on volunteers.
Being a good employer can be complex and taking on people for the first time or adding paid workers to your volunteer base needs to be considered carefully.
Good employment practice in the community sector should be based on:
Developing employment policies and practices that model and support the organisation's values and kaupapa
Ensuring good communication between all parts of the organisation
Supporting paid and volunteer staff, and making sure they feel valued
Being aware of and managing the tensions that can arise between governance members and paid staff, and being clear about their respective roles and responsibilities.