Example of a nonprofit job posting

When applying for a volunteering job, you will want to know what to look for in a job posting. You will want to check out the following items:

  • Name of the organization - this will usually be at the beginning or the top of the advertisement
  • Position title - this will be in the first sentence
  • Where and why - the ad should tell you where the job is and why it is being offered
  • Job duties - the job should also tell you what the duties are
  • Job applicant information - this is what type of applicants are acceptable to this position
  • Experience requirements - if there is any experience required, it should be listed
  • Benefits - these can be anything non-monetary from food and lodging to travel expenses being paid for
  • Contact information - this will be at the end of the advertisement

What to Watch For

When applying for a volunteering job through an advertisement, you should be aware of possible missing information which will tell you more about the job than the words. Such items to consider are:

  • The organization name. Is it one you recognize either nationally or being a part of the community. Unknown organizations may not have the track record of more stable nonprofits.
  • General position titles such as 'worker' or 'clerk' will mean you are applying for a position which will be used when and where needed.
  • The list of job duties is too short. This means the organization has not clearly thought out the position before posting the ad.
  • The list of job duties is a laundry list. This means there are strict guidelines which will be followed specifically with very little room for individuality.
  • Experience requirements can range from 'none' to needing a certification or other qualifications. Be sure to make note of this as you may be over/under qualified.
  • What are the benefits? Do they compliment the pay rate?
  • There should be more than one way to communicate with the organization. Most nonprofits today have websites and emails, as well as phone numbers and physical addresses.

When you are applying for a volunteering job, you should be able to identify different items about yourself which will help you pick which jobs you are able to fill.

  • Knowing your experience in different areas of skill
  • Knowing what skills can be used in different areas
  • Be realistic of your expectations when applying for jobs
  • Knowing your personal qualities and how they match the position
  • Being able to know how much time you can devote to the position

Applying for a volunteering job is the same as applying for any other type of job. You must be realistic and set goals so that you apply to the right positions to match your experience, skills and time.