Creating a Volunteer Background Screening Consortium

As an active member of a community do you ever get the feeling that you are nickel-and-dimed when trying to volunteer for multiple organizations? One organization requires an “X” background check while another one requires a “Y” background check ?


Have you ever turned down the opportunity to volunteer because you’ve already paid for two separate background checks, and you are unwilling to pay for, or to go thru the hassle, for yet another one within the SAME community? As an organization, have you lost quality potential volunteers for this very reason?  

If you answered, “Yes,” to any of the above questions, there is a solution that can make volunteering seamless between organizations within your community. It will also allow multiple organizations to maximize the availability of volunteers within a community without creating a monetary or  management nightmare.

SafeHiring has developed a solution using our background services plus our SafeVisitor software that remedies these problems for an entire community. The solution is for similar organizations to create a Volunteer Consortium. What is a consortium? Well, it’s just a fancy word to describe an agreement among groups to accomplish something that is beyond the resources of any single member of the group. In this case, that would be vetting and tracking all the available approved volunteers within a community.

What is needed for an effective Volunteer Consortium?

  • Groups to participate

  • Agreement on background check criteria

  • Consensus on who will vet the volunteer applications

At first, you might think that getting all the groups in your community to agree to participate in a consortium is difficult . . . and you would be correct. It can be challenging; therefore,you wouldn’t want to begin building your consortium with too many groups. As the old saying goes, “Don’t try to eat the whole elephant!” You could start with just a couple of organizations that you know share many of the same volunteers. You might want to assign one of the organizations to vet all the volunteers, or have a company like SafeHiring Solutions do that for you. There is no need for each organization to vet because of the guidelines agreed upon and shared by all groups.

At SafeHiring Solutions we have the consortium model already working in Indiana. We provide a link through our SafeVisitor volunteer management software for a volunteer to apply. Once they have submitted their application, their background check is performed, and vetted by SafeHiring. When approved, the checks are available to be viewed within SafeVisitor by all participating organizations. That volunteer is now available to every organization in the consortium within SafeVisitor. Depending on the groups involved, that means a parent volunteer at school can also be approved for coaching a sport or volunteering at a local church, festival, etc. Since everyone in the consortium has agreed to the conditions for volunteers, there is no need for additional vetting or cost, regardless of which organization in the consortium they are volunteering for.

We have found that once a consortium is started, local non-participating organizations soon express interest in becoming participants. They find it’s a very easy way to manage their volunteer pool within their community. They can be confident that each person has been fully vetted, and there is no need for additional applications or cost to the volunteer. They are ready to go!

If you would like to learn more about how Safe Hiring Solutions and SafeVisitor can help you to manage your volunteers, you can click HERE to sign up for a webinar to learn more about SafeVisitor.