Nonprofit Technology

3 Best Free Volunteer Management Software for Your Nonprofit

By | 6 min read | Published

Volunteer management software helps nonprofits track volunteer hours.

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We conducted this analysis based on reviews and ratings data as of August 2021. In order to present the most up-to-date information, the product cards below show real-time ratings. Please note that this means the ratings value in the product card may not reflect the ratings value at the time of analysis.

Volunteers are often the unsung heroes of nonprofit organizations. Whether managing daily tasks, running workshops, or hosting events, volunteers help boost your organization’s efficiency and reach desired goals. 

However, managing volunteers can be difficult. As a nonprofit leader, you need to train your volunteers and ensure they can effectively facilitate programs and events.

Free volunteer management software can help with all this and more by making it easier to train, coordinate, and mobilize volunteers. These tools help organize your data, delegate tasks, facilitate volunteer collaboration, and let you view individual performance in a volunteer portal.

This article highlights the three best free volunteer management software tools for your nonprofit, sorted alphabetically.

See the full list of free volunteer management software tools in Capterra’s software directory.
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1

SignUp.com: Offers payment processing

SignUp.com is a volunteer management software solution built for schools, businesses, and community leaders. This tool helps users coordinate volunteers to plan and host events and workshops.

With SignUp.com, you can send SMS and email reminders to your audience, collect payments and contributions/donations, track volunteers, schedule volunteer shifts, and share information and updates about your events and volunteer opportunities on social media.

This software automatically stores and syncs your contacts for easy access and provides mobile-friendly signups for events via SMS.

SignUp.com offers chat support and is web-based.

Best Functionality
View Profile

Key Features:

  • Calendar management
  • Communication management
  • Membership management
  • Member directory
  • Scheduling
  • Self-service portal
Trial/Free Version:
Free Trial
Free Version
Device Compatibility:

Screenshot:

Classroom Helper SignUps
Classroom Helper SignUps
2

SignUpGenius: Helps track volunteer hours

SignUpGenius is a coordination and volunteer management solution designed to help nonprofits organize events and manage event attendees and volunteers.

This volunteer management system offers multiple themes so users can create customized signup pages and add information fields on signup forms. You can also duplicate past signups and transfer information to save time.

SignUpGenius lets you send automatic text and email reminders to volunteers and track volunteer engagement. You can send individual and group messages to event attendees and target communication for specific recipients.

This tool also helps with volunteer scheduling and can generate custom reports to track volunteer hours. You can assign multiple admins with varying permission/access levels and also notify admins whenever reports are generated for a volunteer program.

SignUpGenius offers email, phone, and chat support and is web-based.

Most Affordable Upgrade
Visit Website

Key Features:

  • Attendance tracking
  • Calendar management
  • Communication management
  • Event management
  • Scheduling
  • Volunteer recruiting
Trial/Free Version:
Free Trial
Free Version
Device Compatibility:

Screenshot:

3

Wild Apricot: Includes a volunteer information database

Wild Apricot is a membership and volunteer management system fit for small businesses and nonprofits. It allows users to create websites for event signups and send registration emails.

This tool helps with volunteer recruitment, volunteer management, and task assignments for upcoming events. Users can create a volunteer schedule within the tool and it includes an online registration portal where you can create detailed event listings with descriptions and images.

Wild Apricot facilitates payment tracking and event registration fee collection through your website. Attendees can also use a mobile app to submit payments.

This tool maintains a volunteer information database and lets you send email blasts for announcements and organizational updates.

Wild Apricot offers email, phone, and live chat support, as well as an iOS and Android app for mobile devices.

Visit Website

Key Features:

  • Accounting
  • Attendance tracking
  • Committee management
  • Donor management
  • Email marketing
  • Fundraising management
Trial/Free Version:
Free Trial
Free Version
Device Compatibility:

Screenshot:

Website Builder: Build a professional looking website using one of our professionally designed and mobile-friendly website templates with your organization's logo and color scheme, then add your own text and images.
Website Builder: Build a professional looking website using one of our professionally designed and mobile-friendly website templates with your organization’s logo and color scheme, then add your own text and images.
Read our volunteer management software buyers guide to understand the benefits and common features of these tools.

How to choose the right free volunteer management software for your organization

When you’re working with a limited budget like most nonprofits, choosing a free software tool can help you reach your goals without spending too much. Keeping the following considerations in mind can help you choose the right tool:

  • Figure out how accessible the tool is: An ideal volunteer management tool is accessible from multiple devices and lets you view volunteer databases and reports on demand. This makes event and volunteer management more efficient and means you can easily delegate responsibilities to available volunteers.
  • Check for a robust communication portal: Any volunteer management software is incomplete without built-in communication functionality. The software you choose should be able to send text and email reminders to volunteers and event attendees.
  • Assess the efficiency a tool brings: Features such as scheduling and hours tracking, report generation, and a user-friendly interface are crucial to get the most out of a volunteer management tool. Before making a final purchase, check whether the software you’re buying has these features.

Common questions to ask while selecting free volunteer management software

When choosing a free volunteer management tool, ask software providers a few questions to make sure you have all the information from the start.

What limitations does this free tool have?

Most providers limit user seats and functionality in non-paid software plans, and you want to be aware of any limitations from the outset.

What kind of technical support should I expect?

Free tools often have limited support services, while paid users get priority support. Before finalizing your purchase, check on the support offerings for the software’s free plan.

Does the tool offer data integration assistance?

Volunteer management can require significant data handling for your organization. Ask software providers if their tool offers data integration and migration support so you can effortlessly move data when required.

How did we choose these products? We didn’t—you did.

To find your ideal software match, you need information you can trust—so you can save time, stay on budget, and focus more energy on growing your business. It’s why we vet and verify all our user reviews and recommend only the tools endorsed by people like you.

In other words, our product recommendations are never bought or sold, or based on the opinion of a single individual—they’re chosen by your peers, reflecting the views and experiences of our independent base of software reviewers.

To be considered for this list, products have to:

  1. Have at least 20 unique product reviews published on Capterra within the past two years, with an average rating of 3.0 or higher. We selected the three products with the highest ratings to feature in this article.
  2. Offer a free, standalone version of the software (not a trial version of the software where you must purchase a product after a limited amount of time).
  3. Meet our volunteer management software market definition: “Volunteer Management software helps prospect, recruit, coordinate, prioritize, schedule, and communicate with a volunteer workforce. Other features include recording volunteer hours, matching jobs to skills, mail mergers, and volunteer profiles.  This type of software is often utilized by non-profit organizations, schools, museums, and hospitals.”

Note: The content in this piece that provides opinions and points of view expressed by users does not represent the views of Capterra.

“Best functionality” tool is identified based on the highest user ratings for functionality that a vendor received in publicly available reviews.

“Most affordable” tool is identified based on the lowest pricing a vendor offered on their website in terms of cost to upgrade as of September 23, 2021.


Looking for Volunteer Management software? Check out Capterra's list of the best Volunteer Management software solutions.

About the Author

Ashish Upadhyay

Ashish Upadhyay

Writer @ Capterra, helping digital Davids beat Goliaths. I cover small business trends in CRM, accounting, real estate, insurtech, and emerging tech. B.A English, University of Delhi. Currently pursuing my master’s in English Literature. When I’m not working, I’m planning my next trek, playing video games, or working out.

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Comments

Comment by Hadley Shannon on

We’ve been using the free version of Signup.com for about 6 months. There are many parts of it that I like. I like that it sends out reminder emails and lets volunteers sign up for their own shifts. I like that I can have multiple opportunities on one page, but I can’t export any reports without upgrading. I am looking at other options now, because I would like to be able to export reports and possibly schedules. My organization does not have the budget right now for a paid service.

Comment by Sarah Browning on

It looks as though Church Director is no longer active. (No need to make this comment public… I just wondered if you’d want to update the post.)

Avatar

Comment by Eric Burger on

Your audience may also want to consider VolunteerHub’s volunteer management software when vetting solutions. VolunteerHub offers nonprofits a streamlined solution with recruitment, scheduling, communication, database and CRM integration features (just to name a few).

Check them out here: https://www.volunteerhub.com/nonprofit/volunteer-management-software

Comment by Heather on

Thank you for this list! I volunteer at a very small charity that does not have funds to pay for a tracking program. I know they would like to be part of that volunteer recognition program through DC, but they just don’t have the ability to track well enough, yet. I was researching sites for a free volunteer hour tracking program (cloud or download). I did come across something call Track it Forward. Have you reviewed that one? It would be interesting to know how it compares to those on this list. I’ll be checking these out for sure.

Comment by Dr. Kushal Banerjee on

I was looking for an online system to build and to maintain effective communications with our volunteers. We need a free version as currently we can’t afford a paid version.

The Son of Service seems to match the requirement more closely than others. But it appears that we lack the necessary IT skills to get it installed.

In addition, if something may be made available online, in the cloud, rather than on a personal computer that may be better – as the fear of losing the data due to problems with the PC may be minimised.

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