Interview with Sheri Piecuch Vyfvinkel, ACM Volunteer Manager
The overriding mission of the Academy of Country Music (ACM) is “Improving lives by connecting fans, artists and the industry.”
The event took place at the MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas on April 7, 2019, and is one of the world’s largest awards shows. It is an entire weekend of perfectly timed events designed to help raise funds for music-related therapy and education programs, and the Diane Holcomb Emergency Relief Fund.
The success of the entire weekend of events is dependent on an events management team of 20 staff members and a supporting team of 500 staff & volunteers. Among those staff are 12 leads who act as managers or shift supervisors.
Prior to Bloomerang Volunteer, Sheri Piecuch Vyfvinkel, ACM Volunteer Manager, was constantly on her phone, texting volunteers and responding to long queues of inquiries. Communication was overwhelming because there was no efficient way. Volunteers would miss their shifts and it wasn’t anyone’s fault; it was just too difficult to communicate without the proper tools.
“A volunteer manager is so much more than just a volunteer manager, we’re operations. We must understand every aspect of the event to ensure we put people in roles where they’ll be successful and be prepared to represent the brand,” said Sheri. It’s a dynamic position; requirements are consistently in flux and she must be prepared to respond to changing requirements quickly.
Changes typically happen not 4 days in advance, but 4 hours. “It’s like a puzzle that the pieces keep moving.” Sheri believes that the key to success is a team of volunteers with the right skills and attitude combined with the ability to communicate key information to ensure that volunteers know what’s expected of them and have what they need to be successful in their role.
The ACM organizers chose Bloomerang Volunteer – a dynamic and easy-to-use scheduling and communication tool that would enable them to equip their event staff & volunteers to deliver a quality attendee experience.
“We have grown from managing 200 to 800 volunteers, Bloomerang Volunteer makes everything more efficient. I don’t have to read through 800 or 1,000 volunteer applications, I can simply filter by requirement on Bloomerang Volunteer. It saves a lot of time.”
100% Improvement in Communications
“Bloomerang Volunteer helps me communicate a 100% more efficiently and accurately. Using Bloomerang Volunteer, if there is any type of safety situation, I know who’s checked in to the event. It’s part of our security plan: using Bloomerang Volunteer we can pull up all the information we need on our phones. I can send broadcast messages just to specific groups or all volunteers at once.”
Zero No-Shows & Higher Retention Rates
“I didn’t have a single volunteer that didn’t show up for their shift and go, ‘Oh, I didn’t know.'”
“Some of our volunteers have been with us for over 10 years because they feel valued and they feel like they’re part of a professional volunteer program.”