The VIVA is one specific tool within the toolkit which can be used to measure the economic impact of volunteering. It uses a simple equation to calculate the difference between the monetary investment into a volunteering programme and the value of the work carried out by volunteers. Volunteer Now have developed a simple spreadsheet which will help people to calculate a VIVA ratio based on them entering some figures i.e. the final ratio figure will show what return on investment an organisation gains from involving volunteers. In 2013, the VIVA spreadsheet was adapted to make it easier to calculate for 'occasional' as well as 'regular' volunteering contribution.
Click here to view a blank copy of the VIVA spreadsheet (using POUND signs).
Click here to view a blank copy of the VIVA spreadsheet (using EURO signs).
Examples of how the VIVA has been used:
View a completed VIVA spreadsheet (2010)- Click here.
Click here Richard Gormley from the University of Ulster Sports Outreach talks about his experience of using the VIVA.
Measuring the Economic Impact of Volunteering starts with a Good Recording System
Not all organisations record volunteering activity, such as number of active volunteers, roles carried out and hours gifted over a period of time, however, this is important information to capture in order to measure the economic impact of volunteering.
Volunteer Now has developed a simple recording sheet for organisations that don't currently have a way of tracking volunteer activity. This is a sheet which volunteers could be asked to complete and return by hand, post or email. The information could also be captured centrally in an excel sheet by the organisation, this may be the easiest system if volunteers are office based. The system that is used is up to each organisation, however, it is important to remember that measuring the economic impact of volunteering starts with a good reliable recording system.
Having information on volunteer activity over a month / year can be used to accurately measure volunteer 'value'. If information on the 'investment' or 'expenditure' against a volunteering programme is also recorded then it is possible to calculate a return on investment using a tool such as the Volunteer Investment to Value Audit, listed above.