53+ Sample Volunteer Sign in Sheet Templates

What Is a Volunteer Sign-In Sheet?

Nonprofit and volunteer organizations organize plans, including activities, events, locations, and schedules. And during volunteer hours, there is no assurance if every individual who signed up to serve is around. So, organizations introduce a volunteer sign-in sheet to know who the present volunteers are and what time they arrived. As stipulated in most volunteer agreements, each volunteer is expected to write their important login details in the sign-in sheet—name, time in, time out, contact details, etc.

America had approximately 62.8 million volunteers (25.3% of Americans) in 2016.

Also, Statista confirmed that there were about 1.56 million IRS-registered nonprofit organizations in the US in 2015.

Why Are Volunteer Sign-In Sheets Important?

Volunteer sign-in sheets are important for documentation. For example, anyone present, absent, and late during every volunteer hour will be recorded for daily report purposes. The same goes for determining where certain volunteers are currently located. Volunteers could be assigned to different locations, so the sheet covers such info. The form also includes contact information in case any volunteer needs to be contacted for emergency meetings, updates, and other instructions.

Why is the documentation for volunteers essential, you might ask? Documenting the volunteer’s details under sign-in sheets aims to keep operations organized. Volunteers might not achieve their common goals without keeping track of their tasks, whereabouts, and daily work schedule. More so, the records provide which individuals are highly involved in volunteering. As other people might claim they contributed a lot to the service, records might prove otherwise.

vs. Sign-Up Sheets

The words sign in and sign up both refer to starting something. But they are different. Signing in is synonymous with logging in, meaning an individual already has an account to start a session. Meanwhile, signing up is similar to registering. So, to sign up means a person has no account yet and is still in the process of applying. And when the two terms involve volunteering, the volunteer sign-in sheet is used to record periodic logins of volunteers. In contrast, the volunteer sign-up sheet is the official application form signed by individuals interested in volunteering.

What Are the Elements of a Volunteer Sign-In Sheet?

You already know what volunteer sign-in sheets mean, why they are important, and how they differ to sign-up forms. But are you already familiar with what the said sheet itself contains? Generally, various elements make typical volunteer sign-in sheets. And they consist of the following:

Title: People would not know what a document’s purpose is without the title. The sheet must have the label “Volunteer Sign-In.” Besides the general title, be sure to specify further. For example, is the community service for the sake of feeding, tree planting, or maybe general cleaning? And a more specific title is to include the nonprofit organization’s name.Group Details: The sign-in sheet should include the group details. And these details refer to information that is already applicable to everyone. Factors like the organization’s name, date of the sign-in sheet, and the service’s event do not need to be repeated by every volunteer who signs the sheet. So, those refer to group information. Meanwhile, individual details refer to the info which differs from every volunteer, like the name, time in, time out, and so forth.Name: A volunteer’s name is expected to be one of the individual details. And volunteers need to provide their complete legal name to the form. That way, it will be easy to determine who is who. Otherwise, simply putting first names and nicknames may confuse the bookkeeper only.Job or Activity: Sometimes, the job, event, or activity description will be under group information. But if each volunteer has different tasks to fulfill, then the job or activity section of the form will be under individual details. This segment specifies if a particular volunteer is expected to scout a campaign, list the names of donors, send packages, clean, and more. And this part is vital to prove that volunteers are not merely signing in; they are also doing their job.Address: Of course, people have different addresses. This part is optional, though, because volunteer groups may only require everyone’s addresses from a sign-up sheet. But in sign-in forms, some organizations require knowing every volunteer’s address for formality purposes. And most importantly, so volunteer leaders know how to track their fellow volunteers’ locations.Phone or Email Address: Aside from the address, leaders also know how to reach out to other volunteers based on the phone numbers, email addresses, and other contact details that may be required in the document. Who knows a certain volunteer might be needed for certain tasks? Thus, leaders call the numbers which the volunteer wrote down in the sheet.Time of Arrival or Time Out: What should never be absent in volunteer sign-in or any sign-in sheet, in general, is the time-of-arrival-and-time-out segment. This part is where volunteers log the time they reach the volunteer location and at what time they are about to go home. The process is similar to office-based work where employees should log in and log out under a recorded form or spreadsheet.Signature: Although signatures are optional, some companies do encourage volunteers to affix their signatures in the sign-in document. Signatures indicate that volunteers mean what they said in the form and that they are the ones who wrote such details.

How to Make a Standard Volunteer Sign-In Sheet

Based on a 2015 research survey, approximately 1.56 million IRS-registered nonprofit groups existed in the US. Imagine if all these nonprofit organizations continue without sheets to record every volunteer’s periodic logins during volunteer hours. How organized and successful such volunteer groups are would be hard to imagine. So, volunteer sign-in sheets must be implemented to assure that every volunteer’s presence and performance is recorded. And to make that happen, follow these steps on how to create a volunteer sign-in sheet.

Step 1: Download the Right Template

Free downloadable volunteer sign-in sheet templates are already available. You need not start from scratch because you can make use of pre-formatted templates. Just fill out the details to finish making the sheet quickly. And what else can you do? The templates are editable. Tweak the template’s content until the outcome meets your expectations.

Step 2: Input the Elements of a Volunteer Sign-In Sheet

You can transform a generic volunteer sign-in sheet into a professionally detailed one. Start by ensuring you got every significant element covered in the form. Can you still recall those volunteer sign-in sheet elements discussed earlier? Good. Incorporate the said elements down from the title to the signature.

Step 3: Organize the Format and Presentation

After you put all the necessary elements, be sure to observe an organized format and presentation. Remember that it is unnecessary to write long sentences and paragraphs since these sheets are not detailed letters. The key is to put plenty of blanks, lines, and tables. Those aspects will work as organizers, compared to writing lengthy sentences. But, be sure you arranged accordingly on where volunteers should write their names, time of arrival, and so forth.

Step 4: Keep Things Easy

Sign-in sheets should not be a time-consuming process. Thus, aim to keep each volunteer’s experience easy. You could provide instructions on the sheet so everyone will know what to input and how the format should be like. And if there are technical terms, acronyms, or words that can be simplified, change them. Volunteers might get confused if they are unfamiliar with certain terms that have not been introduced or defined yet.

Step 5: Update and Gather All Sheets for Safekeeping

Once all volunteers have already logged in by jotting down their details in the sheet, do not throw that document. Indeed, you need more sheets to update for the coming volunteer days to sign in. Yet, those records are needed for documentation. The previously used sheets will be useful in evaluation reports, particularly in checking if every volunteer complied with the expected hours, arrived on time, and more. Nevertheless, keep all records for safekeeping as you never know when those will be needed again.


What are the benefits of volunteering?

There are various advantages connected to volunteering. According to HelpGuide.org, you could make new friends, advance your career, discover new things, feel healthy, and even experience fulfillment after knowing that you helped for a cause.

Can I say no to volunteers?

Yes, you can say no. Indeed, volunteers are not recruited because it is a sense of sacrifice or purpose. Sometimes, a person who wishes to volunteer might not meet the standards expected from a nonprofit group or organization. Do not be afraid to say no, either. But, be sure to provide a reasonable explanation. It could be that the volunteer is unfit for the daunting tasks, does not have enough time to offer, and others.

How many hours should you volunteer?

Generally, it is enough to volunteer within 50 to 200 hours. Yes, people can do more than 200 hours to be wholly committed. But, people should have their free time for other stuff too, like school or work.

According to the 2013–2019 President and Chief Executive Officer of the United Nations Foundation Kathy Calvin, “Giving is not just about making a donation, it’s about making a difference.” And Calvin’s quote is relevant to the many volunteers and nonprofit groups. Volunteering makes headlines because of its great intentions. But what matters is that volunteers are present, actually helping, and succeeding in the process. Although volunteers do not have to undergo assessments 24/7, the quickest way to know if they are taking action is to have them log under the volunteer sign-in sheet.