In-kind Giving and Categories of Work using V4SF

If in-kind giving looks more like volunteerism to you, track it with Volunteers for Salesforce rather than opportunities.

I noticed that many of our volunteers bring in-kind gifts with them. And it is true that our in-kind donors usually spend some time behind the scenes collecting, sorting, or delivering their donated items. So it seemed natural to me to record in-kind gifts using Volunteers for Salesforce and to summarize out-of-pocket expenses. In-kind gift receipts and proof for volunteer hours use the same process. We decided to track two types of in-kind hours and several categories to be ready for annual reporting and filing our IRS 990 appendices. You can read more about the solution here. You can access the installation URL for the unmanaged package. No support but you can ask questions (@streethyouth).

In addition, you get some other cool fields from this same data:
Primary Data Entry Fields on the Volunteer Hour:
  • Direct Hours, Indirect Hours, Training Hours record hours. Direct and Indirect are working hours. Training is my way of recording orientation, training, and on-the-job training investments.
  • Costs-Out-of-Pocket. This is where I put our estimate of in-kind gift values. Note that I don’t share our estimate with donors except in summary form. I rely on donors to assign value for tax purposes on their own.
  • Category. I use Category to help us with annual reporting for 990 with picklist items like Food, Non-food, Helper, Administrative, etc. I have some rules to assign categories automatically based on works in the job name and campaign name. I haven’t included those since they are very specific to us. I assign those not picked up automatically every once in a while so that everything is in a category.
  • Receipt Requested. This is a checkbox. When checked, a workflow rule will send out a receipt for VH that is completed. One rules is for in-kind donations only. The working is more like a receipt. Another rule sends out an email for volunteers who need proof they did work. The workflow rules that send the email set a checkbox Receipt Sent.
  • Comment: I use this field to describe the in-kind donation and/or work for purposes of tracking and receipts. I never put a value there as this text is shared with volunteers.
Derivative Fields:
  • Hours Worked: A workflow rules set Hours Worked to total of Direct and Indirect Hours.
  • Total Hours: From there V4SF Package sets Total Hours to Number of Volunteers * Hours Works.
  • Formula Fields set Total Direct, Indirect, and Training Hours in the same way.
Volunteer Recurrent Schedules:
  • I added Direct Hours, Indirect Hours, and Costs Out of Pocket to the VRS as well. These are copied by a workflow rule to the Volunteer Hour when created.
Roll-up Summary Data:
  • Rollup summary fields. These give Total Direct Hours, Total Indirect Hours, and Costs Out-of-Pocket. If I recall, I needed to call support to get the number of rollup summary fields allowed increased.

Volunteer Behavior Patterns:


  • Volunteer Patterns: We give three annual powers for volunteers based on their completed volunteer patterns. This is really powerful but very simple. You get Volunteer Annual Direct Working Power, Indirect Working Power, and In-kind Giving Power. This is all simply based on statistics of the volunteers’ behavior. But it’s very helpful when you want to know “do we have enough volunteers” or not type of question. You also get a Volunteer Current Until date and Volunteer Frequency classification out of the same analytical fields. All automatic and simply based on formula fields with no additional data entry.

  • You can also do amazing graphs of volunteer power added based on date of first volunteering and volunteer power lost based on Volunteer Good Until dates that are past. Really gives you a quick insight into the macro state of our volunteer organization efforts.


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