Calculating the Economic Impact of Volunteers

How does one put an economic value on the time volunteers give to an organization? Traditionally volunteer time has been estimated using a single dollar value for all types of volunteering. The Value of Volunteer Time, which is updated annually, is made available by Independent Sector. The current Independent Sector rate is $22.14 per hour (2012).

Use of a single value assumes that all volunteers are doing jobs that are of equal value. However, it can easily be shown that this is not true when considering the potential cost of replacing a volunteer with paid staff. A volunteer performing a professional task such as accounting is worth more in the market place than that same volunteer doing gardening.
 
How, then, can a realistic economic value be put on volunteer time? By putting a value in what volunteers do at the task level.
 
The Economic Impact Of Volunteers Calculator created by Points of Light makes this possible. It estimates the appropriate wage rate for volunteer time based on what the person does, the value of specific tasks according to market conditions as reported by the US Department of Labor. Organizations can use the Calculator to determine the value of the time their volunteers give doing a wide variety of volunteer jobs.
 
To use the calculator, search for the job description using the drop-down box. Then enter the number of hours given by all volunteers performing that particular task. Repeat this task until all volunteer positions have been entered. The system automatically calculates the totals for each job category and for the total across all volunteer jobs. 

Economic Impact of Volunteers Calculator

Loading Economic Impact of Volunteers calculator...
Job Title Hourly Rate Hourly Benefit Number of Hours Subtotal
remove
Choose a volunteer job title from the list above.
Grand Total:
print export