Learning patterns/Understand local volunteers' characteristics and behavior to develop an effective program
What problem does this solve?
Some programs were not tailored to the local volunteers' needs and wants and became ineffective.
What is the solution?
Understanding the volunteers is one of the most important key to create a successful project and the cheapest way to do this is by holding a survey. The result of the survey can be turned into a program plan. If, for example, most of the volunteers in your Wikipedia are students, it maybe better to hold the event in schools or in areas around the school. Information that is possible to be gathered using surveys including: age, gender, educational background, domicile, occupation etc.
Things to consider
- You can refer to Wikimedia's survey questions to make your own
- Announce the survey in the Advanced Site Notice so everyone can see it
- There are some great survey apps that can be used for free, including the Google Drive
When to use
- One of the issues that the Wikimedia Community Ireland has faced is recruiting and retaining volunteers. After reading this learning pattern and talking to other Wikimedia groups/chapters, we decided to conduct a user survey to see what the users in Ireland want from us as a group. We are hoping this will give us some insight on how to recruit and retain volunteers. Sameichel (talk) 12:20, 15 March 2016 (UTC) 
- During the Wiki Needs Pictures project we made interviews with local volunteers in order to understand how to build the user experience. --AlessioMela (talk) 18:46, 20 August 2016 (UTC)
- If you want to address a specific group of local volunteers, there is Grants:IdeaLab/Wikimetrics for local users, the "spin-off" of the above grant. If I can make a real plug-and-play interface finding volunteers is going to be a minor problem.--Alexmar983 (talk) 20:42, 20 August 2016 (UTC)
- Project roles: Define the kinds of tasks and time commitment necessary for volunteer roles.
- Developing good survey questions: How to frame questions so that you get the answers you need.