Organisational skills

Organisational skills are the skills you use to keep yourself organised in terms of meeting deadlines, arriving on time and being able to find information as needed.

Being organised is one of the most important abilities whilst volunteering. An organised volunteer uses available resources efficiently and productively. 

Organisational skills help you meet deadlines, pay attention to what's important about the work you do, stay focused and help others. They may include having great communication and time management skills and set goals. 

Types of organisational skills 

  1. Time management 

    Time management skills are skills that help you organise and manage your time more effectively. 

    See our time management guide for further information.

  2. Communication

    Being able to communicate with the people you are supporting, at our NHS sites and with our Support Teams helps make sure everyone is well informed and understands what support they are receiving or support you need if you have any concerns.  

    Communication skills include both sharing and receiving information. They help you prioritise and respond to requests or urgent issues. See our supporting positive communication area of the Skills Bank for further information.

  3. Decision making

    To stay organised and keep up with your schedule, you may need to be able to make good decisions quickly. Being confident in doing that shows people that you took enough time to analyse and think about the issue and that you're prepared to deal with it in a professional way.

  4. Goal setting

    Knowing your goals will help you plan better and focus on the things that will help you achieve those goals.
  5. Delegation

    Ensure you don’t take on too much. Not accepting tasks or declining if things get too much means, you know your limits and can avoid overworking yourself. As much as we value your time and contributions, if you need to take a step back ensure you decline any activities you have accepted so we can delegate to other volunteers. 

  6. Attention to detail 

    People with great attention to detail are focused, mindful and thorough. They understand that little things can impact a situation. That's why being able to notice details is an integral part of being organised and staying on top of all your activities and deadlines. This also means asking questions to clarify details if you are unsure.

  7. Self-motivation

    Having the motivation to stay organised is the first step to having the most important tasks under control. To keep your motivation up, you may want to think about how being organised can influence your personal goals. 

  8. Prioritising

    The ability to prioritise helps you decide which tasks and issues need more attention than the others. By appropriately assessing the importance of things you can ensure that the day is smooth and that you meet your most important deadlines. 

  9. Reward yourself for staying organised

    If you find reward systems motivating, you may want to stick to this model while developing and improving your organisational skills. For example, reward yourself by getting a coffee, or going for walk or reading a book can also help you relax and prepare for your next task. 

Organisational skills can be learned and honed over time through consistent practice. Start with small steps and gradually incorporate these practices into your volunteering.