How Immigration Voice Coordinates Hundreds of Volunteers with Teamup

Two days, three hundred meetings, and several hundred volunteers come together smoothly.

About Immigration Voice

Immigration Voice, a non-profit advocacy organization headed by a US Citizen, works on behalf of legal, high-skilled future Americans in the United States. They do their work primarily by petitioning the legislative and executive branches of the US Federal government to find solutions to high-skilled green card backlogs.

The Challenge

Several times a year, Immigration Voice coordinates volunteer-driven Advocacy Events. These events bring hundreds of volunteers together, for one or two days, to participate in small-group meetings with lawmakers. There are about 200 meetings in a single day, with 4–5 people involved in each meeting.

Immigration Voice has several specific needs for a calendar tool that will enable them to coordinate these large, complex events in a streamlined way.

  • They need a calendar that can easily contain hundreds of meetings, or calendar events, in a one or two day period.
  • They need to be able to restrict each volunteer’s calendar view, so an individual only sees the meetings they are scheduled for rather than the entire list of meetings for the day.
  • They need to update the calendar events in real time, so that volunteers can quickly find the information for their assigned meetings, usually on their smart phones.
  • They need to be able to include file attachments or URLs for some meetings.

In addition, they need to coordinate all these meetings in an extremely tight window of time. Multiple “meeting coordinators” need to be able to work with the calendar to assign meetings to volunteers.

Teamup worked with Immigration Voice to develop a solution that works for their particular needs.

Individual Sub-Calendars for Volunteers

Immigration Voice set up one sub-calendar for each of the volunteers, and disallowed overlapping events; that way a volunteer can only be scheduled for one meeting at a time, and no one is double-booked.

Customized Calendar Links for Volunteers

Each volunteer got a unique calendar link with read-only access to their individual sub-calendar; that way, they saw only their scheduled meetings.

Big-Picture View for Coordinators

The people coordinating and assigning the meetings could all work with the master calendar for a big-picture view. They are able to access, view, and modify all the sub-calendars as needed. By using filtering options, they could easily sort and see only the relevant sub-calendars for each meeting which makes it easy to view the availability of the selected volunteers.

Multiple Participants for Each Meeting

Since Teamup allows one event to be assigned to multiple calendars, the meeting coordinators could create one meeting event and assign it to several volunteers.

Include Details and Files

The calendar coordinators can use the event fields to include the names of all people going to the same meeting, and the location or room number. They could also upload files or links for each event as needed.

Update and Notify

The meeting coordinators can easily change details and meeting assignments from the master calendar. Each volunteer can always see their meetings in real time whenever they open the calendar on they mobile devices. Optionally, it’s possible to set up email notifications to be automatically notified of changes on their individual sub-calendar.

A screenshot of the Immigration Voice calendar with 300 meetings.
The Immigration Voice calendar, with 300+ meetings scheduled.

The Benefits

The team at Immigration Voice was able to use Teamup to quickly set up the schedule of meetings, communicate with volunteers, and make the Advocacy Event flow smoothly.

The event was a huge success and thanks to the Teamup app everyone was able to stay on track. Many of our volunteers stated, and I quote, “Teamup was the highlight of the day!” and “The app was a great help, can’t imagine our next event without Teamup.”

Prior to Teamup, they shared, they used to do all the scheduling work on paper; any changes to the meeting location or time would have to be communicated via a separate messaging platform. There was plenty of room for confusion, and though they made it work, it was a highly inefficient way of doing things. Now, two years into using Teamup, they can’t imagine doing without.

…the folks who were using it for the second time were saying that they were wondering how we could manage to do it without Teamup for so many years! …now we send out individual emails with their Teamup key to all attendees, they add it to their app, and voila, they have what they need!

Thanks to Dheeraj Kohli for sharing the Immigration Voice story.

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