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How do you find board members for your community organisation?

5 December 2023

This is one of the most common questions the Not-for-profit Law team receives from organisations, especially from those operating in regional, rural and remote areas.

In our experience, the best ways to find board members for your organisation are online and in your local community.

We've put together some helpful tips to keep in mind when finding board members.

Advertising for board members online 

There are websites that specialise in recruiting for roles in the not-for-profit sector. Traditional recruitment websites often also allow for the advertisement of volunteer positions. 

If you decide to post an advertisement, you should set out: 

  • the key responsibilities of a volunteer board member  
  • the expected minimum time commitment 
  • the length of the term, and 
  • desired skills or prior experience.

Skills and traits that board members should have (or be able to gain quickly) include: 

  • enthusiasm for (and knowledge of) your organisation and its mission 
  • adequate available time for the work 
  • a basic understanding of the role of a board and an interest in governance and reliability, and 
  • good organisational and communication skills.

Advertisements can be filtered by location – often including ‘regional’.  

Websites where you can post free notices for board vacancies include the Institute of Community Directors Australia’s Board Positions Service, and Board Direction. On SEEK Volunteer, advertisements are free for not-for-profit organisations recruiting volunteers, but a fee applies to advertisements for non-volunteer positions. 

For a fee, you can post advertisements on the websites NFP Careers, Pro Bono Australia, or Ethical Jobs. 

Advertising on your organisation’s social media could also help you reach an audience that already knows and supports your organisation’s mission. 

Promoting board vacancies in your community  

It is also worthwhile advertising board positions in your local community – both in person and online.

You could, for example: 

  • place an advertisement on your local council or community centre notice board 
  • ask your local member of parliament to place a flyer in their office foyer  
  • place an advertisement in your local newspaper, or
  • promote the position in your local community Facebook group.

Hosting a stall at a local community event is also a great way to promote your organisation, its services, and any board vacancies.  

You could request a stall at your suburb’s next weekend market or fete day – remember to take paper membership forms with you! 

For more information, see our fact sheet on bringing on a board member and our resources on recruiting and managing volunteers.