Receiving Training Checklist

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This form should be printed out, completed, and placed in the new NPA's file.


This is a training checklist for Receiving for new NPAs.

New NPA's Name: __________________________________

Buddy's Name: _____________________________________

Receiving Basics Date New Hire Initials Staff Initials
Assisting the Donor
Tallying and Stickering
Where CRT Monitors Go
Where CRT TVs Go
Printerland Incoming and Tally Sheet
LCD Land
Safety Procedures
Receiving Boxes Remember to show them where the boxes go and which boxes get sorted through first Date New Hire Initials Staff Initials Cord Chart
Purple Boxes (Cords)
Green Boxes (Computers)
Yellow Boxes (Peripherals)
White Boxes (Recycling)
Blue Boxes (Tapes and Disks)
Packaging Materials and Recycling

Basic Testing Date New Hire Initials Staff Initials
Keyboards (Testing, Sorting and Storage)
Mouse (Testing and Sorting)
Speakers (Testing and Sorting)

Volunteers In Receiving Date New Hire Initials Staff Initials
Name White Board
this page
Shadow two NPAs as they orient volunteers
Volunteer Safety
Volunteer Recognition (Geek Love notes, etc)
Volunteer Break Policy
Volunteers with different abilities
Preventing theft (no coats hanging in receiving!)

The Warehouse Date New Hire Initials Staff Initials
Monitor Tetris
Steel bin
Cardboard bin
Paper Bins
What to communicate with the warehouse staff about
The Store Date New Hire Initials Staff Initials
Bringing items to the store
Items that the store likes
What to communicate with the warehouse staff about
Online Sales Date New Hire Initials Staff Initials
Bringing items to the store
Items that the store likes/does not like
What to communicate with the warehouse staff about
Cultural orientation Date New Hire Initials Staff Initials
Orientation to our meeting structure (Facilitating, Scribing, Consensus) (Ali)
Introduced around to core volunteers (buddy)
Get photo and bio for staff page( (Luiz)
Job Descriptions for other staff members (Darryl)
this page (Laurel)
Explain what to expect the first few weeks (buddy)
How to tell you're doing well (on time, floor shifts, moving position forward, commitments) (buddy)
Free Geek FAQ (Tony)
Standing Staff Committees What the committees do and where to send what emails(Someone)
Netiquette at Free Geek (Tony)
Documentation (why it's important, where to document what) (Luiz)
Where to park your car (Tony)
Full policy list (see Policy category) (Tony)

Training Guide

New to Hardware Donations? Have no fear! This guide will teach you what you need to know to run Receiving successfully and smoothly.

Your main responsibilities are to:

  • Teach Adoption volunteers basic intake procedures using this page as a guide.
  • Teach Adoption volunteers about Safety Procedures. Learn about what to do with hazardous stuff.
  • Manage flow of gizmos through the hardware donations receiving area:
  • Keep staff updated on changes in receiving through the Staff FYI clipboard
  • Ensure that Hardware Donations is well integrated with Free Geek's production and sales and recycling areas:
    • Cable Sorting tells you what the thrift store wants/hates; Hardware Donations Store Box List tells you about gizmos they like or hate
    • Get volunteers to play "monitor tetris" in the warehouse whenever you see more than 12 monitors on the ground.
    • Run Basic Testing so that the adoption volunteers, the store, and grants get what they need.
  • Maintain sanity and be a good role model for your volunteers! Your stress escalates their stress and potential nervousness.
  • Strive to improve the organization, training, and communication within receiving and other areas.

What else?

Lastly, here are some valuable lessons we've learned and want to pass along:

  • It's not the end of the world if you recycle something you shouldn't have, or if you have things leftover when you're supposed to end your shift. There's always more stuff and always more volunteers tomorrow!
  • People LOVE to repackage their stuff, so don't always assume what's in the box is what's pictured on the outside
  • Don't leave unlabeled bins around (especially ones that look like trash cans!): people will inevitably put a mix of stuff into it (trash, food, paper, electronics) and then you'll have to sort it out again. You've been warned.
  • Ask lots of questions and write down who said what, because everyone has a slightly different idea of things.
  • The "handoff" is your friend :)

Potential projects/improvements:

  • Documentation for training boxes
  • Staff FYI clipboard (add two? Make into a binder?)
  • Basic testing


Before Opening:

  • Put away any hardware left over from the night before and tally any dumps.
  • Empty any boxes that need it and replace boxes as necessary.
  • Make sure that you have enough donation tally sheets on each clip board (if not see if there are any that can erased at the front desk or print more) and make sure each clipboard has a sharpened pencil.
  • Gather and clear all carts.
  • Bring in the anti-dumping sandwich board.
  • If appropriate, put out the big white tent.

At the beginning of your shift:

  • Introduce yourself to all volunteers.
  • Assess new volunteers' abilities and train them accordingly.
  • Show volunteers that will be assisting with taking donations where things belong, including a quick tour of the building to show them monitor testing, evaluation, and printerland incoming.
  • Teach speaker, mice and keyboard testing, and answer related questions.

Throughout shift:

  • Assist donors in unloading donations. Be available to answer questions donors have that volunteers may not have the answers to.
  • Assist volunteers in sorting smaller things, as well as dealing with larger hardware.
  • Empty boxes on shelves as necessary, as well as the cardboard and paper.
    • Are things slow?
      • Tie up cords
      • Make sure all plastic bins have appropriate plastics in them
      • Go through boxes to make sure they have the appropriate things in them
      • Show someone how to do keyboard/mouse/speaker testing
      • Sweep floor
      • Purge room of dirty dishes

At closing:

  • Empty boxes as necessary.
  • Empty laptop lock box.
  • Turn off lights and shutdown testing computer and stereo system.
  • Thursday night = take out paper recycling
  • Leave a visible note indicating that any hardware leftover on the table, floor, or carts is not a dump.
  • Put the anti-dumping sandwich board out.

Other notes:

  • Thursdays and Saturdays are adoption classes; do your best to have enough materials ready (i.e. 8 speaker sets, a combination of white and black keyboards, and a combination of black and white mice).