Greater concerns – appointment reviews

If serious concerns arise, regarding a volunteer’s performance in role, these should be addressed promptly. Concerns could stem from any number of issues, whether it be safeguarding, safety, a dispute, disregard for Scouting rules and values, or actions that put others or the organisation at risk or into disrepute.

Appointment Reviews
A/R formInformal reviewFormal reviewNew leader
Minor concernsGreater concerns
New GSLLarge teams
Experienced leader

Leaving a roleUseful tips

The concern may have evolved over a period of time, or a specific incident may have caused concern. In this case, a formal review is the most appropriate course of action and can be called within a short time frame in order to manage the concern in a timely manner.

If you have already developed a relationship with the volunteer through regular informal reviews (catch-ups), then it should be easier to have a more structured discussion. In turn, the volunteer is more likely to be unaware of issues and had the opportunity to change or make improvements.

Key points to remember

Use the Appointment Review Form to take notes.

Be prepared

  • always focus on facts and not gossip; ask what happened from those present and impacted;
  • prepare what you will say and how you will say it;
  • explain what you need as the line manager (this can be very powerful, eg: ‘I need someone in this role to . . .’);
  • stick to your plan and follow-through;
  • be very clear in what you say;
  • have a time-frame in mind for any decisions to be made;
  • know what you would like the outcome of the review to achieve.

Seek advice

If it is likely that removal from role and/or suspension of role is a possibility it is important to speak to your District Commissioner (DC) before undertaking the review.

Remain calm

Stick to the facts, do not get involved in taking sides or apportioning blame. Acknowledge the volunteer’s feelings on the matter, eg: ‘I can see you are finding this upsetting/ frustrating . . .’.


If you feel it is appropriate you may wish to ask an independent person to join the meeting to take notes, eg: a member of the District team. Discuss with the volunteer who will be present at the meeting and that they may also invite someone to join them for support.

Thank you

Ensure that the volunteer is thanked for the time they have given to date. It may be that they have many years of good service before this point which it is important to recognise.

How to get involved

Register interest in volunteering or join our youth programme