Cafeteria » Finding a Sub for your Shift

Finding a Sub for your Shift

Requesting and Finding a Substitute (Sub or Swap Shifts) 

  • Life happens to all of us! A meeting is called at work, you have a medical issue, sick child, other schedule conflicts, etc.  If you are unable to work your assigned shift in the cafeteria (or with any other volunteer job), it is your responsibility to find a substitute volunteer, whether you know of the conflict 2 months, two weeks, 2 days, or 2 hours in advance.   

Requesting a Sub via VSP (Volunteer Scheduler Pro)

  • Save the following page to your bookmarks or desktop on your phone/tablet/computer
  • Login to VSP:
  • Once logged in, click on “My Schedule” tab 
    • Your upcoming shifts will be listed here with an option to “Request Sub”.
    • Click the “request sub” link next to your shift.  In the pop-up box, please enter details that would help others who can sub for you (the reason for the request or preferred day of the week to switch). Submit the request.
    • The VSP system will generate automatic emails to all “Cafeteria” position holders who are qualified and available to work your shift.  You will receive a copy of your sub request email from VSP.
    • If you are making a sub request 24hrs or on the day of the assignment, text Cafeteria Volunteer Coordinator, your Shift Captain ASAP. 
Ideas for finding your shift sub
  • The process does not end with your online sub request. Here are suggestions to proactively find a substitute or make a swap to fill your shift.  
  • Ask family members (spouse, grandparents too) to fill in for you. They must have a VSP profile.
  • Use the Rosters tab in VSP to email volunteers who work the same day of the week as your assigned shift but different week than your assigned shift (Example, you work 1st Wednesday, then email 2nd, 3rd, 4th or 5th Wednesday shift holders if they’d be flexible to switch).
  • Ask friends and other parents in your child’s class.
  • From the “My Schedule” tab or the cafeteria schedule in VSP, look out for outstanding sub requests made by other volunteers.  “Propose a trade”.
  • We suggest having a buddy system in place. Ask a friend or a small group of friends if you can be each other’s buddies if you need to make a cafeteria shift change. You have to have shifts on different days to make this work.  

Swapping Cafeteria Shifts

  • At the bottom of the “My Schedule” tab in VSP are outstanding sub requests made by other volunteers.  Propose a trade with these volunteers and “SWAP” shifts if it’s agreeable to both of you. It’s a win-win! Click “Volunteer Now” and click “propose a trade” to start a dialogue with another volunteer. You can select the shifts you wish to trade and communicate with the trading volunteer.  It is up to the other volunteer to accept the trade. (You may look up the volunteer in the directory/from the VSP roster and contact them directly by email or text requesting the trade. Then it can be finalized through VSP.)  
  • You do not have to make an equivalent swap, meaning a grandparent server can sub for a parent server. A server can sub for a cashier, or snack cashier and vice-versa. Haven’t worked as a cashier/server before, ask for a quick training session from the Cafeteria Crew or from another team member. Jumping right in is the best way to learn!
  • If you’ve found someone to trade shifts using the Rosters within VSP, the volunteer willing to swap with you will need to submit a sub request and can state in the comments “Making a trade with (your name),  please disregard.”  You accept each other’s shifts in VSP.  
  • Make sure VSP sends a confirmation email of the reassignment.    
  • If VSP will not allow you to make the swap, it is likely a profile setting issue. Contact [email protected] specifying your trade details and the assignment will be made for you and your swapping partner.  


Propose a split shift

  • If you can work half your shift try to find someone that can cover the half, therefore, splitting the shift.  You could put this in your sub request notes in VSP. It will help people who may be able to cover part of your shift.  
  • You may find two friends that will split your shift. If you do find two people that will split your shift, please email [email protected] and the cashier/server coordinator of the arrangement.  It may not be possible to put that into VSP.


Accepting a Sub Request via Email

  • Once a sub request has been processed by the software, an email goes out to all available (qualified) volunteers for the position. 
  • To accept the sub request click the blue “volunteer now” in the email. Do not reply to the email.
  • Contact the volunteer directly through the email provided in the sub request.
  • If your sub request is accepted without a shift trade proposal by another volunteer, PAY IT FORWARD! Do a good turn for someone else who needs a sub.