Have you ever asked yourself, “What is arbitration?” “Why is it important to teach my stake about arbitration?” or “What role do I play in arbitration as a stake indexing director?” Many stake indexing directors around the world are wondering the same thing. Read more about their experiences:
“Teaching the stake about arbitration is important, because otherwise the indexing work of each indexer would not be able to progress further. Arbitrators are as important in this work as indexers. One of my goals is to have many arbitrators in our stake, so that the amount of indexing we do in a year can also be arbitrated. If every stake would do this, there would not be so much of a backlog in arbitration.”
D. Richter, from Zürich, Switzerland
“Arbitration is an essential step in indexing. Without arbitration, the work of two indexers would remain incomplete. These records cannot be published without arbitration. It is important that arbitrators are meticulous and adhere to the rules of indexing. My role as a stake indexing director is to encourage people in their tasks, to set goals, and to choose new arbitrators.
R. R. Ortiz, from Seville, Spain
“As a stake family history committee, we decided to strive for a balance of arbitration and indexing. First, I assessed all those who had gained experience in indexing and invited them all to work through the arbitrator tutorials and widen their experience. I received reports back from each person about their willingness to become an arbitrator. I credited any who met the standards and who were willing to become an arbitrator. In all of this, it must be remembered that these indexers or arbitrators are volunteers. They must not feel under pressure, but at least they should feel they are part of the team effort at whatever quantity they submit.”
E. Sharpe, from Cheltenham, England
“Teaching about arbitration is important. The faster records are arbitrated, the faster they will be available to be researched. As stake indexing directors, we have as much responsibility with indexing as with arbitration. We are supposed to encourage both indexing and arbitration.”
A. A. Leal, from São Luís, Brazil
“Make sure you understand record matching. We should be able to teach our arbitrators how to properly record match. I find I have to go to the arbitrator’s home and demonstrate it often. This is such an important step of arbitration. Also, show them how to find the project instructions, the basic indexing guidelines, and the field helps. Encourage them to know these rules well. I tell them to do some indexing first for each new project and see what their arbitration results are.
J. Keys, from Victoria, British Columbia
“We also need to tell them to check the project updates frequently to see if there are any changes to the project instructions. I try to teach my arbitrators to check the updates a couple times a week, because you never know when a rule will be clarified or changed. Arbitrators need to know the project instructions because they make the final call before the records are published online.”
D. Durfee, from Palmer, Alaska
As a stake indexing director, your calling is key to making records available on FamilySearch.org. As you recruit and train arbitrators, more records will be published online, and more ancestors will be found. Here are a few tips to get started:
- Practice, practice, practice: How can you help other arbitrators if you have never tried arbitration yourself? One of the most important things you can do to understand and help arbitrators in your stake is to master arbitration yourself. Consider going through the arbitration mentoring program to receive personal training and answers to your questions.
- Record matching: Record matching is an essential step of arbitration and is something all arbitrators should understand. Make sure you and your arbitrators are familiar with this process.
- Maintain balance: Strive for a balance between arbitration and indexing in your stake. Arbitrators should also continue indexing so they are familiar with project instructions.
- Where to get help: Here are a few additional resources to help you learn more about arbitration and how to prepare your stake.
What have you done to help the arbitrators in your stake? Do you have other questions about arbitration? Leave a comment below, or email us at firstname.lastname@example.org.