17 May 5 Points To Remember Before Hiring A Virtual Assistant
A great virtual assistant is a wonderful thing to have: He or she can field calls and emails, manage your social media accounts, and take time-consuming tasks like research and lead generation off your hands. That being said, hiring a remote worker is just like hiring a conventional employee in that it requires thorough research, consideration, and preparation. To ensure that you make the right choice, review the five points below before signing a contract with a virtual assistant:
Make sure your new virtual assistant is coming from a reliable source.
Many entrepreneurs automatically hire the virtual assistant who offers them the best “bargain” in terms of fees… And they end up sorely disappointed. When it comes to remote workers, it’s important to balance price with excellent qualifications and a sterling reputation. Ideally, you should hire a VA who is represented by an agency rather than choosing a random freelancer; while it’s a bit more expensive, agencies tend to have verifiable references and quality control systems in place.
Make a list of required qualifications before you start the hiring process.
Before you hire a virtual assistant, consider factors like whether or not he (or she) will need to have extensive knowledge of your industry, technical skills, specific accounting skills, etc. Not only does making a list of qualifications help you find a virtual assistant who has the right skills and knowledge to meet your needs, it will help your VA perform better, too. Having a clear set of expectations from the outset will ensure that your VA understands exactly what he should be doing, when he should be doing it, and which goals his work will be fulfilling.
Provide clear and thorough instructions.
Just because you don’t have to invest months into training a remote worker (as you would a conventional employee), that does not mean you should expect your new virtual assistant to be a mind-reader. He or she will still need to be provided with relevant information about your products and services and be given clear instructions on how to carry out his appointed tasks. Likewise, you should make yourself available to answer any questions your VA has about his new role.
Consider hiring more than one virtual assistant if you have diverse needs.
Some entrepreneurs make the mistake of thinking they can (and should) hire one virtual assistant to take care of all the repetitive and/or time-consuming tasks they don’t enjoy doing: Social media management, bookkeeping, scheduling, and so on. However, while this is possible, you’ll get better results if you hire multiple assistants who have specific skills and expertise. For example, you should hire someone with marketing experience to handle your social media accounts and hire someone with basic bookkeeping certification to manage your financial affairs.
Make sure you and your virtual assistant communicate well with one another.
Remember: Just like a traditional employee, your new virtual assistant will probably end up becoming a part of your business’s extended team. You therefore want to make sure that you can communicate easily with him or her and that he or she is a good fit for your company culture.
When approached properly, hiring a virtual assistant can revolutionize the way you do business. Virtual assistants help to eliminate distractions and keep essential business processes running smoothly, allowing the talent of your employees to truly shine. The only regret most business owners have after hiring a virtual assistant is that they didn’t do so sooner!