My Top Tips When Searching For A Great Virtual Assistant.

Mar 13, 2018 | Time Management, VA Services

What You Should Consider When Hiring A Virtual Assistant

Virtual assistants can help you get more done because they work on your to-do list, while you work on the high value tasks that only you can do.

Once you have understood the benefits in hiring a Virtual Assistant, and what that can mean for your business, you then need to search for one that is not only reliable and trustworthy, but one that will compliment your own work style and has a level of experience in doing the tasks you need doing.

Some people have good and bad experiences.  But finding the right Virtual Assistant can be tricky if you are unsure what tasks you need them to do.

1.  Are you ready to hire a Virtual Assistant?

Many business owners are sold on the value of having a Virtual Assistant, without knowing exactly what they could delegate to them.  They just know they need help, but with what, they are unsure.  That can be unproductive and costly and frustrating for both parties.

Having a clear idea of tasks you need support with would be a great start.  Decide which tasks you particularly enjoy doing and wish to continue.  There will also be tasks you can’t wait to see the back of, and some that are non-negotiable, you have to do these yourself.

Take a look at my Delegation Exercise to help you identify what you can outsource.

Some Business Owners use tools to keep track of daily tasks.  I use the ‘Todoist’ app which is integrated into my Outlook.  I receive calendar (and email) reminders daily, weekly or monthly of what I need to do.  With my Email Management service this is something I could help manage too; your to-do list.  See my Services page.

If you are not clear what you need support with, then a good Virtual Assistant would usually offer a complimentary consultation to understand your business, learn what your objectives are, discuss your own work style and what level of support you may need.  I offer prospective clients a 30 minute free consultation.

2. Create solid systems.

I once read an article about a business owners great experience in hiring a Virtual Assistant.

He used to record an episode of a podcast and needed to have it edited.  At first, he did all the editing himself, but once he mastered that entire process, he made a training video showing exactly how to edit the podcast.  He then turned that video into a written training manual.  He used a Virtual Assistant with digital transcription experience to type the podcast recording.  I actually really enjoy this client service!  Here’s my Blog about how Digital Transcription could be so good for your business.

The point here being, understand your own systems and how they work.  Be prepared to offer a Virtual Assistant training on the software you want them to use.

Virtual Assistants are incredibly flexible and have a real thirst to learn new skills.  There’s a ‘free’ screen recording tool called Loom; you could use this to record a tutorial and send it via email to your Virtual Assistant.  It’s something to think about when you feel you are the only person that can do that task.

Show a Virtual Assistant how to use your systems!

2. Create solid systems first!

I once read an article about a business owners experiences hiring a Virtual Assistant.

He used to record an episode of a podcast and needed to have it edited.  At first, he did all the editing himself, but once he mastered that entire process, he made a training video showing exactly how to edit the podcast.  He then turned that video into a written training manual.  He used a Virtual Assistant with digital transcription experience to type the podcast recording.

The point here being, understand your own systems and how they work.  Be prepared to offer a Virtual Assistant training on the software you want them to use.

Virtual Assistants are incredibly flexible and have a real thirst to learn new skills.  There’s a ‘free’ screen recording tool – you could use this to record a tutorial and send it via email to your Virtual Assistant.  It’s something to think about when you feel you are the only person that can do that task.

Show a Virtual Assistant how it’s done!

3. Select your Virtual Assistant wisely.

Some Virtual Assistant’s are not as good as others.  It isn’t uncommon for those with very little experience to reflect this in their low rates.  However, it is a surprise to me how some fabulous Virtual Assistants still struggle to acknowledge their true worth to business owners.  So, how do you find a great Virtual Assistant?

You research!  Don’t just settle for one that charges £5 per hour; I am sure your business is worth more to you.  You need to find a great Virtual Assistant that ticks all the right ‘skills, working style, availability, personality’ and of course ‘cost’ boxes.

If you have ever interviewed before, you may have discovered that quite often, only 10% of applicants are worth hiring.  Those 10% are likely to have a solid background and experience in the role for which they applied.  You would want to see their CV and job references, wouldn’t you?  I am sure, however, you would rather hire a great calibre member of the 10% team and pay their worth, than settle for one of the 90%.

 

To quote another business owner:

Most Virtual Assistants (not all, if they are starting out) have great testimonials.  Often you can connect with them on social media e.g. LinkedIn, to see their career history and what praise their Clients have given to date.  You can see mine here:  My Linkedin profile and I would be happy for you to send me a connection request.

Virtual Assistants are business owners and work with you, not for you.  They have a desire to succeed and are incredibly ambitious.  You will likely find a Virtual Assistant has the qualities that can support you in driving your business forward.

If you would like to get in touch and arrange a chat, please drop me a message at shirley@virtualofficebox.com

Shirley

Some of The Tools I Use

Asana, Adobe Pro DC, Buffer, Canva, Dropbox, Evernote, Gmail Calendar, Microsoft Office (Word, Powerpoint, Exel, OneDrive), Hootsuite

LastPass, Linkedin, Outlook, RecurPost, Twitter, Facebook, Lumen5, SurveyMonkey, Todoist, Trello.