Best Practices for Hiring the Right Virtual Assistant for Your Business
Hiring a virtual assistant frees up your time, adds new skills to your organization, and allows your business to scale up. It’s a natural step for solo entrepreneurs who are ready to grow. Things are much easier with a skilled VA at your side, but the first challenge is finding the right person.
Skills and Experience
Start by figuring out exactly what you need done. What skills and experience are necessary to do the tasks you want to outsource? Clarifying this will help you create a job ad that will attract the right kind of help and it will weed out those who don’t have the skills you need.
Set Your Budget
Decide how much you’re willing to spend to hire a virtual assistant. You can pay them a recurring salary or for each individual project they do for you. Some Virtual Assistants offer their own pricing packages. You should put the payment details in your job ad to prevent the back and forth of negotiating on payment terms.
Location and Language
Your virtual assistant can be located anywhere in the world and some countries offer cheaper rates than others. As part of the specifications of the job, decide on location and language. Keep in mind that if your VA is on the other side of the world, you’ll need to arrange times to communicate. You should also consider whether native-level English is a must. Note: Cheaper does not always mean better.
Browse For the Right VA
Before you write and post your ad, look around at virtual assistants offering their services online. This will give you a good idea of what they are proposing and the going rate. You may also want to look at VA job ads to get ideas for writing your own.
Short List Applicants
Once you post your job ad, start a list of applicants who meet your criteria. Look at each one carefully and narrow it down. Once you have a few who you particularly like, make contact with them. Ask for samples of the kind of work you need done if applicable. You can also vet them by asking for references and talking to past clients. Sometimes its nice to start with someone new in business. Because of this, they may offer beta rates while also providing top notch services since they are attempting to make a name for themselves.
The Final Decision
Set up interviews with applicants who seem suitable. Ask them about their work experience and skills, but also get a feel for their personality. You’ll need to create a good connection with this person, so it’s important that you can communicate and that you get along well.
Determine standards for the work you need done so your VA knows what exactly what you expect. Design step-by-step processes for the key tasks you want your VA to handle. Go through each one to examine how you do things now and in what order, and lay this out in a document. For example, you might turn the information into a checklist or flow chart. Even consider recordings to cater to various learning styles.
Think About Scaling
As your business grows, you may need a virtual assistant with additional skills. Think about this when you hire someone. They might have other skills that you can use in your business in the future.
Keep in mind that hiring a virtual assistant is a process. It’s not always easy and there could be problems that arise.
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