Hiring a Virtual Assistant

 
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You’ve been steadily building your business, growing your customer base and developing your products and services.

It’s been going well and as the founder/owner, you’ve learned lots about every aspect of running a business. Importantly, because it’s just you, you’ve been able to steer things in the exact direction you want.

However, as you’ve become busier with customers, your own life has become correspondingly busier. You’re getting pulled in several different directions and little things are starting to slip as your focus has to go on more important priorities. Either that, or your free time (what free time!) has disappeared and you no longer have quality time available for the important people in your life.

There are several ways this could go. You could keep going as you are and either burn out or become a full-time workaholic. You could delve into the world of becoming an employer and recruit someone to join your team. Or, you could look at hiring a Virtual Assistant to take some of the pressure off your shoulders.

But where on earth do you start with finding such a freelancer? Someone you may never actually meet in person, but that you feel comfortable enough to trust with your business?

First things first

Before you even start looking for a person, you need to identify exactly what you need.

  • Outline the tasks

  • Define the timeframe (is there a deadline for the work to be completed)

  • Work out how many hours will be needed

  • Look at the skills required

It’s not unlike the information you need to pull together when recruiting an employee (ie. job description, person specification). My Virtual Support page will give you a good idea of the type of tasks you can delegate.

When you’ve defined your project, you can start searching for the right person to work with you. You could try freelance job sites (eg. Upwork, People Per Hour, etc), search on Google or use your network and ask for recommendations from friends and colleagues.

To help you get the best out of your search, here are 5 tips for you to consider:

5 tips when hiring a VA

1. Start small

If you begin by delegating minor tasks, you’ll a) get into the swing of passing work onto somebody else, b) learn the best way to communicate with your VA and c) find out if things are working without it having a massive impact on your business.

2. Check the fit

Does the person have a good enough internet connection? Is having somebody working on the same time zone important? Do they have the required skills? Do they have good recommendations and testimonials?

3. Be specific

Give details of what is required, guidelines for completion, access to any background files and full information on deadlines for the work to be completed.

4. Communicate

Agree with your new VA how often you will be touching base with each other. Is it weekly? The start and end of a project? Daily? By agreeing these things in advance, it will take away any ambiguity.

5. Use their skills

You’re hiring a VA to complete a particular task, but they may have experience of doing this for another client, giving them valuable insights into the best way for it to be completed. A good VA can become your right hand person and someone for you to bounce ideas around with.

Bonus tip

If you’re hiring somebody to work with you on an ongoing basis, agree a probationary period. You’d do that with an employee, so it makes sense to do the same with a new VA. Deciding on a month for example gives time for both you and your new VA to see how things are working out - and if they’re not, a mechanism for parting company with no hard feelings.

Hiring a VA will mean that you can stay focused on the things you are best at and it will give you more time to spend with family and friends.

Get in touch or add to the comments below if you have any questions.

Need some help?

I can help you to create more time and space in your life.

If you’re ready to reach out and find a VA to help manage your business, check out my Virtual Support services and get in touch to chat about your project.

 

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Hi, I’m Jacquie and I provide words, websites and virtual support for small businesses with big messages.

Get in touch to chat about working together.


 
Jacquie Budd