The estimated reading time for this post is 5 minutes
When it comes to hiring staff for your business, there is always a transitional period of adjustment. If you are struggling in your business and need an extra pair of hands, it’s the right thing to be considering the pro’s and con’s of hiring a VA and it’s normal to ask if they will improve your productivity, add value and be a help, not a hinderance. Read on to find out some important insights to hiring a VA.
Anyone who runs their own business (and is responsible for staff), will tell you, ‘Time invested is time well spent’, but only if the person you are teaching is willing and wants to work hard for your business.
Employing the right people
Unlike employing a member of full-time staff (or part-time), where they have no previous experience and need to be taught from the beginning, a VA will come onboard armed with certain knowledge in areas that you are weak. This knowledge of applications and software, is often the reason for a business like yours to hire a VA in the first place.
Identify the problems
In order for you to benefit from a boost in productivity, you need to allocate time to explain what areas of your business cause bottlenecks in your workload.
Remember, your VA has the advantage of having worked for numerous companies and has come across many problems, which they can quickly identify and improve for you.
It’s a skill in itself, to teach someone how to do your job. Almost every single company owner and director will say, they are unable to find staff who are as committed and passionate as themselves.
The difference with a VA (compared to a normal member of staff, employed directly by your company), is they are sub-contracted.
They are (in most cases) fully committed to you, and your business, as their role within your business and the success of their involvement within it, is ultimately vital to their own business.
Your success is their success.
Your VA needs to understand the way you work in order to apply their knowledge to improve your working situation
Your VA will be up to speed, far quicker than a normal member of staff.
They only need an overview of your working methods and the processes you adopt, in order to initiate their plan of action.
Problems solved with other client businesses, often recur in businesses like yours.
If a solution has previously been solved, it’s a case for the VA to identify how to implement and apply the solution to your business.
Quickly and efficiently, you will begin to see the benefits of hiring a VA and the boost in productivity you seek, will be apparent.
Two Way Communication
It’s common for a business owner to be distracted by the day to day operations. We understand, it’s normal.
It is important for you to allocate the time necessary to explain your problems and discuss ways to solve them.
Consider some of the following:
- Book time in your calendar and allocate 30 minute slots to discuss work with your VA
- Switch your phone off during meetings / turn on your answerphone
- Turn off your email / add an autoresponder during meetings
- Avoid distractions and make the time allocation worth while
We understand, you don’t wish to miss that important phone call but know this. They will phone back.
Write down areas of concern
Whether you are at the stage of hiring a VA or you already have, writing down areas of concern, will help you.
The smallest of niggles when working with email, CRM’s, word and excel files etc can be easily improved if you write the problem down and discuss within your ‘booked in meeting with your VA’ ….
Not using a calendar yet? Get one, it will boost your productivity no end!
Financial Benefit of Hiring a VA compared to hiring staff
Before you hired a VA, ask yourself this:
- How long do you spend thinking about a problem and how to solve it?
- How many searches have you made in google to try and find the answer?
- How many books have you bought / read to try and solve the problem?
- How much time do you think you have wasted?
There comes a time when you have to recognise, that you simply can’t do everything.
The hours in a day go quickly and our time needs to spend wisely. Your time as a Director and ‘Key Player’ in the business, needs to spent wisely to generate new business.
It’s time to pass tasks onto someone who can alleviate the day to day burdens
- Keep a note of the jobs you hand over to your VA
- Consider the time it would have taken you to do yourself and calculate the revenue these efforts have generated. This is your revenue estimate.
- Calculate the cost of your virtual assistant by taking the time you previously spent on the tasks you handed over and multiply that number by an average cost (£35/hr is a good average.). Subtract this cost from the revenue estimate and you’ll have a good idea of the revenue opportunity.
But this isn’t necessarily the end of the story because we all know that effort doesn’t always equal revenue. So while you can do this basic cost analysis the bottom line isn’t always the bottom line.
Boost Productivity = Boost Profits
The benefit of using a Virtual Assistant increases with time. As you become more confident in their abilities you’ll stop worrying about the back office function and this gives your mind the energy and space to think more creatively and the freedom to refocus your efforts on planning and growing your business. You’ll have more time to nurture clients and more meet with prospects.
Your business will be more organised and you’ll regain control.
So, by all means use this tool to conduct a quick cost analysis but be mindful of the fact that not everything has a price tag.
Need some advise?
Pick up the phone and call me on 01223803666, I’ll be delighted to have a chat about whether hiring a Virtual Assistant is the best choice for your business.