Business

The Benefits of Hiring a Virtual Assistant

The Benefits of Hiring a Virtual Assistant 27 Comments

Pam Drayton is a content writer for Email Finder an email search site, as well as a freelance writer for social media, tech and gadgets.

Virtual Assistants BenefitsDo you often feel as though there are simply not enough hours in the day to accomplish everything that you want to do?  Don’t stress about this fact too much, as you are far from being alone.  So many of the breakthroughs and advancements that were theoretically designed to liberate us have failed to accomplish just that.  Instead, many of us feel that we have less time to clear our schedule for the day.  One excellent way of addressing this problem is to consider hiring a virtual assistant.

What’s a virtual assistant anyway?

A virtual assistant, as the name obviously indicates, could be anywhere in the world.  Hiring digital assistants have become increasingly popular and for a surprisingly diverse range of reasons.  People, businesses and entrepreneurs are hiring people for everything from handling their social networking profiles to helping answer their emails with clients.  Virtual assistants have even been hired to handle dating profiles and set up dates as well!

Using a virtual assistant is “catching on,” as it can give individuals in need a way of allocating tasks and jobs that are viewed as being anything from vital to trivial.  The main point is that through a virtual assistant it is possible to greatly decrease your workload and, in the process, have an extra pair of hands to increase your productivity.

Why do I need one?

If you hire a skilled virtual assistant, you may also benefit from whatever skill sets and experience that your virtual assistant brings to the table.  Entrepreneurs and businesspeople looking to increase their profile and reach more prospective clients might wish to consider finding a virtual assistant who has worked in social media and promotions in the past.  After all, do you really want to pay for someone to learn how to effectively use Facebook or Twitter?  This isn’t the best allocation of your funds.

How can I benefit?

The issue of flexibility is at the top of the list of reasons that you should consider hiring a virtual assistant.  A virtual assistant does not have to be a full time or even part time employee.  This translates into cost savings, as you only need to pay a virtual assistant for the hours worked and the tasks performed.

Starting out slow with a virtual assistant in order to learn what he or she is capable of doing is a good idea and could lead to considerable rewards.  In time, you may discover that the virtual assistant that you hired is very competent, motivated and capable.  This could open up new options for you as well, as you may feel comfortable allocating more and more responsibility towards your virtual assistant.

If you are finding out that you are spending too much time managing and directing a virtual assistant, you have a problem.  At this point, you should act fast and terminate the working relationship and look for a different individual.  Remember, the reason that you hired a virtual assistant in the first place was to help you maximize your time, improve your business and your life.

Pam Drayton is a content writer for Email Finder an email search site, as well as a freelance writer for social media, tech and gadgets.

27 comments

  1. Pam, as a virtual assistant of many years, I loved reading your article. Thanks for pointing out the benefits of this type of service. Plus you’re absolutely right, if you are spending time managing your VA or chasing them for work you’ve requested then something is definitely wrong. It can take time to find the perfect VA for you but once you do they really can become a valued member of your team!

    Mel

    1. Pam Drayton says:

      You’re welcome, Mel! Thanks for commenting. I use VA’s all the time and virtual admin. assistants and they have helped me scale some of my projects significantly. I’ve had some that weren’t great fits, but I agree once you find someone who can sync well with your work style and priorities are aligned, it can be extraordinarily beneficial for both parties!

      Thanks again! Pam

  2. Hi Kostas,
    great advice. VA’s are handy when a person reaches that level of need. They need to be on the list of possibilities as a person’s biz grows.

    thanks for the info!
    Joe

  3. I totally agree with you on this topic!

    I hired a virtual assistant part time a few years ago and it didn’t work out.
    However, just this past spring I finally came to the decision if I wanted my business to really grow I needed help!

    I now have two virtual assistants in Manilla and it was the best decision I have made. It has really changed how I think about my business and now I can work on my business instead of in it.

  4. Pam Drayton says:

    Thanks for the comment Joe, glad you could find it useful! I think that VA’s aren’t advertised or talked about enough but they are a HUGE resource when you are growing a business.

  5. This was a great article and while there’s lots of stuff out there about “outsourcing” most of that is only at a high level. This article had some details to it that separates it from the other junk out there. I’ve been looking into getting a VA and the information here came at the perfect time.

    Excellent job and thanks for such a great article.

  6. Hi Kostas,

    Great points that you’ve shared here! I’ve only used a virtual assistant one time, I used fiverr.com and only paid $5. They did a decent job for what I needed at the time. I was able to read reviews on that person first so at least I knew that he had a good track record.

    Stacy

  7. Hello Pam!
    Very timely post for me. Doing it all yourself is downright impossible. I dream of all the things I can farm out to other folks. It’d be so nice to have an army of competent virtual assistants helping you out so you focus more on the business instead of the nitty gritty. I’m going about it slowly and letting it build on itself. Thanks so much for your tips!

  8. Hi Pam,

    I have never thought about hiring a virtual assistant, but I must admit the idea is tempting. There are only so many hours in the day, and the to do list just keeps getting longer. Thanks for posting this. I am going to give this some serious consideration.

  9. A wonderful informative article on virtual assistants. I often joke about how I need a personal assistant. I had no idea so many people used them. Now my question is….how do you go about finding a good one? How do you determine what to pay them? I may not be joking about for very much longer……..I really like the idea of outsourcing some of activities.
    Thanks a bunch!
    Lynn

  10. Hi Kostas,
    I agree with Lynn, once you have found her how do you assess she is the right one for you?
    I would be happy to find someone reliable taking care of my tweets and FB but again the time involved to check the work without any garantee the work was done as I wanted has made me skeptical me from taking such a decision.
    I have seen many of them offering their services and again the prices vary so much….
    Thanks for this article!

    1. Hi Patricia,
      Finding the right virtual assistant might not be very easy but it’s not that difficult too, the difficult part is how you manage your virtual assistants and giving the right instructions.

      Anyway the best way to choose the right one is to search for feedback of their previous employers (you want to find someone who is honest and hard worker) additionally you should ask to send you his/her portfolio or work history to ensure that he/she is capable of doing what you ask him/her to do (even if you need someone for data entry it’s much better to know that this va has done the same for someone else, this saves valuable time).

      As I said the most important part is what you are doing after you hire him/her, you can find a few tips in the link below: http://www.opportunitiesplanet.com/freelancing/managing-your-freelance-workers/

  11. Kostas I’m a complete advocate of virtual assistants. Probably because I used to have a virtual office business which I sold just over 2.5 years ago.

    I’m a great believer in focusing on what you do best and outsourcing the rest. However it’s important to know that it can be hard for some people to learn to delegate and “let go” and of course like anything there are some good VA’s and some terrible ones. So make sure you do your due diligence and test!

  12. Pam,
    With the online world, today we are able to build a great team regardless our physical proximity. I really enjoy employing a person instead of in staling a “cold” application.
     Very enjoyable read full of great info on the why of hiring a VA.
    ~Becca

  13. Hi Pam,

    I totally agree with what you said since I just wrote a post on hiring freelancers also.

    You do have to test the freelancers though before giving them something big to do. In my experience, it’s a hit and miss situation. So we need to be very careful. But this applies to the offline businesses also.

  14. Hello Pam, I like to hire different assistants to do different tasks, it’s a fabulous idea. I know what you mean about watching out for “managing” a VA too much, I’ve found people who want to be trained on things they pretended to know before I hired them.
    If they ask too many questions, sometimes it means they not the expert they pretended they were at the interview.

    Regards from Julieanne

  15. Running an online business, even as an adjunct to an offline business, takes a lot of time and technical know-how. It’s a great idea to hire someone who can help you with these tasks. And like Carla, you might not find the perfect person the first time. Don’t take that to mean that you won’t; keep looking. Even big businesses don’t always hire the right person the first time.

  16. It’s very important for an online businessman to have a reliable virtual assistant. Just in case that you can’t finish this alone, your virtual assistant may help you out. No matter if you are into online business or being hired to a very huge project, at least one or more virtual assistants may help save your time for good.

    Cheers!

    Dan Lew

  17. Pam Drayton says:

    Thanks everyone for all of your positive comments. I’m really glad that the article helped.

    I know some of you asked where specifically you can get a virtual assistant online which I wanted to address. As I mentioned in a previous comment, I use virtual assistants/virtual admin. assistants and I have found great success in using Elance.com. You can post an individual job and hire someone who enters a proposal, which works great in helping you find someone who is a great fit for you. Once you find someone you like, and have a good relationship, you can then go to them whenever you need anything done. Its a great resource for someone who is growing their business rapidly.

    Thanks all!

    Pam Drayton

  18. Helpful article, Pam!
    Hiring a virtual assistant have lots of benefits. It doesn’t only save you time but it is also cost effective since you don’t have to have an actual office for her. One tip though, for someone who doesn’t have that much budget, you might wanna consider looking in some lower income countries like the Philippines. I think you just gotta have to have an effective technique on hiring to be able to hire a great Virtual Assistant for as low as $3 per hour.
    One question you need to ask yourself before hiring is if you can trust them. It’ll take some time to trust a person especially with your credit card. Just make sure to check your statements often. And if he/she did steal money, you could have it back from the credit card company. It’s worth the risk.

  19. Jeffrey T. Sooey says:

    Hi Pam,
    Thanks for the article on virtual assistants. I must say I do have virtual assistants and they have helped me with the huge amount of work I have to accomplish. Like other employees though, you may not be successful with the first va you hire and like you said if managing them and directing them takes a huge amount of time then you will need to let go of this va and hire another as your objective is to improve productivity.
    I have been working with my va for more than a year and she has helped me extensively. The key is to lay all your cards on the table – be open and generate a timeline on the tasks you would like to be accomplished.

  20. You can take this to the next level by hiring a VA who has better insight in the areas in which you lack. Of course you need not make it obvious to the VA.

  21. I’ve tried several different VA’s over the last three years and I’ve had an extreme mix of results. I’ve found those that I take the time to train myself are more able to produce the desired results I need. One problem with VA’s is that they are often working multiple jobs at once, and taking the time to monitor their work defeats the purpose of hiring them in the first place.

  22. I agree with you Curtez Riggs, when you have a Virtual assistant on your business you will received a high end quality, but the problem is there are prone to work with other job.

  23. I am a busy person and I have outsourced my work to my virtual personal assistant in India(GetFriday) and it’s a great relief for me from the tedious works which I do.

  24. Thank you for the shared article.My virtual personal assistant is really helping me a lot and I know really the important and looking more for this kind of articles.

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