Running a small business is a dream come true for many people, but as business starts booming, burgeoning entrepreneurs find themselves face to face with a nightmare: the overwhelming volume of administrative tasks involved in working for yourself. To cope with this reality, many of our clients have hired Valerie Assistants a virtual basis to help manage some of the day-to-day operations of their business.
However, there’s still much confusion about what a virtual assistant is and what he or she does for business professionals. To answer some of the questions you might and figure out if hiring a virtual assistant might be the best for you, check out the handy guide below.
Who should think about hiring a virtual assistant?
Running a business involves a lot of administrative tasks – preparing paperwork, answering emails and phone calls, keeping up a website. Many small business owners find this stuff to be unpleasant and become frustrated when it begins to interfere with other, more important facets of running a business. If you find yourself increasingly bogged down with phone and computer-based work that you could easily train someone else to do, it might be time to consider hiring a virtual assistant.
What sorts of tasks can a virtual assistant help me with?
A virtual assistant, as the term implies, is an office professional that works remotely. While this means virtual assistants are not physically present in your business, given the increasingly web-based world we work in, they often don’t have to be. Virtual assistants do the same tasks as traditional assistants, such as:
- Manage your calendar and schedule meetings
- Find and order products and services
- Keep your contacts list up to date
- Deal with customer service, utilities, airlines, etc.
- Handwrite personal notes and cards
- Organize your photo library
- Create digital photo books
- Order gifts online and have them shipped
- Order lunch for you and your colleagues
- Answer emails and phone calls
- Prepare paperwork (invoices, payroll, etc.)
- Create employee schedules
- Interface with clients over the phone or using Skype
- Create and maintain a company’s website
- Keep up with a company’s social media sites (Facebook page, Twitter feed, etc.)
How do I hire a virtual assistant? Business owners and busy professionals have many options when it comes to finding a virtual assistant, but before beginning the search, it is important to figure out exactly which tasks you plan on having your assistant complete; it is probably also helpful to estimate how many hours you think this will amount to each week. This way, you’ll be able to give the VAs you interview a clear picture of your expectations.
Hiring a virtual assistant is a great way to keep your business running smoothly – keep these tips in mind when considering whether a virtual assistant is right for you.