How to Get Started with Your Virtual Assistant

Thinking about hiring a virtual assistant?

It’ll be one of the most important hires you make as an entrepreneur. A Virtual Assistant will be there to delegate specific tasks so that you can focus your time and energy on your business rather than in it.

It’s also how you will transition from being a solopreneur to an actual business owner. A business owner doesn’t do everything by themselves—they put together a team to delegate tasks to. A Virtual Assistant is the first step to creating that team and growing your business.

Before you hire your first Virtual Assistant, you should understand what you’re getting into. After all, it’s a big decision since they will essentially be representing you.

Keep reading to learn all the things you should know before working with your first virtual assistant.

What Exactly Does a Virtual Assistant Do?

A Virtual Assistant is someone who provides you and your business with the necessary support, remotely. Theoretically, they can do just about anything except bring you your coffee. There are technically two types of virtual assistants: the general and the specialized. 

The General VA can take on the daily support tasks important for running your business. These types of tasks would include managing your e-mails, managing your schedule and appointments, data entry and research, and even taking care of your social media posts.

The Specialized VA will have a special skill set that will allow them to oversee the more specific processes of your business. This skill set would include customer service, bookkeeping, video and photo editing, and project management.

Above all, a virtual assistant is a problem solver and someone who understands business. They have the tools and the skills to help you succeed.

How Do I Hire a Virtual Assistant?

The first thing you want to do is create a list of the tasks you want to outsource. Be specific, prioritizing the tasks you want to delegate first. Think of anything that is tedious and takes up too much of your time. Managing e-mails, for example, would be a task to delegate because it doesn't make you money and it's time-consuming.

The next thing you have to do is choose an assistant. You can find virtual assistants on a freelance platform such as Upwork, or you can hire through an agency like us. If you hire a freelancer, you’ll have to invest a good amount of time into training them. Your VA is a human, not a robot. You’re going to have to explain to them how you want everything done.

Once you’ve chosen your Virtual Assistant, make sure you have systems in place for them to follow. They’re good at what they do, but they’re not mind readers. The systems should be like an instruction manual—like how and when you would like them to answer e-mails and schedule appointments, for example.

If you leave them hanging without any direction, they’ll need your input consistently and you won’t get to focus on your business. Add to their tasks slowly, so that they’ll have the time to adjust to all of your systems.

It helps to create a specific job description that gives brief details about the job as well as your requirements. This way, you don't have to go through hundreds of unqualified assistants just to find one that checks all of your boxes. 

What Are the Benefits of Hiring a Virtual Assistant?

Having a Virtual Assistant virtually by your side comes with a number of benefits.

They’ll save you time. Time is the most valuable thing you have that cannot be bought. Hiring a VA means more time to focus on growing your business rather than wasting time on low-level administrative tasks.

They’re cost effective. That's right, they’ll save you both time and money! This because they’re contractors, so they’re not working for you from 9-5 every day. You also don’t have to give them benefits or pay them over time. You also don’t have to pay them for hours that they’re not working.

They have plenty of skills. As mentioned before, a Virtual Assistant isn't limited to entry-level administrative work. Many of them have the specified skill set to take care of your inbound marketing, SEO, content, social media, web design, not to mention customer service. It’s almost like having multiple employees in one.

They’re 24-hour workers. Well, technically. Your Virtual Assistant will work around your schedule. So, if there is something you need at the last minute, it’ll most likely get done. You can also hire more than one Virtual Assistant for different needs. 

They’ll help you grow your business. Having somebody handling your mundane tasks for an economical price not only frees up your time to focus on the important things, but it helps you expand. The more time and money you save, the more you can invest into your business and finding clients—which is ultimately what will enable your business to grow.

They’re as flexible as you need them to be. They may be “24-hour” workers, but that doesn’t mean you have to utilize them for 24 hours. You can have them work a much or as little as you need without having to pay them full time.

They can work “overseas”. You don't have to hire locally. You can hire a Virtual Assistant in a different time zone, which is a great idea if you want to expand globally. It’s also convenient for when you want things done “overnight”, or if you want 24-hour customer service for your business. 

They’ll give you peace of mind. Having a Virtual Assistant means no more missed calls or opportunities. You can rest assured that while you’re focusing on the core tasks at hand, they’re taking care of the rest. 

As you can see, the benefits of hiring a Virtual Assistant are nearly endless

Get Ready to Grow Your Business

Hiring one or more Virtual Assistants will make a big difference in your life and business. Remember, if you choose to go solo, you’ll be handling all of the work, which will take up most of your time. 

If you're interested in learning more about how to grow your business as an entrepreneur, there are plenty more tips on our blog.