Fears of Hiring a Virtual Assistant

New advancements are occurring in the field of technology day by day and it has deeply rooted in our lives and has change the way we think and react. It also has changed the spectrum of workplace and the cubicles we see a few years ago are in scarcity as more and more people are starting to work for themselves.

Due to such digital advancement, entrepreneurship is thriving and one can easily outsource a high quality, affordable support for him which wasn’t available a few years ago. Cloud based technology has also changed our attitude toward remote working and gradually, it is decreasing the need of hiring in house staff in order to access the top talent to grow our business.

There is no doubt that virtual assistant industry has opened new doors for people to get help for their businesses anytime they want but it has also been observed that they do have concerns due to which they fear of having a virtual assistant service conveniently.

Here are 10 Common Fears of Hiring a Virtual Assistant

1. Unsure What Tasks to Outsource

person with question mark

Seeing your business growth definitely motivates you to put more time and effort into your business to take it to the higher level but being alone and with the passage of time, it becomes hard to do all the work alone. You have to have some extra hand to help you in your day to day business activities.

The first question that will pop up in your mind is “What tasks should I outsource”? To find the answer of this question you should ask a few questions to yourself which will definitely help you to figure-out what tasks you need to outsource. Like;

      • Am I an expert in this activity?
      • Is it repetitive and time consuming activity?
      • What activities I tend to procrastinate?
      • Am I supposed to buy some equipment to do this activity?

After answering the above questions, I believe that you will have some clarity of what tasks you can outsource.

2. Sharing Confidential Information / Reliability

 

information privacy laptop button

One of the common concerns of entrepreneurs comes with the confidentiality of their business or sensitive information. But the necessity of the evil is that you have to share some information with your virtual assistant so that he/she can complete the task you entitled him/her to do but it’s totally your decision whether what information your virtual assistant can access.

By protecting your business or sensitive information with strong passwords and monitoring his/her activity on the provided system will surely reduce the potential risk of your sensitive information from being compromised.

3. Identifying Highly-Skilled Talent

man interviewing and sitting on chairs

Hiring a virtual assistant is no different than the traditional process but the important thing is whether a hired virtual assistant will really be a good fit for your business or not.

After putting your ads on the internet and going through the initial screening process, create a questioner subjecting towards your required skills set and schedule a one to one call to select the ones you think are close to your criteria or required skills set.

At this point in time, you will have a very favorable list of virtual assistants who you are likely to hire. But, before hiring, give them a trial period to see if they really fit in. In this trial period give them additional incentives to do a great job for you, knowing that it will lead to a permanent role on your team.

Now, you will be able to see who you surely can hire either for a one off project, monthly projects, or on a permanent basis.

4. Quality and Productivity

man walking on a productivity graph

You definitely want to see the effectiveness of the work you have hired a virtual assistant for. The good thing is that you have hired a virtual assistant to do some specific task/tasks which allows him/her to stay focused without getting bothered about the other activities happening in the company and you don’t even have to spend your valuable time and resources to train him/her as he/she is already skilled at completing what he/she does effectively and efficiently.

Moreover you can push the productivity even further by doing the following things;

      • Set clear goals and deadlines
      • Encourage them to ask questions
      • Let them know that they are a valuable part of the team or company
      • Have a daily or weekly meeting on skype, zoom, etc.

5. Communication Barrier

screeming and yelling child,

One of the primary concerns of hiring a virtual assistant is communication. It is perceived, if they are hired, they won’t even be able to understand the instructions they will be provided with to complete the tasks.

Fortunately in the current era, the concept of hiring a virtual assistant is flourishing and more people are interested in getting their jobs done remotely. With the increased awareness of outsourcing, they are getting amazed at how fluent they can speak English (or the concerned language) with a little or no accent.

6. Remote Accountability

Remote Accountability, Responsibility, Answerable

When it comes to accountability, trust is everything. It is expected that the hired virtual assistant will do his/her assigned tasks with full responsibility and own his/her mistakes. It is a matter of huge concerns for the employer whether the hired virtual assistant will make the best possible use of his/her time and honestly report to his/her employer as he/she will not be physically available to meet in person nor can be reached without the access of internet.

Not every virtual assistant run away from his/her accountability. Infect, a responsible virtual assistant go above and beyond to complete the assigned tasks to show his/her worthiness of being trusted.

7. Time Tracking

timer on a laptop

If the assigned tasks are ongoing or day to day basis than it’s quite important for the employer to know how much time a virtual assistant is spending on different tasks throughout the day as it will help both the employer and virtual assistant to calculate the potential effectiveness of the time spent on the assigned task.

Different time tracking systems are available and you (virtual assistant) can install the one your employer prefer and when it comes to billing your client, you should properly review your time spent, itemize your invoice and charge your client accordingly.

8. Time zone difference

men sitting showing day difference

Time zone difference is also a huge concern for the employers as they are hesitant to hire people from the very different part of the world even when hiring a virtual assistant from that part of the world is quite affordable.

But, there are virtual assistants who are willing to work on their employer’s time zone no matter what time is at their end. In general, time zone difference is not as big issue as it was considered before.

9. Affordability

money out of valet

It is a well-known fact that virtual assistant from certain part of the world are quite affordable but it doesn’t mean that they will be as effective as you think they would be.

Like if you hire a virtual assistant at $3.00 an hour, you will pretty much likely to receive the services you will not like or you may have to hire some other virtual assistant to do the same job again for you.

But, still there are tasks that can be outsourced at $3.00 like, gathering data from some website, internet search, cleaning some excel sheet, organizing some files, etc.

10. Time and Training Investment

man training and teaching

New technologies emerging day by day and sometimes it becomes a little difficult for your virtual assistant to integrate the assigned work with the new technology. It is perceived that the new technology is making the working process easier but sometimes, it requires a lot more time to understand what is happening behind the scene and or how that certain technology is really working.

It raises a question whether how do you invest in your virtual assistant? Definitely, investing in your virtual assistant isn’t cheap, but it’s worth it as investing in your virtual assistant can:

      • Create loyalty
      • Increase retention
      • Increase satisfaction and his/her morale
      • Boost company’s reputation
      • Build skill sets
      • Increase engagement in the workplace
      • Ensure future growth and long term success
      • Create a sustainable workforce
      • Create a positive company culture, etc.

Some final thoughts

In general, by adapting the change in the workforce, businesses of all sizes will greatly benefit of having a virtual assistant services. After placing a proper workflow and letting the remote staff to do their work, an entrepreneur will keep focusing on other activities that will help him/her generate more revenue.

Tips to Avoid Tax Scams Happening Through Emails

Technology has brought uncountable comforts in almost every aspect of our life. One of the aspects is communication. It can help you send messages or emails around the world for free in seconds by using the devices like cellphones, laptops, etc. No matter its personal or professional communication, you can literally do it from anywhere whether you are sitting in your bedroom or traveling via plane.

With so much comfort and ease of tech, the scam artists also find emailing a suitable way to reach their targeted people. These scammers adopt false identities like an IRS Agent, and send phony or phishing emails through which they plant some kind of malware into a person’s device to steal his/her personal and/or financial information which they use to commit identity theft either right away or later.

Tax Scams Happening Through Emails

These scammers send you a well-crafted email as if it’s been sent from IRS. These phony emails often attempt to entice the targeted person to click on the provided link in the email and when clicked on the link, it takes the user to a fraudulent website which appears legitimate.

Unfortunately, such phony or phishing email scams are often successful because people believe it’s really from the IRS whereas the IRS has clearly mentioned on its website that it will never ask for any personal or financial information of taxpayers through emails, text messages, or social media channels and it also has made a list of scams that targeting taxpayers. Plz! visit for more info.  “https://www.irs.gov/newsroom/tax-scams-consumer-alerts”.

Scams Targeting Taxpayers

Moreover, The IRS have even compiled the lists of common scams named “Dirty Dozen” that taxpayers may encounter anytime but many of such scams peak during the tax season. Plz! Visit for more info “https://www.irs.gov/newsroom/dirty-dozen”.

It’s hard to completely escape from the phishing email attacks but keeping the following points in mind will surely help,

      • Don’t reply to any doubtful emails
      • Try not to click on any ambiguous link in the emails
      • Never open or download the bogus attachments that come with these phony emails
      • Never copy and paste the provided link into your web browser.
      • Try using an authentic anti-virus as it will help you from downloading and installing malicious software into your devices.
      • etc.

Anyhow, the taxpayers are highly advised to beware of such deceiving emails designed to defraud them and refrain from sharing any information via the links provided in these emails and if you are doubtful about the contents provided in an email, report that email to IRS at “phishing@irs.gov” right away.

Tips to Save Yourself from Tax Scams

In today’s world, you can find scams everywhere and the prominent one is tax scam which can happen through different channels e.g. phone calls, emails, or even in person. The scammers claim to be from the IRS, start demanding your money right away, or demand your sensitive personal and financial information, or start threatening to arrest you.

Unfortunately, some people fall victim of these scams and give their hard earned money or sensitive personal and financial information to these scammers and don’t think you’re the only one who has become a victim of these scammers. Such aggressive, threatening phone calls, emails, or in person scams are occurring regularly across the country.

It doesn’t mean that there is nothing that can help you from being scammed. You surely can protect yourself from the most common tax scams by keeping the general but very important following tips in mind.

Pay your tax on time:

Pay your tax on time

It is for sure a good idea of making tax payments on time as it will almost eliminate the possibility of being scammed. And if you receive any phone call or email mentioning that your tax is due, you surely can report that anonymous phone call or email right away.

No Instant tax payment demand from IRS:

Instant Payment Demand From IRS

If there comes a time due to which you find yourself unable to pay your taxes on time then the IRS surely have payment plans for your convenience and will never call you to demand immediate tax payment. All you need is to request IRS a payment plan (short term or long term) to pay your taxes in full within the extended time frame with ease.

Plz! Visit for more info:  www.irs.gov/payments/payment-plans-installment-agreements

No Fabricated Ways of Tax Payments:

Fabricated Ways of Tax Payments

It is really important to keep in mind that IRS will never ask you to make your tax payment to an organization other than the U.S. Treasury. And it will also never ask you to pay your taxes by some unknown wire transfer or by buying them some gift cards etc.

The IRS offers several payment options where taxpayers can pay their tax liability.

Here are some ways to make tax payments:

      • Direct Pay
      • Credit or Debit Cards
      • Installment agreement
      • Mobile App

Direct Pay: with IRS Direct pay, taxpayers can pay their taxes directly from their checking or savings accounts for free and they will receive instant confirmation once they’ve made a payment.

Credit or debit cards: Taxpayers can also pay their taxes by debit or credit card online, by phone or with a mobile device. It will be free or some convenience fee may apply.

Installment agreement: Those who are unable to pay their tax immediately will be able to make monthly payments by having short term or long term payment plans.

Mobile App:  The IRS have also introduced an app named IRS2Go for making tax payments via mobile device. A taxpayer can use it to pay his/her tax liability.

For more Info. Plz! visit www.irs.gov/newsroom/easy-ways-to-pay-taxes

No Hostile Behavior by IRS:

No Hostile Behavior by IRS

The IRS will never conduct an aggressive and threatening behavior to immediately bring in police saying we will have you arrested for not paying the taxes. The IRS has its mechanisms in place to allow you to come forward to talk about the unpaid taxes. If you don’t want to go to IRS directly then talking to an authentic tax attorney can also help you learn about your rights and options.

Plz! Visit for more info:  www.irs.gov/newsroom/what-if-i-cant-pay-my-taxes  and www.irs.gov/taxtopics/tc201

Tax Scamming Emails:

Tax Scamming Emails

Tax scammers can also send you fraudulent emails to steel your sensitive personal and financial information. These emails are designed to look like legitimate and you by considering them authentic, can easily fall for them.

There is no simple way to completely avoid email phishing attacks. But the easiest way to avoid these scams is not to reply such emails and or by never clicking on the links that are included in email messages.

Tax Knowledge and Awareness is key!

Tax Knowledge and awareness is key

It is understandable that you (taxpayer as a layman), can’t have all the possible information about the tax system, (tax knowledge, tax complexity, and tax compliance etc.) but at least you should have some basic information about taxes so that you can save yourself from the scams that are happening across the country.

So, if you observe anything doubtful while getting prepared and filing your taxes by someone else, you should refer the IRS website “www.irs.gov” for more information and or call them directly to avoid tax scam.

Conclusion

Let’s face it, most people dislike tax season. It can be stressful, confusing and financially painful but learn how to protect yourself from the most common tax scams which may come in different forms.

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