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
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
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
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
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
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
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
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
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.
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
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.