What is a VA? When and why outsourcing your work to a Versatile VA is smart business decision
Are you trying to do wear all the hats in your business and yet somehow the dream of owning your own successful business is looking different to the reality?
Have you been dreaming that someone could swoop into your business and rescue you from the mountain of paperwork, emails, digital filing, social media, copywriting and the rest? A person you could trust to keep the business running while you are away for work or pleasure?
It’s likely that you need a virtual assistant! These highly skilled and efficient professionals are the ultimate multi-taskers. They make your life easier by helping your business run more efficiently.
But what exactly does a Versatile virtual assistant (VA) do? What are the benefits of hiring one? And why do you (and your business) need one?
What is a VA?
When I am attending networking events, parties or even when I’m at the shops and someone asks “what do you do?” and I respond with “I’m the proud owner of a virtual assisting business”, the next question is always “What is a virtual assistant (VA)?”
So, let’s start by answering this question with a basic definition:
Please take note of the word ‘person’ NOT robot – if you are looking for the automated robotic type of VA. The one with no personality or soul, you have come to the wrong place! I bid you farewell, as we at Versatile VA have plenty of both. 😉
If you have read The 4-Hour Workweek by Tim Ferriss. Virtual assistants were an integral part of the 2007 bestselling book. Ferriss claimed to have hired virtual assistants to pay his bills, check his emails and run parts of his company.
In fact, in a 2018 report by BankWest Curtain Economic Centre “Future of Work in Australia” “11.6% of the Australian workforce are independent contractors, equivalent to around 1,270,000 workers.” An increasing number of these workers are virtual assistants.
What work can a Virtual Assistant help with?
Virtual Assistants skill sets vary, some are generalists, some specialists and others management VA’s. Some of the most common jobs they perform include:
- Office administration
- Secretarial work
- Data entry/spreadsheets
- Appointment bookings
- Database management
- IT services
- Social media support/marketing
- Graphic design
- Photo editing
- Sales and Marketing
- Inbound & outbound phone customer support
- Website design/management
- HR Admin
- Project Management
With technological advances and the ability to perform vital business functions in an office less environment, there are incredible benefits VA’s bring to businesses.
Why should you hire a VA? What are the Benefits?:
There are a multitude of benefits when hiring a Versatile virtual assistant. Here are a few:
1. The standard 9-5 business day does not apply
Owning your own business has peaks and toughs. Sometimes you need a piece of work done urgently. Or you want to maximise efficiency by utilising additional hours outside of your standard working hours to give your business a brilliant competitive advantage.
This is but one of the perks of having your own VA. (It’s important to note, most VA’s charge an urgency fee for work which requires an urgent turnaround.) However, pre-arranged after hours work, is how we roll.
2. You value your time
When you wear all the hats in your business, it can often lead to stress and overwhelm. It often means something isn’t being done with the level of focus it deserves.
While you most likely have the skills necessary to complete both the administrative and specialised tasks. It’s been proven when we are stressed or not at optimum energy, our executive and critical thinking skills suffer.
If your rates are higher than your VA’s, consider how you could be making more money by working on your core business function. Having your own VA creates space for you to work smarter and devote your workday to the key areas of your business requiring your full focus and energy.
3. Increased productivity
Imagine a rainy day, traffic is delayed, moods are lowered, and irritability increased as the average employee makes their way into the office. Dripping wet and cold they start the day with probably a less than a go getter attitude. You are now paying for them to make a coffee and have a chat with their colleagues about the traffic, the rain, their weekend and so on.
Alternatively, with no travel time a VA is ready to work, possibly donning some attractive Ugg boots, but with a vitality that is unequalled by any rainy day, peak hour traffic suffering employee. Employees can also cost an employer money and resources in non-productive time.
A VA will time track their work, clocking out for toilet breaks, coffee breaks and everything else which is NOT working on your project or task. That means you receive 100% productivity.
We are also business owner’s and have a vested interest in your business’s success. Our business model lies heavily in repeat business and referrals from happy clients.
4. You only pay for work on your project
Many small businesses have peaks and toughs in busyness, so too their need for business support. The good news is, as your VA is an independent contractor, you can negotiate the terms of their engagement to work within these peaks and toughs. You are no longer paying for twiddling thumbs.
New research, conducted into Australian business productivity by Nitro, revealed; out of the 1000 Australian workers interviewed, productivity pain points costing businesses included:
- 43% felt wished they could reduce meetings
- 70% said they lacked proper training
- 54% impacted by negative workplace culture
- 48% delayed by outdated technologies and systems
An employee earning $80,000 costs a business $5000 in unproductive hours.
Your own VA works productively as:
- There are no distractions with broader organisational meetings.
- They are trained and qualified to perform the tasks, or will draft systems and processes as you show them the ropes.
- They provide their own computers, anti-virus, software programs etc and can easily adapt to the systems the hiring company uses.
- There are no negative cultural issues to distract them from being passionately focused on achieving brilliant results for their hiring company.
5. Timezone advantage
Some VA’s work across alternate time zones as another productivity offering. Working around the clock to maximise business productivity. Versatile Virtual Assistants work in Australian NSW time zone. As we only service Australian businesses we can take calls, hold meetings, schedule calendars with ease, because are always only a few hours apart from all the states and Territories. There are some tangible benefits of hiring an Australian VA for your business rather than an overseas counterpart.
6. Reduced operational costs
Virtual assistants are independent contractors so that means you don’t have to pay for:
- payroll taxes
- annual leave
- sick days
- Office space
- worker’s compensation
- other employee benefits
- equipment costs
- paid training or bonuses.
As we cover our own expenses, you simply hire a VA to perform a specific job. Pay them for their service, and that’s it. Hiring a VA is a big money-saver and a clever investment decision.
When should I outsource?
Whether you’re an entrepreneur or an executive, time should always be regarded as a valuable commodity. With many balls in the air, how you manage your time will determine your level of productivity. Thus, the best time to hire a Virtual Assistant is now! You might especially want to hire a VA if:
- You’re overwhelmed by your current workload.
- You want a collaborative business support, so you’re not doing it all on your own
- There’s a backlog of blogs to write, filing, data entry & emails to action or you need someone to manage a project
- You want to use your time more productively.
- You need something done but don’t have the skills or time to do it.
If any of these situations apply to you, there’s no doubt you could get the help you need from a qualified VA. Find out more about outsourcing effectively.
You might think you can’t afford a VA if you have a start-up, or don’t need one if your company is already established, but VAs can be game changers for almost any business. After all, there is truth in the saying, “time is money.” If you spend more time supporting your business instead of building it, you’re not maximising your efforts.
Now that you know how beneficial a VA can be for your company, what’s stopping you from hiring one?
With our versatile experience covering over 20 years’ in several industries and business functions from management, contracts, compliance, project management, office administration, blog writing, social media and more, we are more than equipped to assist. More than that, Versatile VA’s genuinely care about your business and its success. We invite you to check out our business services. Whatever type of business you own, we are confident we have the skills to make it run even better. We will be your behind the scenes secret weapon.
At Versatile VA you can access customer centric, experienced virtual assistants and online business managers any time you need it without the costs of having an employee. By staying focused on your core business function and outsourcing the rest, you can free up your time for personal breaks and scale your business. We look forward to working with you in the near future!