Hiring a Virtual Assistant has become the go-to for small business owners who need help managing their businesses but don’t have the resources (or the office space!) to hire a full-time employee.

There are many benefits to hiring a Virtual Assistant - they’re affordable, highly qualified, and are pre-vetted and screened by the virtual assistance agency. So basically, you get all the benefits of a full-time assistant and none of the risks. It’s a win-win situation.

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However, to ensure you make the most of your experience with virtual assistance, there are some things you need to keep in mind. Therefore, we’ve put together the ultimate list of everything you need to know before you hire a Virtual Assistant.

Who is a Virtual Assistant?

A Virtual Assistant helps your business by taking care of several backend tasks, giving you time to focus on growing your business. While earlier Virtual Assistants handled only administrative tasks, they are experts in multiple fields these days. You can hire a Virtual Assistant in almost every category - bookkeeping, event management, software testing, and more.

Virtual Assistants can be hired independently or through an agency like Wishup. At Wishup, we pre-vet and screen our Virtual Assistants and hire only the top 1% of applicants. You are assigned a client success manager to oversee the projects. In the rare case your Virtual Assistant is unavailable for work, we provide a no-questions-asked instant replacement, so your work is not affected. There is also no chance of your Virtual Assistant ‘ghosting’ you, as can often be the case with hiring independent Virtual Assistants.

Things to know before hiring a Virtual Assistant

Understand your requirements

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Often, business owners make the mistake of hiring a Virtual Assistant without fully explaining their job responsibilities. This can often lead to confusion and misunderstanding later on. To make the most of your professional relationship with your remote assistant, you must first understand which areas of your business will benefit from assistance.

For example, if answering emails and scheduling your calendar are taking too much of your time, hiring an administrative assistant can help you become more efficient and productive. On the other hand, if customer service is something you’re comfortable with, but finances are not your strong suit, then a bookkeeping assistant will be the best fit for your business.

Knowing beforehand what position you want to fill will help you narrow down your list of applicants and find the ideal candidate for the job. At Wishup, we provide all our clients with a free consultation to better understand their needs and pair them with the right Virtual Assistant.

Have a clear plan of communication

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When you are working with a remote employee, communication is vital. No, you don’t have to talk with them twice or thrice a day, but having a clear communication channel will ensure they are always available when you need them.

If you are comfortable with email or WhatsApp, you should look for someone who is also available on those platforms. Or you should be prepared to train them. Additionally, if your business uses a group communication channel, like Teams or Slack, it’s also essential that they are comfortable with using those tools.

We also recommend establishing a communication pattern with your Virtual Assistant. As we said, you don’t have to be constantly in touch with them, as Virtual Assistants are independent and efficient. However, a 15-minute call every day or every alternate day will help you receive updates and give them new instructions and directions, if any.

At Wishup, our Virtual Assistants fill out an end-of-day report, which makes it easy for you to track how they spend their time each day. We understand that you have a busy schedule. With these EOD reports, you can eliminate unnecessary interruptions in your workday to check on what your Virtual Assistant is up to.

Decide on project management processes

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When you’re working on your own or with an in-house assistant, you might be used to keeping notes of tasks mentally or calling your assistant to inform them. With a Virtual Assistant, this system might not be efficient.

First, there is a good chance your Virtual Assistant lives in a different country and time zone. Therefore, you might be unable to call them at all times, and sharing the notes in your planner might not be the most efficient or convenient way to get the job done.

Luckily, remote work has become the new norm in recent years, and multiple project management tools are available online that can help you allot and delegate tasks to your Virtual Assistant/s and track the status of these projects online without having to reach out to them.

After you hire a Virtual Assistant, you'll be able to track and monitor exactly what they're doing and when which will be really helpful. You can even schedule projects for the future and plan work ahead!

Asana is a great project management tool and is super simple to learn. Before you begin working with Virtual Assistants, they can provide you access to the project management platform they regularly work on. So if you don't know any, just reach out to your Virtual Assistant, and they will be more than happy to teach you.

Design a training plan

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Even though Virtual Assistants are highly skilled and efficient independent workers, they are still new to your business. Therefore, you need to treat them like regular new employees and ensure that ample training is given to them to ensure they are prepared for the job.

Training might take a few days or weeks, depending on the assignments that will be part of their job or the nature of your business. You will be required to create some type of onboarding in any case, even if they have previous experience working in an industry similar to yours.

This will enable the Virtual Assistant to execute tasks per your standards and expectations. This will also reduce the time they reach out to you asking for assistance.

There are multiple ways you can train and onboard your Virtual Assistant. It can be through presentations or even video meetings where you brief them about various processes. One of the most popular tools is Loom, where you can screen record different processes and give a voice-over explaining the work that needs to be done. You can also save these videos for any future Virtual Assistants you may hire.

As mentioned, at Wishup, we provide replacements in case your primary Virtual Assistant is unavailable. By making videos with software like Loom, a replacement Virtual Assistant will find it simpler to take up the workload if your original Virtual Assistant leaves.

Include a test or assignment in the hiring process

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You could want to create a test that Virtual Assistants can do in 10 minutes or less to evaluate their skills and competence. This will help you to assess a candidate's ability to follow directions, attention to detail, and other skills that will help you decide if they will make a good fit for the company. Additionally, it should be relevant to the task the Virtual Assistant will perform for you.

Whatever the task you assign is, make sure that it is relevant to your niche and the line of work that you will regularly assign them in their everyday duties.

Be reasonable and patient with your expectations

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It's crucial to set reasonable goals when hiring a Virtual Assistant. While the Virtual Assistant adjusts to your working style, expect a learning curve initially, as with any other employee. However, as time passes, your Virtual Assistant will definitely grab hold of things and deliver nothing short of perfection to match your expectations.

Another important thing to remember is that, similar to a regular employee, you will get the kind of service you are paying for. Virtual Assistants are already more affordable than full-time employees because there are no additional expenses such as insurance or office space. With a Virtual Assistant, you can save up to 78% in operational costs. Therefore, even a high-quality Virtual Assistant will cost you lesser than a full-time assistant.

At Wishup, we guarantee you will get only the top 1% of global talent as we personally screen, vet, and train our Virtual Assistants.

Set aside a trial period

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A brief exam and interview can only reveal so much about a candidate. It's a good idea to engage your Virtual Assistant for a brief trial period before signing a long-term contract. You could only require a week, or you might need as long as a month in some cases. You'll be able to determine whether you two will get along on a trial run.

The good part about a virtual assistance agency like Wishup is that there are no long-term commitments. You can sign up for a month or two to see if you are satisfied with the service. Then, if you feel like your Virtual Assistant and you are not compatible, we will provide you with a replacement at no extra cost.

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Maximize your productivity; hire a Virtual Assistant today!

A virtual assistant can make a great addition to your business and help you maximize productivity and profitability. We hope these tips will help you find the best suitable virtual assistant for the job. Or you can avoid these steps altogether by hiring from Wishup. Join our team of over 500 happy clients, and sign up for your free consultation today, or you can drop us a mail at [email protected]



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Swapna Ravichandran

Swapna Ravichandran

When I'm not writing you can find me curled up with a book & a cup of hot coffee, exploring the city's newest restaurants for my food blog, and spending any other free time I have on the beach.

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