Entrepreneurs and business owners always want to save money and continuously look at the bottom line. Therefore, they are prone to try and do every task themselves. However, this could be your down-fall.
On the home page, I give THREE main reasons for hiring a virtual assistant. But I have had many queries on why it is necessary. I believe that all reasons are rolled into these three main reasons:
#1: SAVING TIME
Time is a commodity nowadays, so wasting it can cost any business dearly. How much time do you spend every day on “busy” work like checking emails, answering phone calls, or managing your website? Most entrepreneurs are experts in their field, but not necessarily in every field. Hiring a Virtual Assistant, who handles the nonessential tasks for you can be very cost-effective, as you have the time to focus on the more technical side of your business, i.e. growth. There is no constant re-training or educating (which can be costly) of employees as you can choose a VA who already has the necessary skills.
You will also find that in the standard 8-hour workday, the average employee does as little as 3 hours of actual “productive” work. Why pay for staff to discuss the weekend’s antics? VAs do not have the distractions of an office environment and can focus solely on the task at hand. The only goal they have is to get client satisfaction and therefore it is extremely unlikely for a VA to miss deadlines. They are highly motivated and will increase productivity for any business owner.
The above leads to increased flexibility. As VAs do not have a specific schedule, they schedule their work around the client’s timeline. The business owner is never stuck in the 9-5 workday with a VA which in turn helps them to widen their market. As VAs also have a wide network of other VAs, you can be assured that should they not be available, they will be able to assist you with finding one that can help you on short notice.
One of the most important aspects of any business currently is to have an online presence. But not only the presence is necessary, but you also need to interact frequently with your customers via social media or your website. This will strengthen your brand, but at the same time, if you do not respond within a reasonable amount of time, the damage can also be done. This is where a VA can be a huge benefit. They can focus on the essential things and increase your involvement with the customers. They can create, post, and respond on your behalf, as well as collate any responses that they see you need to follow up on.
#2: COST EFFECTIVE
These two words are of the utmost importance to any entrepreneur and business owner. The first very obvious reason for hiring a VA instead of a full-time employee is the reduction of labour costs. This means no employee benefits, including taxes, sick days, annual leave, medical, etc. payments need to be made as they are independent contractors and responsible for these payments within their own business.
With acquiring the services of a VA, a business owner can also reduce the risk in scaling operations. What if your business is at a point where you are not entirely sure what the next step is going to be? It looks like the business might be growing; however, it is not 100%, or you do not have a clear timeline of the growth. Taking on unnecessary employees could be a very costly exercise. This is when you can acquire a VA to assist you with any extra workload (or maybe even more than one), making sure that you don’t break the budget and are not tied down by contracts. VAs have contracts that you can cancel at any time and you do not have the added stress of redundancies, etc.
The numbers are pointing towards growth, but you don’t know when or how quickly that will happen.
Should you be in the above “dilemma” and your business is growing, a VA can further expand this growth for you. If you give the VA a complete understanding of your business ethics and policies, they can share ideas with you. A business owner will soon notice a substantial growth in production when in full collaboration with a VA.
Although most businesses are going towards optimizing processes by automation, the “voice support/service” will never completely disappear. Most clients and customers still prefer to speak to a person, and this gives any business identity and reputation. This is, however, one of the most time-consuming tasks and that is where a VA comes in. They can make calls to obtain quotes; connect with clients, business partners; find out information or fix appointments on your behalf.
The last most important thing to mention within this benefit is that you pay according to the requirement. VAs tend to have different quotes, but most will charge you only for the time it requires them to do the actual project or task and they strive to provide quality service. Their whole business relies on providing productive results while delivering value to clients.
#3: FOCUS ON BUSINESS
As mentioned at the start, entrepreneurs tend to try and do everything themselves, but this is the biggest downfall. I have learned from experience that as an entrepreneur, you need more time to focus on your core business functions. You need to take note of the things you can not do yourself and the things you SHOULD NOT be doing on your own. There are several tasks that the entrepreneur can outsource to the VA including market research, data entry, email management, online marketing, content writing, web design, and so forth… This list is extensive, and I will write about this in a follow-up blog. VAs can reduce the stress for any entrepreneur by organising these tasks and completing them in the required timeframe. As a result, the entrepreneur can focus on the more important aspects of the business.
VAs can fill any skills gap in your business. Say for example you are not a marketing guru; you can hire a VA that has a wide range of expertise in this area. Most VAs tend to use technology to their advantage; therefore, they tend to have extensive knowledge of the latest online tools that you can use to accomplish a task in a shorter time period. And the best news – most of the tools they recommend are for free.
Any business owner knows that confidentiality is key, and VAs are known to guarantee confidentiality. They act on your behalf and will ensure that they protect your interest and the business’s reputation.
I want to end off with one main reason for hiring a VA, which is not entirely within any of the three reasons above, but of the utmost importance. You, as a business owner or entrepreneur have more leisure time when you make use of a VA. By making use of your VA and handing over the tasks that take hours, you reduce unnecessary work time, and you have more time to spend with your friends and family. Although all entrepreneurs and business owners want to make sure 100% that their business will succeed, one thing that can happen is burn-out, so spending quality time away from the “office” is a MUST.
No-one is Superman, okay there are actors that are cast in the role, but nobody has all the skills rolled into one. That is where Virtual Assistants can come in very handy. Contact me today to discuss any needs you might have, and I can see how I can assist you to streamline your business and free up your time.