Do you know how many choices you make daily? Weekly? It may raise an eyebrow or two but a recent study conducted by a group of scientists and reported by TEDGlobal speaker Sheena Iyengar says about 70 choices a day is typical for the average American. Now think about CEOs who are engaged in 139 tasks a week and just 50% of their choices are made within 9 minutes while 12% take an hour or more of their time. Good thing you have a virtual assistant ready to give you a helping hand with your tasks on the first call.
In case you don’t then there is one more choice you simply need to make and a hard one suppose you have no clue where to start and where to apply for virtual assistant services.
Let’s make sure you’ll promptly choose the most effective way to locate a right-hand tech-friendly administrative assistant. This choice you’ll make easily and it won’t falll into your hour plus or even day plus category but rather in 9 minute category once you know available sources.
Social Media Networks
Most individuals have Twitter or LinkedIn accounts what opens an access to a wide pool of candidates. Upon posting in LinkedIn or tweeting about a virtual assistant position you will instantly receive referrals or messages from your prospective task managers. You get free 24/7 access and a possibility to follow your candidates, learn more and observe them in rather informal environment before choosing your best fit.
However, this approach hardly earns trust or gains popularity as the first place of call in search of candidates. Spending time to build relationship with people whose profiles may not be a fair reflection of their true nature and qualifiactions is a bleak prospect. And it doesn’t improve upon contemplating how little or even non-existent responsibility or loyalty individuals approached via social media networks bear to their recruiters.
Virtual Assistant Directories
VA Directories or online referral services are more like informative portals where virtual secretaries from India, Phillipines, USA, Europe network to collaborate in search of a certain effective solution, discuss common challenges. This is a place where you can hit many qualified virtual assistants, though asking for a referral from previous employer would be a wiser step.
We already know from another ingenious experiment that when there are 24 varieties of jam on offer, people get confused and often tend not to choose anything at all. If that one could be unsettling enough just think about having to choose between countries (in India, Ukraine or/and in Philippines virtual assistant should preferrably reside) whole continents (is the best place to source virtual assistant Europe or Asia). Not exactly knocking over with feather in view of sheer abundance of freelance platforms.
To launch a successful freelance career some independent contractors may choose to conjure up a personal marketing strategy that implies building a personal website with implemented virtual assistant services, rates, digital portfolio and generating leads via social media networks. More often than not they follow a well-trodden path by posting and replying to job ads on freelance platforms such as Upwork, Freelancer, Craiglist, Guru, PeopleperHour, SimplyHired, Damongo, Fiverr, FlexJobs, Genuine Jobs, Toptal etc. All you need to do is sign up, post your task or project, set the price and wait for bids that usually come fast and furious offering virtual assistant services. Based on your criteria you do research of your own studying your candidates, viewing their profiles that showcase past work experience or a skillset backed up with portfolio and display of test results. These platforms feature freelancers working in your country or beyond offering an opportunity to choose a virtual assistant from India, Phillipines, Ukraine or any other location you have in mind.
Still, a lot of hassle comes with hiring freelancers since vetting process is time-consuming enough and sometimes unjustified given that you barely invest into a viable employer who’ll be a great asset to your business for years to come. It is not unheard of that freelancers tend to juggle a few projects at at time leaving some less lucrative tasks or more difficult halfway. Hopefully, yours will uphold core values of professional ethics because only that far is your control over an independent contractor.
Virtual Assistant Companies
Companies are another “to-go” resource for virtual assistants hunting. They are known to retain all the pros of freelance platforms:
Broad geographic coverage
American, European and Asian companies offer professional administrative services. India and Phillipines have long occupied top ranks in the lists of popular business outsourcing destinations until they started to yield their positions to Europe. When it comes to hiring a professional virtual assistant, India or Phillipines find it hard to maintain a lead due to certain objective reasons.
Ease of use
Registration forms are usually quite simple. All it takes is filling in basic generic information, picking a monthly plan and submitting a task with clear instructions.
Varying virtual assistant rates
Depending upon a country and nature of virtual assistant services, rates vary immensely. When contracting a virtual assistant from Phillipines you pay more than in some European countries, say when contracting a virtual assistant from Ukraine. For example, you’ll get efficient help and dedicated specialist at your service for rates starting as low as $6 per hour once you hire a virtual assistant from Ukraine.
Rigorous screening of candidates
You get even better end of the deal when collaborating with companies. Let’s be honest, it takes time, effort and steady nerves to find a candidate that will meet your expectations to the full. No wonder there is a whole HR Department responsible both for carefully screening candiates and maintaining their high professional level by, let’s say sending them to advanced training courses. VA company owners make no mistake thinking that their clients seeking administrative help expect to get a productivity-gaining partner who will shave hours from their workweek not the other way round. Furthermore, leaving mid-project is no longer an issue once you contract a VA company. Being an in-house employee of a VA company, your virtual assistant and a company itself are bound by legal responsibilities to one another and a client.
Now, think carefully for a little while, weigh up you risks and narrow down your options to the one that accomodates perfectly to your needs. One more thing, while you are deep in your thoughts making up your mind remember that finding a virtual assistant (Europe or Asia makes no difference) is a breeze but locating a skillful and responsible specialist means you are facing the chill wind. Ready to make a choice?