April 20, 2012
The internet has created a new type of business where skilled self-employed administrative professionals work from their homes providing administrative and organizational support to clients who can be down the street or across the globe. These super organized business owners who specialize in client support are called Virtual Assistants.
Check out these 10 reasons why an increasing number of business owners are choosing to enlist the help of a virtual assistant:
1 – You have a larger pool of candidates to choose from and an opportunity to find some super awesome help.
If you’re just looking for an in-person assistant, then obviously you’re limited to what your city has to offer. If, however you open up your search to the entire nation or world, you can find hidden talent (or talent that you otherwise would not have come into contact with).
If you work in a very specialized niche, then having a wider pool of talent to choose from is essential in finding the best person to help you in your business.
2 – You don’t want to provide or share office space.
Virtual Assistants work from their own homes, so you’re off the hook there.
3 – You don’t need to provide a computer or other office equipment for your assistant.
Virtual assistants provide their own computer, phone, internet connection, printer – everything that you would normally provide if you were hiring a traditional assistant.
4 – You’re not asked to provide health insurance.
Virtual assistants are independent business owners – they are not employees, so you don’t need to provide the typical benefits that employers offer.
5 – You don’t have to need full time help.
Virtual assistants work a variety of hours, depending on how they’ve set up their practices. Don’t need 40 hours a week of help? That’s fine. Some virtual assistants will work 20 hours a month and some even less than that.
6 – You don’t have to be a boss.
Most of the time, small business owners are the ones who are looking for virtual help. They may be used to working solo, and you don’t relish the idea of suddenly becoming a boss or manager. If this is the case with you, then virtual assistance may be perfect for you. Higher caliber virtual assistants will be self-starting, self-managing and collaborative.
So, you don’t have to be “the boss.” Your relationship with your assistant can be one of equals who have different skill sets and who are both working to make your business run more smoothly and be more successful.
7 – You have someone to bounce ideas around with, and who will brainstorm ideas for new products and marketing tactics.
Most small business owners crave someone who knows and cares about their business who they can bounce ideas off of. Your assistant, who knows your business inside and out, is also the perfect person to notice marketing and business opportunities for you that you might not have noticed.
8 – You can continue to work in the privacy of your own home.
Sometimes your business is at a stage where you need extra help, but you’re not quite ready (or interested in) taking the plunge into renting office space. By working with a VA, you can continue to keep a low-overhead on your business by working at home, while at the same time gaining the assistance of a staff member.
9 – Some types of virtual assistants will help you organize the daily operations of your business.
When you think of a VA, don’t just think that you’ll be delegating work and that the VA will just be doing it. Some types of VAs are extremely skilled at looking at the overall operations of your business and can make suggestions on how to structure the daily operations of your business so that things run more efficiently. Rather than just getting some work off your desk, working with a virtual assistant can be an investment in the efficiency of your business.
10 – It may help to work with an assistant in a different time zone
If you have an internet business, your business is operating 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, and your customer base may be international. By working with a virtual assistant who is more in the time zone of your biggest customer base, you can provide better customer support, since your customers can be responded to in a timelier manner.
Virtual assistants live in all sorts of locations around the world. Some are very specialized in their niche, only working with people in certain industries, while others are generalists, interested in working in a variety of fields. Whatever your needs are, you can find a virtual assistant who will take a lot of stress out of your work, make your business run more efficiently, and be an integral part of your business success.
Sharon Sarmiento, owner of Streamline Virtual Office Solutions, is an AssistU trained Virtual Assistant. She manages the million tiny details that go into running an internet business and streamlines daily operations to make things run more efficiently. To learn more about how a virtual assistant can help you, go to http://www.sharonsarmiento.com