Category Office Productivity

Hire a Virtual Assistant or an Employee? Which is a Better Option?

Hire a Virtual Assistant or an Employee

 

One way or another, your business will grow. By the time it does, you will realize that the more you work alone, the more it doesn’t feel like a business. Your hands will be tied to doing all the work when you already have the means to take the burden off of yourself and start expanding and growing more. So what’s the better option? Hire a virtual assistant or an employee?

 

The choice to whether hire a virtual assistant or an employee cannot be a rash decision. You need to sit down and consider your business needs. So let’s begin…

 

Should I Hire a Virtual Assistant or an Employee?

 

Comparison 1

 

If you choose to hire a virtual assistant, you will not think about securing healthcare benefits, paying employer taxes, pay vacation leaves or sick leaves, or even setup an office with complete equipment. Your virtual assistant will do all that for himself/herself.

 

The employee, on the other hand, is required to have healthcare benefits, paid vacation and sick leaves, an office equipped with tools he/she needed for work, life insurance, and others mandated by the labor law to employers in your location.

 

Comparison 2

 

Those who hire a virtual assistant do so because they only pay for the work hours or on a project basis. As a business owner, you have the option to choose how many hours your virtual assistant can work. You can also choose to arrange per project work setup or part time work on an as needed basis.

 

For your employee, you need to pay him/her by the time he/she gets her foot inside the office, whether you have work for him/her to do or not. You are paying your employee by the hours he/she spends in the office and not how much work he/she completes.

 

Comparison 3

 

One of the perks you get when you hire a virtual assistant is you don’t need to spend too much on training and onboarding. This is because of the fact that virtual assistants are highly skilled remote professionals who come to you because they know they can perform the job.

 

Employees are not unnecessary. There are things that an employee can do working at an office compared to a virtual assistant working remotely. For example, someone can greet visitors for you or fix the mess on your table, perhaps. Some employees have several college degrees and some have one or none. But all of them need training and onboarding so they can get into the same page as your company. This may mean hiring a certified coach or trainer to do that for you or having an entire HR department on your payroll.

 

These are at least three things you need to consider when deciding on whether to hire a virtual assistant or an employee. They both have their purposes, but you should choose based on the size of your company and how much you’re willing to spend.

 

If spending more on overhead doesn’t bother you as long as you have someone at the office to make you coffee, then hire an employee. But if you want to spend less but still get the quality you want and use the money you save on scaling your business even more, then you should hire a virtual assistant.

 


 

Want to learn more about how to hire a virtual assistant? Feel free to drop your questions in the comments or send us a message through our Contact page.

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How to Delegate Work to a Remote Assistant

How to Delegate Work to a Remote Assistant

 

If you can learn the power of delegation early in your business, then you will have saved yourself enough time to do big things and become successful. Today, it is easier and more convenient than ever to delegate work to a remote assistant.

 

As scary as it may seem to those who are new to this setup, working with a remote assistant has helped many small businesses take their products and services off the ground. Others have become more productive that they were able to accept more clients and grow their email list! Isn’t that amazing?

 

So how do you begin delegating work to a remote assistant?

 

1. Have a plan in place.

 

If this is the first time you are hiring a remote assistant to help you in your business then you definitely need a plan! You need to have a list of tasks or projects you would like to delegate. Your list will help you decide what type of assistant you’d be bringing onboard.

 

Your plan should also include how long you expect to work with the remote assistant and whether or not you need to get on a trial work period. Decide on a budget—how much you are willing to pay your assistant per month—and prepare a work agreement if you want to, although not necessary.

 

2. Schedule a time to meet online.

 

Meeting your remote assistant online through Skype, Zoom, or whatever call app you wish to use will instill confidence to both parties. During this first meeting, you could get to know each other and learn how you can both benefit from the work relationship.

 

Some projects may not require a meeting; sometimes an email would suffice. You will have to work it out with your remote assistant. The purpose of the meeting is to make your assistant feel valued and part of a team, if you already have a team (virtual or not).

 

3. Agree on a work process.

 

Will you be sharing documents through Google Drive, Dropbox, or Asana, for example? Do you prefer to receive weekly invoices every end of the week or twice a month or monthly? What will your main communication channel be? How can you contact each other in case of emergencies or, say, in case of power outages or loss of internet connection? How often would you like your remote assistant to send you an update about his/her work progress?

 

4. Prepare to train your remote assistant.

 

Training is often not necessary when you work with a remote assistant because he/she comes with all the skills you need to perform the job. But in case you have a platform that he/she may not be familiar with, then prepare a video tutorial. Processes that are only known to your company/business should also be taught. Most often, training will only take a short time for a skilled person.

 

5. Give constructive and appropriate feedback.

 

At the start of the working relationship, when your remote assistant is still learning the ropes of your business, it is helpful to give regular constructive and appropriate feedback. This will help him/her understand your business better and improve based on your feedback.

 

Once he/she gets the hang of things, you can stop with the feedback, although from time to time, it would be good to give words of encouragement and appreciation for the work he/she does.

 


Want to know what tasks/services you can delegate to a virtual assistant? Click here.

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10 Free Online Tools to Manage Your Business

10 Free Online Tools to Manage Your Business

Starting and managing a business is time-consuming as well as expensive. Thanks to technological advancements, there are numerous free online tools to help alleviate this problem. And they don’t cost a dime!

 

Hootsuite

Hootsuite is a social media management tool. It schedules bulk posts, tracks mentions, and the number of your social media followers across all platforms. It also tracks specific posts generating the most clicks and allows you to interact with your followers.

Its free plan is for 1 user, 3 social media profiles, and 30 scheduled messages, which is sufficient for any small business. This is one of the free online tools that is worth trying.

 

Canva

You might be an excellent business person, but chances are you are no graphic designer. Posters, marketing flyers, social media graphics, and brochures have to be crafted to improve your content’s visual appearance.

This is where Canva comes in!

With access to over 80,000 templates, up to 1GB photo storage, millions of photos starting at $1 each, or the option to upload your own photos, creating graphics like that of a professional designer is a possibility. There will be learning curves but they are not as hard as when you need to learn Photoshop or other graphics design tools.

 

Mailchimp

Mailchimp comes with a built-in sign up, a drag and drop email template to customize campaigns, and a manage contacts feature. Its built-in sign up form (usually placed on the website’s sidebar) easily collects and imports subscribers.

It has a free plan suitable for small businesses that are starting out or companies with few subscribers as it permits sending 12,000 emails to not more than 2000 subscribers monthly. Make the most of these free online tools.

 

Google Keyword Planner

In this age of technology, a strong digital presence is crucial. Google Keyword Planner helps generate hundreds of long-tail keywords using the Google autocomplete so you can structure your content around words used most by your target audience. This, in turn, helps your website rank higher on search engines subsequently increasing traffic to your site.

 

Evernote

Evernote allows you to take notes, store information or text, pictures, memos, files or audio, keep a journal, and allows sharing files with your clients and/or colleagues even if they don’t have Evernote accounts.

It automatically syncs across all your devices so you can always access it anywhere, anytime. In the event your phone dies, everything saved in Evernote will remain intact.

 

Trello

Trello is a project management tool which enables you to track your team’s files, tasks, and information all in one place. You and your team can log in and report how you’re progressing with your projects.

Its free plan permits attachment of files up to 10MB, one power-up board, and access to unlimited boards, cards, lists, members, and checklist.

 

Hubspot CRM

At some point, managing customers will become tedious and things like customers’ contacts may slip through the cracks. Hubspot CRM automates and simplifies customer management. There are some free online tools similar to this but start with Hubspot CRM so you get to learn how systems like this works.

Hubspot CRM provides everything needed to track, organize, and nurture customer leads. It’s easy to use, has email tracking feature, stores up to one million contacts, and allows an unlimited number of users.

 

Dashlane

Dashlane safely stores all your passwords and personal information. Its free plan allows you to store up to 50 passwords, fill personal information so you won’t have to repeatedly enter it, and receive security alerts all on one device.

 

Wave

Clients have to be paid, invoices have to be sent, and accounting is time-consuming, not forgetting, quite a headache.

Wave manages transactions, tracks income and expenses, creates and scan invoices, and directly scan receipts into the system. Payment and payroll services is offered in its premium plan which costs $19/month.

 

Free images

Written content with visually appealing images get more engagements and clicks. However, you can’t just go to the web and pull out a picture – lest you want to be embroiled in copyright infringement legal issues. Professional stock services, on the other hand, are pricey.

Fortunately, sites like Pixabay, Flickr, Unsplash, and FreeImages have thousands of free non-copyrighted images. Next time you need an image for your blog post, head on to these sites.

There you have it – 10 free online tools to manage your business. Most have premium plans, by the way. Should the need for more features arise, upgrade to paid plans.

 


Want to hire a Virtual Assistant who knows how to use these tools to level up your productivity? Get in touch!

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