5 Quick Easy Steps to Hire Your First Virtual Assistant

Here’s how to hire your first virtual assistant without wasting time — Define your needs. Know your budget. Create an SOP. Set expectations. Test that relationship.

We get it, you want to chase that vision and do everything possible to quickly get there.

But did you know that by not delegating, you’re making the biggest mistake for your company?

In a world of diverse business environments, where technology is continuously thriving and social media is a centerpiece for connectivity and information, outsourcing a virtual team is becoming more of a strategy rather than a convenience.

In 2019, the global outsourcing market raked around $92.5 billion. And a huge chunk of that trend is coming from a steady-growing industry referred to as “freelancing” or virtual assistants.

Regardless of the scale of operation, business owners and entrepreneurs understand the value VAs bring to the table.

So, if you’re set to hire your first virtual assistant, you’re in luck, because we’re about to explore the processes of hiring one.

What is a Virtual Assistant?

A virtual assistant is an independent contractual worker who provides a myriad of administrative, technical and creative services to companies and entrepreneurs from a remote location.

Basically, they offer support so that you can have more time to concentrate on growing your business.

How Do I Prepare to Hire a VA?

If you’re constantly working more than 60 hours a week, then you’re badly in need of some virtual assistant saving.

But don’t rush the process just yet; before you start scouring the internet to hire your first virtual assistant, you need to go through some steps to make sure your new hire becomes your greatest asset.

  • What Are Your Needs?

    Okay, you’re in it to hire your first virtual assistant to increase productivity.

    Still, it is essential to assess the situation first, before making a move. That’s to say, you must read your everyday workload, and think of the areas in your operation where a virtual assistant can be valuable.

    Do you need someone to handle your schedule? Customer support? Social media? Market research?

    Put in some time to create a job description, outlining the responsibilities and skills required for the role. By doing so, you will be able to find the VA that meets your needs and aligns with your vision.

  • Know Your Budget

    Doing the math on hiring is necessary to ensure efficient resource utilization.

    Virtual assistant rates vary from one person to the next. There are several things to consider such as skills, experience and location. Therefore, if you need someone well-trained with highly specialized skills, then better prepare to pay up more.

    To make a solid case for your hire, you need to know if you can afford them or not in the first place.

  • Create an SOP (Standard Operating Procedure)

    Among the set of steps, you should do right with this one —a well-written and thorough document that describes the step-by-step process of how to complete a task.

    If you can craft a solid SOP from the get-go, you’ll get your desired results with little training all while ensuring efficiency and quality output.

  • Set Expectations

    When we say “expectations,” we’re talking about the expectations on performance and communication.

    Flare up that excitement and schedule a chat with your candidate to go over some things they need to know to proceed at a fast pace with lots of enthusiasm and energy.

    This step can be taken as an onboarding call of slowly integrating your new hire into the organization.

  • Test that Working Relationship

    It’s easy to say “YES” to a promising candidate with a spectacular portfolio and completely forget about this one critical step.

    We recommend doing something different when you’re about to hire your first virtual assistant. Try doing a test project related to the actual job, just to know if they can play the part and communicate well — who knows, maybe they’re not up to your standards after all.

    Also, it’s worth mentioning that it doesn’t always boil down to the quality of work. Sometimes personalities don’t click. So, it’s important to give a month of probation to decide if it’s right to sign up for a long-term collaboration.

To Get Started as a Virtual Assistant with No Experience?

Nothing quite stirred the traditional workplace environment more than COVID-19.  The unprecedented surge welcomed a new corporate norm; a standard that made the 9-to-5 workday needless.

Leaning towards a flexible working style — virtual assistant is today’s trendy strategic card, a career that is becoming more and more appealing to many.

So, if you’re interested to jump ship, but are afraid because you lack experience, fret not. You can become a virtual assistant even without prior VA work — you just need to plan ahead.

  • Identify Your Skills and Consider Specialization

    The path to being a virtual assistant begins with you determining what skills you have. So that regardless if you have zero experience, you can still showcase your capabilities to your possible client.

    The typical virtual assistant skills that could be your strength include:

    • Communication Skills
    • Time Management
    • Organizational Skills
    • Flexibility
    • Being Proactive
    • Being Tech-Savvy

    While having these basic skills gives you a chance of getting hired, you can ensure a win by focusing on a specific niche. In this way, you can get a higher pay rate and enjoy client retention.

  • Ready Your Toolkit

    Though tools vary, all VAs need a laptop, a headset with a good microphone and a strong internet connection.

    Depending on what sort of services you offer, you need to prepare the equipment to complete and deliver those services.

  • Prepare Your Documents

    In the same way, you apply for a regular office job, you need to prepare the following job application documents.

    • Resume: With no experience, you should focus on skills that are relevant to the job role you are applying for.
    • Cover Letter: Introduce yourself and explain why you want to be hired. A cover letter is a good remedy for someone who doesn’t have any experience. You can show off your skills and work ethic instead, demonstrating your fitness for the role.
    • Portfolio: Say you’re applying to be a content writer; you can put together articles or any written pieces that you’ve ever written. You don’t necessarily have to compile everything, just the ones that are relevant to your client’s branding and activities.

  • Do Some Marketing

    If you want to stand out to your potential clients, you have to market your services. You can use social media or a professional networking platform like LinkedIn to make yourself visible online. You can even create your own website if you have the skills, and showcase what you can do.

    The main thing is to focus on building relationships and networking.

How Do I Find My First Virtual Assistant Client?

Now that you’ve done every step to set up your career as a virtual assistant, it’s time to land your first job.

Honestly, every VA finds its first client in different ways. Just always remember to pick out the right ones that identify your ideal clients.

Here’s how you’re going to win your first virtual assistant client.

  • Build a Resume

    It’s rather difficult to get hired without a resume.

    The perfect resume contains all the relevant information and skills and presents the qualifications that’ll get your potential employer captivated with the idea of working with you.

  • Create an Online Presence

    Your own website and social media handles are the two main channels where you can build your online presence.

    If you want credibility and to appear authentic, having a website helps a lot. You can create one using easy-to-use website builders over the internet like WordPress or GoDaddy.

  • Reach out…Connect… Network

    Aside from running your own website and social handles, you can further promote your services by reaching out, connecting and networking with a variety of sources.

    • Fellow Virtual Assistants

      You can reach out to fellow virtual assistants who offer similar services.

      Who knows, their schedule might be super packed. And they might be looking for someone to partner with or to refer clients to.

      Even VAs who offer different services from yours could be your point of contact since they might be approached by clients, they can’t assist but you could.

    • Past Clients

      Your past clients can give you an opportunity to get more work. You can offer your services to them or they can refer you to some people.

    • Join Communities

      You can join any clubs or organizations that relate to what you do. This can help you get posted on new jobs and even gain some experience by offering voluntary work.

Ready to Hire Your First Virtual Assistant?

Working with a virtual assistant is your secret weapon, meeting your unique needs while offering flexibility and cost-effective support.

So, find that VA and transform how you do business entirely.