Remote work is becoming increasingly popular and because of valid reasons. Be it a crisis like a global pandemic or a company’s need to scale business operations quickly, organizations around the world are banking majorly on the golden resource called the virtual assistants.
No matter what you need help with, administrative work, schedule management, personal task management, data entry, content creation, or business research — a virtual assistant can be your ninja employee rescuing your over-stressed time and helping you share your workload.
Before you hire virtual assistants, it is natural to face dilemmas about the entire process. Here is an array of things that might be useful for you in your virtual assistant hiring expedition.
Choose Tasks and Processes That You Need To Outsource
Every single business has an extensive list of tasks and processes that are involved in running the entire show. To decide which ones to outsource and which ones to keep doing yourself, start by categorizing them based on these grounds:
- Tasks you should do — tasks that you perform effortlessly good
- Tasks you should not do — tasks that kill your time, even if you’re good at them
- Tasks you don’t want to do — tasks that you don’t enjoy doing
- Tasks that you can’t do — tasks in which you lack the required expertise
With these categories, you would realize the kind of work you would want your hired virtual assistants to perform.
The Job Description
Once you have the list of tasks ready, create a job description for the role that will be responsible for these tasks.
The ideal job description should include:
- Your business’ background based on the industry, product/service, and your clients
- Educational and professional qualification requirements
- A list of duties and responsibilities
- A table of apps, tools, or software that they are expected to use
Post Your Job Description Online
Once your job description is ready, your next step is to post it online. You can choose to post your job ad on various social media platforms or job portals. Another great option is to use a virtual assistant hiring service or a directory.
You would start receiving applications soon after you post them since applicants keep searching for jobs in such online spaces.
Applications and Interviews
Start reviewing the applications and schedule interviews with the top candidates. Use video calling for the interview as it is the next best thing to interviewing someone in person. You can figure out pretty quickly about a person on video communication.
You can prepare a list of questions based on the key responsibility areas of the tasks. Preparation always makes the process easy no matter at what side of the table you are.
Test Candidates Through A ‘Test’
Before you hire a specific candidate, give your top 2-3 candidates a task to complete in form of a test. Choose a type of task that would be a part of their regular responsibilities and observe how well they perform in it.
Often, communications can be misleading so it is safe to be reassured. Asking your candidates to perform a real task will help you determine who is a top candidate.
Create Training Material
For the hired candidates, make sure you have a customized training plan based on their job description. Create a documented training manual and a standard operating procedure that clarifies the task, methods, and objectives for the outsourced assistant. You can keep a PPT handy or a PDF guide for the training purpose.
Start a Trial Period Initially
Start with a two-week trial and let them know about it. In the course of this period, let them prove their skills and reliability to you. This would help you determine if you made the right selection. Since this is a trial period, it won’t be absurd if you have to let them go at the end.
Be Clear About The Working Hours
While you thoroughly explain what the job entails, do not forget to tell them about the hours you expect them to work. It can be damaging as well as frustrating not to be able to reach someone when you need them. So make sure that you outline the time duration when you need them to be available.
It is indeed important for you as an employer to supervise if the virtual assistant is expectedly performing the task. To track the tasks, build a system that can make the communication transparent and easy to correct in case it requires any changes. Online timesheets or daily reporting can be helpful here!
Onboard The Selected Virtual Assistant And Manage Your Work Efficiently!
It is essential to understand that outsourcing requires time, preparation & guidance to process it all in the correct direction.
When you hire a virtual assistant, you are hiring a team member. And while hiring a team member who is going to complete a major chunk of your daily tasks, you need to prepare a checklist that can make the entire process untroubled and smooth.
It is always better to customize and club a checklist before you start hiring a virtual assistant for yourself!
Rangoli Roy works as a Content Specialist for a BPO company based in India named Acelerar Technologies. In her free time, she loves to express her creativity through poetry and art. You can find her spreading positivity through her art on her Instagram Blog called ‘thepoetesswithblackbindi’.