5 Questions to Ask Yourself Before You Hire a Virtual Assistant

This is post number 3 in the introductory VA Series. It is recommended that you read “What in the World is a VA” and “Why You Need to Hire a VA” before reading this post.
questions to ask before hiring a virtual assistant

I hope you are enjoying this introductory series into the virtual assistant industry. This week we are talking about the important things you need to take into consideration before hiring a VA.

Not all VA’s are created equal. Some general VA’s charge lower rates while more specialized VA’s tend to have higher rates. However, do not be misled by rates. After all, inexpensive does not mean cheap and likewise, a higher price tag does not guarantee greatness.

In order to find a quality VA, you need to develop a process that will allow you to separate the good from the bad. As with anything, you will encounter the good with the bad and must turn each experience into a lesson for the future.

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Here are five things to consider before you hire a VA:
  1. What services do you want to outsource?

Having a clear list of services/tasks will allow you to clearly define the scope of work and the conversation between you and a potential VA will go much smoother. You may not know all the details, but at least knowing where you need assistance will help a VA determine how to best assist you.

2. How much are you willing to spend on outsourcing?

You must know your budget. You must know how much you are willing to invest in virtual support. A bigger budget will allow you to hire a more specialized VA who may be an expert in one thing instead of a doer in many things. Likewise, you may just find that your current budget only affords a general VA who can help you with a multitude of projects. Work within your budget. As I said before a more expensive rate does not guarantee better service and vice versa. Let your budget determine your investment and go from there.

3. How will you and your VA best work together?

Recognize that hiring a virtual assistant is not just dumping all the tasks you do not want to do or are not able to do into the lap of your VA. Have you ever heard the term “teamwork makes the dream work”? This is so true. Remember a VA is a business owner just like you. Your VA is operating a business while helping you grow and manage your business. Keep communication channels open. You will both have to set standards and expectations to help this team flow smoothly. Be mindful of deadlines set by your VA and vice versa. This relationship will thrive on mutual respect and great communication.  

4. How do you want the work completed?

Create systems and workflows so you can show your VA exactly how you run your business. It can be stressful when you hire a VA and want work done a specific way, but the VA is handling the task a different way. The task will still get done, but if it’s not through the process you desire then this could cause stress in your relationship. By providing clear instructions on the flow of projects, you will greatly eliminate the stress that can form from miscommunication. Having systems, workflows, and processes in place will help you both work best together.

5. What will you do if the first VA you hire is not a good fit?

As I said earlier, in this industry and others, you have to take the bad with the good. The first time you invest in a VA may not work. However, don’t let a bad experience turn you against VA’s. There are thousands and thousands of qualified professional VA’s that can deliver superb service. The key here is to recognize early when a VA is not a good fit, and terminate your contract before you invest too much money in a situation that is just not working. All VA’s should make you aware of the termination policy within their contract. If not, be sure to know policies before any work begins or money is exchanged.

Interested in learning more about Virtual Assistants, be sure to check out the previous posts in this series.

Until Next Time,

LaWann

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