The introduction of the internet in the 1990s added up to the list of technological advancements, making it easier for the companies to administer and accomplish their goals. The internet’s debut came in with a realization for the companies that the physical presence of an employee in an office is not important for making them work, and this led to the brewing of the concept of working virtually.
The growth of startup companies, small businesses, and those operating their business online look for strategies and recruitment options which gives them the advantage to climb up the ladder of success. The prime reason for these companies to look for such opportunities is to get the best ROI. One such job is a virtual assistant and India is one of the leading countries with stellar English speaking virtual assistants catering to global clients.
The entrepreneurs and the businesses operating online have been the biggest source of demand for virtual assistants since they want to cut the extra cost by taking up an office space for employees to work. Apart from them, SME’s also hire virtual assistants to carry on their specific tasks such as administration and social media marketing. Thus, it can be seen that their duties are not just limited to the clerical work of the company. Apart from that, they can assist in the area of marketing, web-design and book-keeping and several other services. The role of a virtual assistant is very diverse. Whereas there can be some virtual assistants who are specialized in a particular field so they might not be able to perform the tasks other than their area of specialization.
A virtual assistant can be defined as someone who remotely assists a business by managing its support services. Virtual assistant’s most common area is to work in the administrative tasks but they can also engage themselves in other areas of business where their help is required. Most of them work on a contractual or freelance basis but some of them might even work as a regular employee of the company working remotely.
Further listed are some points which can help you guide through the process of selecting a virtual assistant in India:
1. WHY A VIRTUAL ASSISTANT?
Before starting the hunt for the virtual assistant, the company/individuals need to get the answer to some questions which will further help them in the hiring process. Some of these questions are-
– What are the specific tasks you want the virtual assistant to take care of?
– Does the task require someone permanently or temporarily?
– Will the VA be given flexible or regular hours to work?
– What budget have you decided for the particular hiring?
– What skillset are you looking for in the person?
2. INDIVIDUAL RECOMMENDATIONS
Are you worried about finding the right individual for the position of a virtual assistant? Just like the company reaches out to people for recommendations in case they are looking to hire a new employee for office, they look out for recommendations when hiring for someone virtually. Going forward with the given suggestions assists in getting a hand on good and trustworthy candidates. In case you don’t have anyone to get recommendations from, you can peek into the reviews and testimonials available on the internet.
3. REVIEWING OF RESUME AND ASKING FOR SAMPLE TASKS
As required for any other job, make sure you ask the candidate for his/her resume along with a sample article to get a glance at their language skills. Asking them to carry out sample tasks will be helpful to judge their ability. For example, testing their writing ability would be especially useful in the case where the virtual assistant is required to send out emails and writing blogs for the company. While going through the candidate’s resume make sure to look for the skill set required for accomplishing the job. By doing this you can cut down the potential learning curves if any.
4. GO SLOW
The urgency of the tasks might lead you to assign a mountain of tasks to the virtual assistant in the initial days of him/her joining the company. The outsourcing company needs to understand that dumping in a lot of things at first might put some pressure on the VA which will leave him/her demotivated by the end of the task. During the starting days, the virtual assistant should be given some time for familiarizing himself/herself with the business.
5. CRYSTAL CLEAR COMMUNICATION
Communication becomes a higher priority when an individual works remotely. Good communication helps in giving out clear instructions for the task to the virtual assistant thus avoiding the misunderstanding. If there is no proper communication between you and the virtual assistant, he/she will fall apart in a short time.
6. ACCESS TO RIGHT TOOLS
Giving virtual assistants access to the set of right tools will help in enhancing the productivity of the business. Without the use of tools, a particular activity might prove to be time-consuming and more complicated.