As a student business owner, there are lots of distinctive challenges to be navigated. Apart from understanding and properly executing your business plan, you will have to constantly battle with seeing off academic and business related tasks clogging your to do list. At this point, hiring a virtual assistant (VA) can be a logical thing to do. How can you find the best options?
Find one you can trust
VAs are helpful in areas such as social media management, public relations and other duties that are vital to the success of a brand. Why should you make the mistake of entrusting your brand image to someone you cannot trust? Your VA should be someone you can get along with, one you can trust with business information. How do you gauge trustworthiness? The same you do it with any other product: reading reviews and testimonials. Always ask for samples of past work where possible.
Find a VA that has experience in your industry
You have spent time to create a business plan. It should guide you in hiring any staff and a VA shouldn’t be any different. They all have different skill sets and experiences so you should find one that has some level of experience in your niche. A VA that doesn’t understand the way your business works is recipe for disaster. Fractured relationships are the least of your worries here as you could end up spending man-hours training the VA instead of getting work done.
Find a VA that fits your payment choices
VAs usually charge by the hour. Do you have the time and capacity to monitor what has been done within the hour? Even when you know the average time it takes to complete a certain task, there is no guarantee that you will get value for money. This is why you should appoint VAs that can accept batch payment as well. The flexibility can help ensure efficient spending. On this point, it is important to note that cheap doesn’t always translate to “good”. Be ready to pay a little bit more for better value.
Find a VA in your time zone
When hiring a VA, the difference in location and time zones do not matter. However, efficiency increases a great deal if you and your VA are online at the same time to discuss tasks for the day. The VA working in your time zone also reduces the possibility of projects being done wrongly as the communication lines flow better when in the same time zone.
Appointing a VA is something you have to do at least once in your business life as a student. The key to a long lasting relationship between you and your VA is to focus on finding a trustworthy and experienced one that you can comfortably hand over business details to, without going beyond your budget.