Does your business need a Virtual Assistant?

What’s a Virtual Assistant? Most people look blank when I tell them what I do. Well, it’s usually a person who used to work as a personal or executive assistant and is now a business owner who has the same job description but works from their own home office.

Today, it’s not necessary for a small business to maintain a traditional office setup, with a mixture of full or part-time staff dedicated to specific tasks or departments. It’s not only not necessary, but by sticking to this model you can position yourself at a competitive disadvantage. Watch helplessly as your competitors see the advantages of streamlining and outsourcing.

The Evidence is Out There

Flexjobs is basically just what it says, a website with job listings that are flexible. In a recent bulletin, they report a 52% increase in remote job listings in the last 2 years so, it’s no surprise that we see the meteoric rise of the virtual assistant. In reality, there is not much the virtual assistant cannot do compared to a “real-life” assistant, except perhaps, get your coffee.

When entrepreneurs make an accurate comparison of costs the disparity becomes quite clear. It makes no sense, from a logistical and economic point of view, to continue to maintain a costly “bricks and mortar” office.

The Real Cost of an Employee

Hidden costs associated with employing somebody on either a full or part-time basis include benefits, contribution to a pension scheme, payment for sick leave, holiday pay, travel allowance and Government deductions. These are some of the payments necessary for an employee and to satisfy legal requirements. Yet these costs only reflect a part of the problem.

When a business owner commits to employing someone, they must also commit to training and ongoing development. Training and development are expected by an employee nowadays or they will go elsewhere. Hiring a full-time employee is also a commitment made without being fully aware of the future. It can be difficult to scale up or down your requirements and it can take too long to replace somebody who leaves. A business struggling due to staff shortage or lack of training can place the organization at a competitive disadvantage. Agility and responsiveness are keywords for all companies these days – not easy goals to achieve if the organization can

not easily manage employee growth.

As a business grows its needs to change. Therefore, the ability to sustain this growth will be determined by how quickly it can change direction and how easily its employees can be retrained, or in some cases replaced.

As a small business owner, how are you dealing with a sporadic need for assistance? Leave aa comment below.