As the COVID-19 pandemic strains businesses, it’s understandable why they turn to crisis management measures. However, this may mean that most companies will resort to retrenchment efforts and implement a skeletal workforce.
This may increase workload, which, in turn, could require alternative services, such as outsourcing. These outsourcing efforts include hiring a virtual assistant and other similar or related jobs to unload some workload burdens.
Even with the popularity of virtual assistants and other similar jobs offsite, administrative heads are still wary of hiring them.
To clear the air and to know more about outsourcing a virtual assistant, read through the whole article and figure out whether you need one or not.
What is a Virtual Assistant?
It is an intelligent and highly reliable human or AI-based system for help with multiple office tasks that is termed a virtual assistant, or VA.
Assisting you with some of your day-to-day tasks and responsibilities will free you to focus on more critical elements of your job. It can be a person or a tool. Hiring or outsourcing virtual assistants is an efficient way to keep track of office tasks without getting overwhelmed by them.
They can also act as your very own appointment manager or your personalized customer service center if your business involves dealing with many clients and you have to monitor and schedule appointment dates.
What are the Advantages of Outsourcing a Virtual Assitant?
With the risks and threats brought about by COVID-19, business owners must remain vigilant and continue pursuing corporate resilience plans.
Because business owners are hesitant to hire additional staff due to health risks and costs, they may overburden themselves and their current team if they do not employ extra hands. It is for this reason why hiring a virtual assistant proves to be advantageous these days.
If you are still on the fence about whether to pursue outsourcing plans involving VAs and other related customer service center jobs, let these reasons convince you instead:
Reduction of Costs
As uncertainty continues to loom in this pandemic, companies need to discontinue hiring employees the traditional way. Virtual assistants and other related jobs to do the trivial and tedious office work are considered a cost-saving measure these days.
An Outsourcing virtual assistant assumes and all the tools necessary to complete the job. Cut business costs and use that money to invest in other ventures.
Allows Schedule Flexibility and Avoid Stress
With a virtual assistant at your beck and call, you get to free up your heavy workload from trivial office work and focus more on those tasks that require your immediate attention.
Moreover, most virtual assistants are skilled in multiple areas. From tiresome yet straightforward activities like emailing and managing calls to more critical ones such as conducting research and writing content, they can help.
You will have more time to work if you have just one talented person by your side.
Access To Talent
Another great reason to hire virtual assistants is the limitless possibility of hiring the most talented individuals.
When you are trying to drive traffic to your website, a virtual assistant can help boost SEO. It is necessary always to be cautious in accepting applicants, and this should be done so that the hired individual is capable of delivering the desired results.
However, creating content is not the only thing that virtual assistants can do. You can also assign them to handle customers and set them for technical support to manage customer interaction and satisfaction. In such a way, you also get to have your customer service center!
Availability Towards Customers
Because of the uncertainty and economic slowdown, it is understandable for all companies to encounter delays when providing customer service. Therefore, it will surely be an edge for any company to entertain customer queries and concerns during this pandemic.
You can maintain your customer availability even during this pandemic by outsourcing a couple of virtual assistants or VAs. The more time zones you have available to handle your customers and clients, the better.
Rather than hiring a full-time customer service team, you could hire a couple of personal assistants to assist clients. Plus, you will also get to widen your market reach!
Challenges That Comes With Hiring a Virtual Assistant
Despite the numerous advantages that corporate resilience plans offer, there will always be obstacles to overcome.
As long as a challenge is well anticipated, it can be overcome. If your company decides to outsource virtual assistants, you should be aware of the following challenges:
Positive Communication Channels
In maintaining online interactions, you may have to overcome issues and fix them.
Therefore, to facilitate smooth and positive communication between you and your virtual assistant, you should invest in a reliable communication platform allowing both ends to interact seamlessly freely. So that you and your virtual assistant can communicate smoothly, you need to invest in a trustworthy communications platform that allows both ends to interact seamlessly, like a customer service center.
It is recommended to convey specific instructions to your assistant so that there are fewer instances of miscommunication.
Your VA should follow the direction you have provided. Due to the nature of the remote job, it is not easy to be sure of your outsourced employee’s productivity.
As such, there are several tools you can use to help you keep track of the productivity of your hired VA. Some tools allow you to take a screenshot of your VA’s device while they are working.
A virtual assistant must also be aware of their time since they tend to work intensely, and their hours often overlap. Ensure your VA has a healthy work environment not to feel overworked in a poorly managed contact center.
You might find it challenging to hire a virtual assistant from another country if this is your only option. As you need to adjust your body clock to work the same hours as your VA, keeping up with assigned tasks can be challenging.
Describe clearly how your schedule works for you in advance to avoid long-term conflict. If your work isn’t urgent, give your VA a deadline to meet with you.
As a result, you will appear as a responsive and flexible employer, rather than one who exhausts their personnel, as is typical of call center agents in a customer service center.
Conclusion: To Hire or Not To Hire?
Outsourcing a virtual assistant has its highs and lows, but after careful deliberation, it seems the advantages outweigh the disadvantages. Yet, no matter how good hiring VAs may be, the decision ultimately ends up to you.
If you think outsourcing VAs work for you, you should try reaching out to Staffing and Leasing, a premier company that provides the best talents you need. Whether for simple tasks or for providing efficient VAs for your customer service center, we got it for you! Request a quote today!