You’ve only gone and set up a small business.
So what’s the deal:
Are you working from home?
Have you maybe found a super small office for you and your tiny start-up team?
What about the workload?
Let’s face it: running a business is hard.
Like, really hard.
Not to mention you’re trying to make it in a big city like Dallas!
And we know that just like Texas, you’re ready to go big.
You’re not sure if it’s going to work out.
Heck, you’re not sure how long it’ll last, anyway.
And now your list of tasks looks simply impossible.
Lucky for you, virtual assistants know how to do the impossible.
Hold on - what’s a virtual assistant?
And can they actually help me with my small business?
The answer is ‘yes’.
Well, it’s what they did for my business, anyway.
3 years ago, I finally got my business up and running.
I’d done the numbers.
I’d produced the goods I was going to sell.
I’d even set up a Facebook page and a website.
Pretty soon, my small team of 3 saw some great results.
Yep, that hard work was finally starting to pay off.
But the thing is, when your revenue starts to rise, and your profits start to take off, so does the amount of things on your to-do list.
And that’s a problem.
So, what was our solution? Easy: hiring a virtual assistant.
We hired 2 to start with, nearly doubling our team!
3 years later, we’ve worked with 19 virtual assistants in total. They have helped fill out the team, and have become near-permanent members of our tight-knit business.
And I really believe they helped us achieve that 43% growth that we saw within the first year of hiring them.
From the tasks we couldn't do ourselves to helping us work through the tail end of our to-do lists, we couldn’t recommend them more.
They helped our business, so how can they help yours?
Virtual Assistant Expert
67% of business executives claim that they would outsource certain tasks to a virtual or personal assistant.
As a young businessman, you know the need to stay on top of current trends!
That’s why we’ve brought together our guide on finding virtual assistants in Dallas.
Today’s article will talk you through:
- What virtual assistants are
- What the benefits of hiring them are
- How to hire a virtual assistant
- Our top-rated agencies for hiring one in Dallas
You know what personal assistants are, right?
A PA helps out with your to-do list and other administrative tasks.
They can even do more specialised things, such as working with certain departments and using the skills you might not have garnered just yet.
Now, when you hire a PA, you are hiring an employee.
That means forking out for a long-term salary.
That means buying a new computer, and putting together a desk from IKEA.
And it means making a commitment to hire them, and take them on for the foreseeable future.
Enter the virtual assistant!
See, they do everything a personal assistant does.
But they’re much cheaper, because:
They already have a desk and a computer.
And they don’t require any training.
They’re just much better-suited to a changeable small business environment.
(Sounds good to me.)
Essentially, they are remote workers that you can easily select on a project-to-project basis.
Virtual Assistant Expert
Very few VAs actually work to a 9 to 5, meaning they can work around your schedule.
Now, your business can keep ticking over even when you aren’t in the office.
In fact, there are actually two types of virtual assistant:
- There's the general virtual assistant: they tend to stick to administrative tasks, and are usually given tasks rather than a result to aim for (results or outcomes include increasing social media followings, for example).
(Roles include repetitive tasks, such as managing emails, or booking flights and appointments.)
- There’s also the specialised virtual assistant: true to their label, they use their expertise to do the specialised tasks they have previously been trained in. They are outsourced results.
(Roles can include more particular skills such as video editing, or customer service.)
If you’re still stuck for inspiration, here’s a list of tasks that virtual assistants typically handle:
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Someone has to pay the bills.
And guess what? A virtual assistant can do just that.
Virtual assistants typically follow up on any outstanding invoices or unpaid bills.
So they won’t be just saving you money, they’ll be helping you receive it, and dish it out.
Fancy keeping an eye on the competition?
Or maybe you’re keen to stay up-to-date on the latest business products and hires to add to your team?
A virtual assistant is the solution to this!
Whether they’re vetting new employees, or doing the research you can’t squeeze into your schedule, this is a very popular use for a VA.
Data can get complicated really quickly.
Unfortunately, it's really important for any business.
And it’s not like you can just get a maths degree, or turn up one day knowing Excel inside out.
Lucky for you, there are VAs out there that already have both of these things down!
Managing your email
From spam to viruses veiled as seriously important emails, your inbox is no doubt a mess.
And god forbid you miss an email from that client.
To save you the stress, hire a virtual assistant who can innovate your inbox, and keep you up-to-date with only the messages that matter.
You’ve got a business.
And that business is likely growing.
Chances are you feel like you don’t have any time at all, let alone any time to organise that time!
This is why you need to hire a virtual assistant.
Not only can they help out with your growing to-do list, they can help schedule the rest of it.
No more struggling to meet clients or forgetting appointments.
From administrative tasks, to the specialist activities you simply don’t have the time to work out, virtual assistants can literally do anything you ask of them.
Okay not literally everything, but most things.
And when you use an agency, you can easily find a hire that can fit your needs.
No scouring the web for the solution.
No painful interviews, and no uncertainty about your teammate.
So, now you know all of the things that a virtual assistant can do for you.
But did you know there are way more benefits to hiring a VA than just sifting through your inbox, or helping sort out your social media?
Here’s a list of perks that we encountered:
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We had so many virtual assistants to choose from
Dallas is a big place.
But the best part about digital assistants is that you’re not limited to the talent pool on your doorstep. Thanks to the internet, you can source them from all over the world.
And thanks to agencies, finding a specialised VA was super easy.
All we had to do is scroll through the options, and click ‘hire’.
They don’t have to be in the same country, nor the same time-zone to do they tasks after all.
They worked remotely, too, so we always have a teammate on hand even when our actual employees were tucked up in bed.
(our top-rated VA, Natasha, actually worked in the Philippines!)
They were our alternative to an expensive new hire
We all know how much a new employee costs.
You end up forking out in both time and resources - sometimes evening training.
New hires don't come cheap.
But VAs do.
You can control how much you spend by hiring their services for only a few hours a week, negotiate payment directly with the VAs.
We personally found this was one of the best ways to save on costs, but also get great value for money.
We could spend our saved time on things that really mattered
It’s an easy decision to make:
Would you rather spend time on data entry, or doing what you do best?
And would you rather research the latest industry trends, or run your business?
We loved that our saved time could finally let us use our strengths to boost business.
In fact, it meant we could actually start sailing the boat, rather than just keep it afloat.
Fancy putting the wind back in your sails, too?
Burnout was no longer a norm for our team
You love your business.
So why are you waiting for the weekend?
When we were too stressed out, we never got any proper work done.
Your business doesn’t deserve that.
That’s why we always recommend VAs to any business owners.
Outsourcing all the boring bits means you get to keep your key players engaged.
We didn’t need to have an office
Times are a-changing. And so is the way we work.
You don’t need an office to run a business these days.
You don’t need to wear a suit and tie and have meetings in big, scary rooms.
All you need is a computer.
If you work from home, a virtual assistant is the closest you can get to inhouse support!
Virtual Assistant Expert
55% of business executives believe a virtual assistant would allow them to focus on other tasks.
What could a virtual assistant let you focus on?
You’ve heard the benefits.
You know what they can do to solve your business needs.
And you now know that you really need one to take your business to the next level.
(Regardless if they’re in Texas or not!)
The question now, though, is this: how do you actually hire a virtual assistant?
Well, there are actually a few pathways you can take, but I’d always recommend using an agency.
They’re easier, quicker, and much more practised in match-making.
Alternatively, if you want to go it alone...
You Can Post A Job Advert Online
This method lets the virtual assistants come to you.
People like the sound of this method as it usually just means penning a job advert and simply waiting for the responses.
You can then choose the best candidate, and say hello to your new hire, right?
In theory, yes, but...
As easy as that sounds, there are quite a few time-consuming stages to this process.
Writing a job advert? That takes time out of your day.
And how long is waiting for responses going to take?
What about choosing from the list of candidates?
Then you’ll have to whittle your candidates down.
That’ll involve interviews, trial tasks, and finally picking the person that you think is up to the job.
How many weeks are you going to have to wait until you finally have a virtual assistant?
(Well, I suppose you could hire a VA to do that…)
Use a Freelance Marketplace
Virtual assistants sometimes go by another name - freelance personal assistants.
And so it follows that another method of finding a freelance PA is through a freelance marketplace.
Not dissimilar to an agency, they bring together a variety of VAs and showcase their skills, experience, and prices.
But - there is a problem.
As anyone can sign up to them, there is no method of vetting for skills or experience.
However, it's not just the lack of assurance regarding the quality of the virtual assistants that we warn against.
It’s the sheer volume of scammers that can threaten your security and waste your money.
That’s why we always recommend using an agency to guarantee the quality you deserve.
Network Your Way To A Virtual Assistant
If you’d rather stick to a more up-to-date method, why not use social media to tweet, share, and like your way to a virtual assistant?
In fact, most VAs make a point of using social media to advertise their many useful talents.
Take Twitter; this is currently a hub of VAs who are ready to take on any challenge you hand them.
And sure, whilst access to them is easy in the increasingly-connected world we live in, this is a time-costly solution to your business problems.
You’ll have to actively put out multiple tweets, comments or posts - it’s like penning that job advert all over again.
You could shop around using the hashtag-search and similar functions.
But even then, you still have to wait for responses.
Then, you’ll be back to interviewing, and using trial tasks to work out what they can do for you.
And how long is that going to take?
If only there was an easy and quick solution to this?
If only you could have all the virtual assistants compiled together, and assess them based on skills and experience, guaranteeing a high-quality hire?
Oh wait. There is.
Save yourself the search, and find the perfect virtual assistant for you by using one of the many agencies available.
Read More: The Best European VA Companies
Using An Agency
We even compiled top-rated VA agencies in the Dallas area in the next chapter to help save you even more time!)
One of the main benefits of using an agency is this: virtual assistants tend to be short-term hires.
So, if they aren’t up to the standards you need or deserve for your business - or decide to quit when you need them the most - you will be provided with a replacement.
Also, you can guarantee their quality no problem.
Off the bat, agencies tend to have minimum requirements, ensuring highly experienced and effective VAs.
This tends to be done by the number of years of experience.
They’ll often verify their experience and check references, too.
Plus, you can actually trial your VA before you decide to hire them - most agencies offer these free trials, ensuring you get the value for your money that you deserve.
No more waiting around for responses, and no more praying that they can do the job.
An easy solution with effective results.
In case you haven’t noticed, we love using agencies for hiring our virtual assistants.
And why wouldn't we?
That’s how we found most of our new teammates over the years!
And where would we be without our Natasha?
But even then, some agencies provide better quality - and better pricing - than others.
So, to help you find your perfect fit, we’ve brought together and compared the top-rated U.S agencies to make the process that much easier:
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Clients loved the clarity provided when it came to finding and working with their virtual assistants.
Reviewers revelled in the efficiency of finding a VA using Prialto, and the lightning-fast response when support was needed.
Customers loved the thorough process for finding a VA, and the support in place to guide you through each step of the process.
For 10 hours a week it is $10 an hour.
(This reduces if you purchase more hours a week.)
Pricing starts at $1500 a month, and includes 50 hours of support.
The hourly rate ranges from $15-19.
Not only can they provide you with a customisable virtual assistant service, they also have in-person local assistants on hand.
This suits businesses that are looking for commitment in a contract with a virtual assistant
Belay focuses on finding professionals in specialised fields to help support your business.
Which one will suit you best?
Your business has a lot of decisions to make.
Whether these decisions are to be made on the daily, or they’re at milestones you’ve finally reached, sometimes trying something new and taking that risk can help you reap brand new rewards.
And hiring a virtual assistant is no different.
That’s why we always recommend using an agency; as you can venture into something new with something of a safety net behind you.
And if it doesn't work out for you?
The solution and support for that is just as easy to find with these same agencies.
Now we want to hear what you think:
Are you looking for a solution to your administrative needs?
Or are you in need of more specialised support?
Contributor & Virtual Assistant Expert
I’m the Virtual Assistant Expert here at QuoteGrab, covering everything you need to know about remote assistants from all over the world.
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