I found the buzz word: virtual assistant.
I was at a networking meeting, and one of the attendees nearly jumped out of his chair when I compared myself to a virtual assistant (with a specialty in writing). “That’s really big now,” he said.
It should be. In today’s economy, businesses should seek creative ways to be lean and efficient. Imagine an employee for whom you don’t have to pay taxes or provide benefits, and you don’t have to guarantee a certain amount of hours or worry about unemployment benefits. You don’t even have to provide an office space or equipment.
This employee can contract with you on a per project basis, or be available at set hours if you wish. You contact them by phone or email to communicate your needs. He or she can take customer service calls, set up travel arrangements, edit correspondence, update databases, assemble mailings, create brochures… almost anything someone affixed to a cubicle can do- except gossip at the water cooler.
Of course, you can’t replace your receptionist or sales clerk with a virtual assistant. Some businesses thrive by providing a unique experience to people as they walk through the door. With some creative outsourcing, however, you are bound to find some ways to save money without sacrificing quality of service.
Suppose you want to try this VA thing. Where do you find one?
Believe it or not, there are a lot of people who are unemployed or underemployed or who need a little extra income, but can’t commit to a full-time job. From experience, many are college-educated mothers who have graduated from full-time mom when their kids started school and are seeking an outlet for their time and talents.
With a little research, through your social and online networks, you may be able to find some of these people who are already established in business or who would be willing to work with you. A bonus to hiring a VA is that he or she doesn’t have to live close by. If someone has the proper credentials, they can live across the country (or even the world) and still write, type, or do data entry on behalf of your business.
Build your business and keep America working. Hire a VA today!
- What Can a Virtual Assistant do for Me? [Denise Cameron] (ecademy.com)
- How to Outsource Your Online Content Creation, But STILL Keep Control of It! (davidrisley.com)
- Want to Reduce Labor Costs? Get a Virtual Assistant (unstoppableassistants.wordpress.com)