What are the essential qualities you should look for when hiring a Virtual Assistant?
Updated: Nov 5
Many small business owners, entrepreneurs and startups start by wearing all the business and management hats, juggling everything from governance, sales & marketing, customer service, finance, operations, IT and distribution as well as day-to-day admin. While doing everything is a great way to learn all aspects of running a business, it can easily become overwhelming. Hiring or contracting with a Virtual Assistant is an affordable answer to getting the practical help you need.
The goal, after all, is to bring in more clients and focus on expanding your business strategy - the things you do best.
There are many administrative, creative and technical tasks, that an experienced VA can handle more efficiently than you, which in turn makes an impact on productivity and the way you work.
Key to success, however, is ensuring the Virtual Assistant you hire not only has the skills you need to enhance your business, but also the attitude, personality and resilience to promote your professional endeavours.
What qualities should you look for in a Virtual Assistant, that will forge a working partnership and make a meaningful difference?
Founder of SavvyDesk, Paula Harris shares her tips on securing a superstar
1. IS 100% RELIABLE
Reliability is key - many Virtual Assistant's get a bad rap here, and for good reason. This isn't a side-hustle and paramount to a professional VA service is reliability. No excuses. That means delivering on time, communicating as agreed and being honest with you about capabilities.
2. IS ADAPTABLE
Every employer needs someone with this soft skill and a Virtual Assistant should be flexible and willing to adapt to the ebb & flow of your business. Being able to react and adapt to the changeable needs of an entrepreneur or the demands of a startup or small business should come as second nature.
3. HAS THE ABILITY TO LEARN QUICKLY
Often a VA will have to pick up in-house process and demonstrate the ability to learn quickly. Time for onboarding is often limited, and you do not want to add to your workload, so you need someone who can fall in-step immediately. Continued learning enhances your professional collaboration promoting critical thinking and continuous improvement for both VA and client.
4. IS AN ORGANIZATIONAL WIZARD
Being organised and able to help you stay on top of your to-do list is one of the reasons Virtual Assistants are in high demand. Being able to multi-task is a given but being able to help busy people become more productive and get on with achieving what they do best - getting down to business.
5. ARE GREAT COMMUNICATORS
A VA should be a great communicator because often they are called upon to liaise with your team members or interact with your clients. In addition to building these relationships, they need to confidently represent themselves and your company values. A great communicator brings expertise, insight and understanding to the conversation demonstrating integrity and trustworthiness.
6. CAN DEMONSTRATE TECH SAVVINESS
Being tech-savvy doesn't necessarily mean knowing EVERYTHING about technology, tech-savviness is more about being confident about the basic technologies and tools we use in business and being able to recognise where it can bring efficiencies and make a big difference to you. It is about recommending and helping you implement new tools and technologies that are tried and tested and will add value.
7. HAS AN EXCEPTIONAL EYE FOR DETAIL
A great VA should be able to anticipate your needs and plan accordingly picking-up on details that might otherwise be left to the last minute or forgotten. Demonstrating awareness of the minutiae brings better outcomes for all and boosts overall productivity.
8. IS ACUTELY RESOURCEFUL
Identifying ways to create greater efficiencies or find practical solutions is a given but resourcefulness can be expressed through creativity, innovation, problem-solving and showing initiative. Dealing skilfully with any difficulties and finding a path toward resolution will save you much valued time - which is what you hired a VA for in the first place!
Of course, the list here isn't finite but rather focuses on key attributes a VA should bring to the table in order to help you during the hiring process. They are also qualities that we are recognised for at SavvyDesk and hope are the essence of our company ethos.
Get in touch and find out how a SavvyDesk VA can help transform your business today.
Embracing the responsibility for your own success is a hugely exciting moment in your business journey, but it is important to remember that you can't do everything. Most successful entrepreneurs will be the first to tell you they didn't do it alone - they had help!