Entrepreneurs and SMEs often get bogged down by mundane tasks when building a successful business. Outsourcing to a virtual assistant is one of the most important hires you will make.
Is work building up and you just don’t seem to be able to keep on top of it? Do you find yourself struggling to focus on developing your business as you are being held back by an imploding to-do list?
If the answers are yes – maybe now is the time to consider outsourcing elements of your work. Research in 2017 revealed that UK SMEs are spending on average 120 hours a year on administrative tasks, time that could be spent better elsewhere. It further revealed that if productivity increased by the same amount, an extra £33.9 billion could be added to British GDP each year (Sage research). A rather startling statistic but it is common for entrepreneurs and business owners to want to do everything within their business themselves. Having built a business from scratch the art of delegation can be challenging and there is a perception that ‘doing it themselves’ saves time and money.
Outsourcing is still a relatively new proposition but one that is developing as an increasing number of SMEs recognise the benefits of using flexible support services in areas of their business. Technology improvements have facilitated this, giving VAs the ability to complete a huge range of tasks that don’t require them to be physically present in an office.
So what are the benefits of hiring a Virtual Assistant (VA)?
Access to a strong talent pool
SMEs and entrepreneurs have access to a highly skilled workforce. Many VAs have taken a life choice to work remotely or to re-address their work-life balance and have compromised over promotion and career progression. This offers small businesses access to a pool of talent that would otherwise be financially beyond the reach for a start up or small business.
Many small businesses won’t need the support of a permanent assistant. They may need a helping hand during busy times of the year or for specific projects, but then little or no support during slower months. A virtual assistant will bill only for the hours that they have worked – there are no real overheads to consider such as office space, health benefits and insurance, training, software, office equipment and more.
A VA can take over a myriad of crucial tasks – bookkeeping, email communication, calendar management, travel arrangements, invoicing, social media, customer relations aand much more. Time is created to develop business opportunities by offloading the more routine distraction tasks and the impact on your productivity and subsequently company revenue could be momentous.
Being a jack-of all-trades can seem a necessity for many entrepreneurs, but it really doesn’t have to be that way. SMEs and entrepreneurs rely on a small number of staff, if any at all. By using VAs to identify and fill skills gaps which may be lacking it improves efficiency without the costly expenses of hiring and training staff and software. It will free up time to focus on the core tasks that grow the business.
Create a professional brand
An effective VA helps promote your company brand by adding an additional level of professionalism. Do you answer your own telephone calls? Schedule your own appointments? You could be missing valuable opportunities! This could be attributed to a slower response time or it could be because potential clients and business partners may not be taking you seriously. Having an assistant to field your calls and manage your schedule shows potential clients that your time is valuable. They ensure you present a professional and polished company image when it matters.
Provision of outstanding performance
VAs recognise that business revenue depends on the performance of the tasks they are accountable for. They have a vested interest in providing outstanding services when their reputation and business success depends on how invaluable they are to an organisation or individual – they can often perform at a higher level than full-time employees. VAs are committed to providing services that result in increased production while delivering quality and value to their clients – quite literally their job depends on it.
Most office tasks can be outsourced and this list is by no means definitive but it demonstrates the range of taks that can be assigned to an experienced virtual assistant:
Top tasks to outsource
Office management (setting up of business procedures)
PowerPoint and keynote presentations
Google drive organisation
Minute taking and distribution
Writing and managing blogs and moderating comments
Project management and training tasks
Preparation and management of company manuals
Social media management tasks (Facebook, twitter, Instagram, Linkedin, Pinterest)
Travel and Expense management
Personal errands (Purchasing Gifts Online, etc.)
An experienced and intelligent VA can bring professionalism, productivity and organisational skills to your business? Buy-time assign each of their clients a dedicated assistant on an entirely flexible and pay as you go basis. They are happy to work by the hour, by the day or to create a plan to suit you – simply Buy Time as you need it. With no contract, subscription charges or minimum usage requirement, there are no real overheads to consider. Buy-time operates wherever you may need us; be it from your home or office, from our own desks or out and about getting things done.
If you would like to have an informal chat about how Buy-time can help please do get in touch. firstname.lastname@example.org or 0203 292 0566.