Answers to commonly asked customer questions about how to work with a Virtual Assistant
What is a Virtual Assistant?
A Virtual Assistant (VA) is a professional business owner that provides administrative, marketing, project management and technical support for business owners, solopreneurs and other busy professionals.
Virtual Assistants work from their own offices, using the latest technology to work remotely to complete assigned tasks. They can help with any task or project that is usually handled by an on-site employee. A successful Virtual Assistant will have multiple clients and is constantly updating their knowledge and skills to deliver a first class service. Virtual Assistant’s are only paid for the hours required to perform each task, and unlike employees do not get paid for breaks, sickness or holidays.
Most importantly, a Virtual Assistant is there to help your business run more smoothly – you delegate tasks and they are completed for you in a timely manner to a highly professional standard. Depending upon your needs a Virtual Assistant can be employed on a day to day or ad hoc basis.
How does a Virtual Assistant work?
Virtual Assistants work remotely, for clients across the world. Through the wonders of technology, such as the internet and computers, a business owner can have the full support as if the Virtual Assistant is sitting in their office.
Does a Virtual Assistant work for other clients too?
At the Odd Ostrich we work with a small number of clients at any given time, which allows us to offer you flexibility, so you only pay for the time you use, there is no salary or contracted hours, just a dynamic resource that you can call upon when you need help.
Who can work with a Virtual Assistant?
Using a Virtual Assistant is a flexible solution, so it is suitable for all businesses at any stage of their journey and this includes start-ups who often do not have the funding or workload to be able to employ staff, or large businesses looking to outsource certain activities. A Virtual Assistant only works when there is something to do, so this can be a more cost-effective and efficient solution than having an actual employee.
Why would I work with a Virtual Assistant, when I can do everything myself?
Basically it saves you time. Working with a Virtual Assistant allows you to delegate those boring or repetitive tasks, giving you the time and freedom to concentrate on the more important tasks that you enjoy.
Are Virtual Assistants more expensive than hiring an employee?
The benefits of using a Virtual Assistant start to become clear when you compare it against the cost of recruiting an employee, even part time. There are massive cost savings to be made, because there is no salary to pay – just an hourly rate when your assistant works on a task for you and you don’t pay for time spent making tea or gossiping.
With a Virtual Assistant you don’t need to pay for any of the following:
- Recruitment cost
- Sick or Holiday Pay
- Tax or National Insurance
- Office Space
- Computers & software licenses
In brief, a Virtual Assistant does many things that a personal assistant or office administrator would do, however advancing technology means that they don’t need to be based in your office.
Tasks that can be outsourced to The Odd Ostrich include:
- Template design and set up
- MS Office support (Word, Excel, PowerPoint and Publisher)
- Database cleansing and CRM management
- Updating website content
- Management of social media – we can help you create strategies, write content and schedule posts for you
- Data entry
- Writing reports
- Project management
- Event planning
Our capabilities are not limited to these items, if you can provide training, we can help you with pretty much anything that can be done remotely.
How do I work with a Virtual Assistant?
Nowadays there are many online tools available to make working remotely easy for everyone. Most clients choose to use Dropbox, however we are happy to use any file sharing program you choose… it’s entirely up to you.
What hours do you work?
Can I meet my Virtual Assistant?
What experience do you have and what is your background?
The Odd Ostrich has more than 30 years’ experience of administration and marketing, in various roles within corporate organisations. Read more…….
I’ve never outsourced work before, will you be able to help me?
Yes of course. In fact very few clients who start working with us have detailed information about their business and the support they need. Furthermore part of the service we provide includes taking time to understand your needs and business.
My business is complicated, how will you understand it?
Do I have to commit to a Virtual Assistant for a long period of time?
At the Odd Ostrich we have a ‘Pay as You Go’ option which is a totally flexible arrangement with no ongoing commitments. You simply call us when you need help, which could be as little as one hour. If more regular support is required, we also offer a retainer package.
Will my information remain confidential?
I would like some support, what do I do next?
The best place to start is to chat with us about what you’re after and what your business strategy is. We can discuss the best way to get the maximum service for your business and what steps we need to take.