A virtual assistant (VA) is an independent contractor that performs administrative services to clients while operating remotely. They are convenient, affordable, armed with several skill sets, and come in all shapes and sizes — full-time, part-time, employee, freelance, and temporary.
According to Catherine VanVonno, President and CEO of remote staffing firm and Outsource Accelerator Source Partner 20four7VA, hiring virtual assistants is more of a norm nowadays.
Compared to how the industry was years ago, everyone is more aware and has access to offshore staffing. Its promised cost-effectiveness and high-quality work also urge companies to hire VAs left and right.
However, since they work away from the office, managers must take extra steps to create a great working relationship with their VAs.
Fortunately, VanVonno gave us tips on how to connect with your remote staffers.
VanVonno believes that a healthy employer-VA relationship starts with a good onboarding process. Therefore, managers and employers must set aside time to welcome their VAs to the firm. Treat them to an orientation that befits a regular in-house employee.
Create a proper offloading process.
Ease your VAs in the company’s operation by properly offloading tasks to them. Explain what goes on in your everyday operations, what needs improvement on the work you assign, and let them know how you would like a project to be done.
Allow them to be a part of your company.
VAs are also part of your internal operations, no matter if they are freelancers or a part of an outsourcing firm. Therefore, you must include them in any on-site meetings and keep them updated on what goes on inside the organization.
Help them grow.
Give constructive feedback to their work. Tell them what they have done best and their mistakes so that they would know what to do next time.
Video conferencing platforms like Slack, Google Meet, and Skype have made it possible for companies to hire remote employees worldwide. And you need to utilize them when talking to your VAs.
Diversify your workforce.
With DEI (diversity, equity, and inclusion) initiatives becoming a big thing in the business world, Vanvonno said that it is crucial for companies to “look beyond [their] front door. Create an inclusive environment with your VAs no matter what country, race, or culture they are from.
VAs would indeed be needed by thousands of businesses looking to expand operations this year. And so, employers and managers should brush up their leadership skills to create an excellent relationship with any remote employee they would add to their company.