There is a growing tendency among Australian companies to outsource much of their work, be it online design, content and article writing or general office and sales work. When this is the case, and the majority, or at least part of your team is virtual, you need to be sure you have hired virtual assistant online who you can trust and who are up to the task.
It is simply a waste of everybody’s time if you invest resources and training into someone, only to find that some months, or even weeks down the track, they are not delivering. Better to hire very slowly and make completely sure that you are happy with them and the way they work, and that they are happy and capable of working with you.
This applies equally to the team in your office, but it is that much harder to keep track of your best virtual assistant who is working for you thousands and thousands of kilometers away. How can you be sure that they are putting one hundred percent of their time into your work when they say they are? Are they spending fifty percent of every day playing computer games when they say they are hard at work on your business? If you look for certain key characteristics in your virtual team as you are in the process of hiring them, you can rest easy that they will be doing what they say they’re doing.
Some things cannot be taught. A person is honest or he’s not. Look for an honest employee and check the hours he has logged, to make sure that he is being above board about this. Some outsourcing sites like Elance and oDesk allow you to track work done by taking screen shots, but if you do this, you run the risk of your virtual assistant feeling as if you have no trust in him from the outset.
You want to find someone who is responsive. That is, he needs to answer your emails promptly and fully. Attention to detail is another important characteristic. If someone lets small slips happen in their work for you, you will have to pay someone else to spend time correcting these errors. Consistency and reliability are also very important. Can you be sure that they will do what you ask every time, and can you trust that they will do it to a high standard every time?
A love of computers and the internet are necessary. Hopefully your relationship with them is going to extend over a very long period of time, so you need to be sure that the type of work you are asking of your virtual assistant online is to their liking.
Especially if you are employing your virtual team in the Philippines or India or indeed any developing country, you need to be sure that their language skills are up to it. It is no good if the technical knowledge they display is marred by poor grammar or bad spelling. Test out their fluency and knowledge of English before you offer the position to them. You will find that there are many computer savvy workers who have excellent English skills, so it won’t be difficult to find just the sort of person you want.
You want a self starter for your team. Someone who needs to be guided every inch of the way is going to be more of a liability than a help. Yes, they need to be able to follow instructions, but they also need to be able to think outside of the box.
Once you have found someone exhibiting all of these traits, you know you have found the virtual assistant online who will be an asset to your business.
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