6 things you need to know about virtual assistants

Randall Averitte is CEO and president of Scottsdale-based Remote Raven, an affordable and flexible staffing company that connects business owners with highly qualified virtual assistants in a variety of fields.

Remote employment and hiring methods are just two of the many areas of life and business where COVID has had a profound impact. Hiring offshore contract virtual assistants and services is quickly becoming a “new normal” practice for businesses as a result of the necessity to reduce expenses during the disruptive periods of the pandemic economic constraint.  

Many businesses are opting to hire virtual assistants in an effort to boost productivity and cut costs as they have proven to be the ultimate in terms of saving time, space, and money. What’s more, according to Statista research, there will be 86.5 million freelancers in the US by 2027, equating to 50.9 percent of the entire US employment. Here are six facts about the virtual employees who are diversifying the labor pool:

1. Employing a virtual assistant can cut costs for businesses by 70-90 percent: Hiring a full-time on-site assistant is more expensive because they require a desk, a computer, payroll taxes, and other expenses. Businesses can save between 70 and 90 percent of their company’s annual costs by using a virtual assistant that does not require these hidden expenses, thus freeing up funds to invest in other aspects of the business.

2. The vast majority of virtual assistants have four-year degrees, and international VAs generally place a high value on continued education and training: Virtual assistants typically have a four-year degree at minimum and are enrolled in courses to further build upon their knowledge of Microsoft, QuickBooks, and social media marketing, among other skills.

3. Not only can virtual assistants aid in administrative roles, but they can also provide their support to over 20 other industries: A virtual assistant can successfully execute any task that can be done remotely. Services such as social media marketing, financial/CPA, writing, nursing, bookkeeping, and real estate are just a few examples of what the VA industry has to offer.

4. Virtual assistants can work 30 hours or more per week: VAs mirror their clients time zone regardless of where they reside. While full-time virtual assistant employment is ideal for significantly increasing tenure, both part-time and full-time hours are available options for businesses to consider.

5. Employing independent virtual assistants allows businesses to reduce their most expensive line item, wages: Not only do businesses save money on payroll, but workers benefit as well, contributing to a satisfied workforce. In the Philippines, for example, the average commute to work is 90 minutes one way, for a daily commute time of three hours. Skilled virtual assistants, understandably, prefer remote work.

6. Virtual assistants employed abroad by U.S. businesses are paid substantially more than they would be paid at home: While this is true, on the other hand, the business that employs the VA pays substantially less than they would have to in America for work of a comparable or greater grade. 

Virtual assistants are a practical solution with many advantages for businesses looking to improve and streamline their operations being that they are flexible, well-trained, and provide an economical labor alternative.

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Author: Randall Averitte is CEO and president of Scottsdale-based Remote Raven, an affordable and flexible staffing company that connects business owners with highly qualified virtual assistants in a variety of fields.