Virtual Assistant Archives - Virtual Latinos

Why Follow-Ups Are Important for Maintaining a Good Relationship Between Clients and VAs

Tips & How To's

Keep Your VA and Client Relationship Strong By Following Up

If you have a virtual assistant, you know the value of hiring a VA for your business. You might also have realized the importance of communication between you and your assistant.

Follow-ups are an important part of maintaining good communication with your virtual assistant and should be scheduled regularly, so they become a routine and comfortable part of your interaction. Follow-ups provide an opportunity for clients and VAs to share feedback, discuss goals and, and develop clear strategies for future success.

Schedule Follow-Ups with Your Virtual Assistant

A great way to avoid problems with your virtual assistant is to establish clear communication habits, and build trust is to make sure everyone is on the same page at all times. This can be achieved by scheduling regular follow-ups between you and your VA. It’s a good idea to schedule follow-ups frequently, especially:

  • After a work-related training or course
  • Upon completion of a large assignment or project
  • End of the quarter
  • End of the year

Reasons for Providing Follow-Ups

Providing regular follow-ups is a good idea when managing your remote employees. Having follow-up appointments with your virtual assistant builds trust, fosters client/VA understanding, and, most importantly, helps maintain and promote good performance. As an employer, you might think of yourself more as a coach and mentor to your employees than as someone who manages them. Making sure your virtual assistant feels heard and that they receive the proper support and guidance will motivate them to improve.

During follow-ups, you and your virtual assistant can discuss the elements of a project or task that you and your VA think went well, as well as the parts that went poorly. It’s also a great way for you and your VA to communicate your individual thoughts about what was learned and how best to move forward and tackle future projects most effectively.

Reinforce Employee Performance

Two major reasons for providing follow-ups are to maintain good performance and improve poor performance. This can be achieved through regular follow-ups in several ways:

Post-Project Follow-Ups

Providing feedback on a recently completed task or project reinforces good performance and lets your virtual assistant know what they did well and what you’d like to see more of. This is also an opportunity for your VA to provide you with feedback of their own about how they thought a project went, what challenged them, and how they think they performed.

Post-Training Follow-Ups

If you assign your virtual assistant a training or special course to complete, it’s a good idea to schedule a follow-up appointment afterward. This gives you a chance to hear what your VA learned and what they think of their newly acquired skills or knowledge. Together you can discuss how those new skills can be implemented in real-life and what support or resources your VA might need from you to do so.

Improving Performance

Follow-ups provide a great place to help improve performance and clarify goals and expectations. If you aren’t happy with the way a project was handled, initiating a follow-up soon after can help you reach an understanding with your virtual admin assistant and maintain a productive relationship. During the post-project follow-up, you can reiterate the specific project goals and how you think they were or were not met. Allowing your VA to share their thoughts here is also important. If you aren’t happy with how a project went, it’s a good idea to hear about it from your VA’s perspective. You can learn about areas they struggle with and help eliminate obstacles for improved performance in the future.

Building solid communication habits between you and your VA is even more critical than with your face-to-face employees. Working short follow-up sessions into your schedule is a great way to ensure expectations and needs are met and understood by both client and VA.

Why Choose Virtual Latinos

When you’re ready to find a virtual assistant for your business, Virtual Latinos is the place to look. Virtual Latinos offers the top virtual assistant services on the market. Our highly trained marketing specialists work remotely from a variety of Central and South American countries, including Peru, Colombia, Venezuela, Guatemala, and more. Our virtual assistants work in American timezones , and all of the top virtual assistants who work for Virtual Latinos are Spanish speaking virtual assistants, and are bilingual. When you’re ready to jump-start your productivity and success by hiring your own VA, contact Virtual Latinos and let us get started finding your perfect match.

How to Improve Your Online Presence by Hiring a Virtual Assistant

Hiring

We live in an extremely fast-paced society, where companies and businesses are expected to respond to current events and user-generated content within minutes. Online posts are often greatly delayed, giving the impression that those responsible for said content are entirely disconnected from their target base. However, monitoring various social media platforms and creating dynamic, engaging content is an extremely resource-intensive task, especially for small businesses with other priorities.

Hiring a virtual assistant from Virtual Latinos can be the perfect solution. They offer high-quality work and unique skills necessary to successfully maintain a vibrant online presence, which in turn frees up you and any other staff members to focus on the bigger picture. Working with our virtual assistants is also extremely affordable, allowing you to enjoy the benefits without overextending your budget.

Why Is a Strong Online Presence Important for Business Owners?

In an increasingly global society, establishing an online presence is an essential part of running a successful business. The high volume of online traffic means that promotional efforts online are often far more effective than in-person strategies. Online platforms also present you with a unique opportunity to build relationships with your clients. Over the past several years, brands that have made themselves more personable online have seen tremendous success in increasing their customer bases. By responding to trending topics and interacting with user-generated content, they appear more human and, as such, more trustworthy to potential consumers, improving people’s perception of your brand in a powerful way.

However, you must handle your online presence with care. Marketing mishaps online can often have long-lasting repercussions. If you’re going to make yourself available on the Internet, people will expect you to be fully available. Failing to be responsive, attentive, and consistent in creating additional content can easily lead to a lack of confidence from users, making them less likely to work with your brand in the future.

What Kinds of Tasks Can a Virtual Assistant Handle?

The primary purpose of adding a dedicated virtual assistant to your team is to improve your business by allocating your resources more efficiently. While the virtual assistant takes care of your online platforms, you can focus on expanding your business, developing new products, and building new partnerships. This arrangement works because virtual assistants are armed with the tools to accomplish what you need from them without constant monitoring or hand-holding. Top virtual assistant services encompass a wide variety of tasks to help make your life easier. These include:

  • Creating social media accounts and profiles
  • Researching the interests and preferences of your target audience
  • Generating regularly scheduled content
  • Addressing user-generated questions or comments
  • Revising existing content to ensure it remains relevant
  • Monitoring external content that references your brand
  • Tracking the results of your online efforts and help you adjust your social media strategy accordingly

Where to Find Affordable Virtual Assistants

Virtual assistants are an incredible resource, but not all virtual assistants are the same. At Virtual Latinos, we pride ourselves on providing our clients with the premier team of assistants available. Our staff has personally vetted every member of the team via a detailed system that looks at each individual’s education, work experience, and digital marketing skills. In addition to being highly qualified, the fact that our virtual assistants work remotely from Latin America offers unique benefits. All our assistants are fully bilingual, meaning that they can handle all the usual demands of your business while giving you increased access to any feedback from your Spanish-speaking customers.

Hailing from Mexico, Honduras, Colombia, and several other Latin American countries, our assistants can earn a comfortable income in their local currency while remaining extremely affordable to US employers. They are 40% to 75% less expensive to hire than virtual assistants in the US. Depending on your needs, you can hire a virtual assistant for as little as $5 per hour. This arrangement is so beneficial to both parties that becoming a virtual assistant with Virtual Latinos is a highly sought-after position. Furthermore, despite the distance, virtual assistants from Virtual Latinos work in the same time-zones as US employers, so they will always be available when you need them most.

If you’re prepared to make a splash on the digital stage and revitalize your online presence, look no further than hiring a virtual assistant from Virtual Latinos. Our assistants will work diligently alongside you to help develop a winning social media strategy to promote your brand successfully. Invest in yourself by investing in a virtual assistant and contact Virtual Latinos today to get started.

Country Highlight: Colombia

Tips & How To's

Find Your Ideal Virtual Assistant in Beautiful Colombia

Located in the northwestern portion of South America, Colombia is one of the most beautiful and culturally vibrant countries in the world. It boasts nearly 1,800 miles of coastline to the north and west, divided into Pacific and Caribbean coasts by the country of Panama. As a result, the area provides world-class beaches, competition-level surfing, sailing, and scuba diving, and all the adventure, recreation, and sunbathing you’d expect from a tropical destination of its caliber.

Further inland, Colombia retains its tropical climate, which makes for some of the best coffee production in the world. This coffee culture and its focus on persistence and work ethic permeate the Colombian way of life, and together with African, Afro-Caribbean, Spanish, and Catholic influences, serve to make Colombia the diverse mix of traditions it is today. With this central focus on dedication and work ethic, young Colombians of all backgrounds appreciate the ever-increasing growth of the local economy—the third-largest in Latin America.

Why Do Highly Motivated Colombians Seek Remote Employment?

While Colombia’s economy continues to grow, many Colombians continue to seek remote employment. Remote work offers several benefits for potential employees here, including:

Payment Based on US Standards

Despite the recent growth in the Colombian economy, its citizens experience several wage and currency-based advantages by working remotely in the US. Currently, the United States offers minimum wage and average task-based wages that are nearly five times what is offered in Colombia. This aspect makes becoming a VA a smart business decision for Colombians like Luis Lunar, whose favorite experience thus far has been “working hard all week to then find out that my boss wants to reward me with a big bonus on my next paycheck.”

Increased Access to Work

Whether they’re residing in a remote area of Colombia without ready access to a city and its associated job markets, or are located within one of Colombia’s most congested cities, traveling to and from work poses an issue for many Colombians. Not so with remote work – “I have the flexibility of working at home while I’m giving all my skills and effort on making a big company better,” says Lunar.

Improved Professional Development and Work-Life Balance

Remote employment can provide Colombians with professional development opportunities that may not be readily available in Colombia itself, including English-speaking international business contacts and networking benefits. “I have the best team, the best client and I feel so productive all the time! I get to work with a girl from the Dominican Republic and it is so nice to meet people from other countries while doing something that you love and helping a business grow,” says Cristina Cancino, a Colombian VA. Best of all, these benefits are available while at home, allowing a better work-life balance – “I love working from home because it is very useful during these times of COVID,” says Cancino.

How Can You Benefit From Hiring a Colombian Virtual Assistant?

Deciding to hire a virtual assistant from Colombia can benefit you and your business in two significant ways.

A Colombian Virtual Assistant Can Perform a Variety of Tasks

Hiring a virtual assistant takes the burden of the daily tasks necessary for success away from your schedule so you can focus on growth opportunities. Virtual assistants can perform tasks like:

  • Clerical work. If you or your business depends on the completion of paperwork, processing of digital files, assembling of client records, or other clerical tasks, a virtual assistant can ease the burden of these workplaces on your daily schedule.
  • Communications. Virtual assistants in Colombia are fully bilingual in both English and Spanish and can handle incoming phone calls, customer service inquiries, and email communications.
  • Marketing. Whether you need help with social media marketing, email marketing, blogging, or something else, a marketing virtual assistant from Colombia can provide you with what you need for success.

A Colombian Virtual Assistant Provides the Right Mix of Work Ethic and Approachability

Hiring a virtual assistant from Colombia allows you to access the deeply ingrained work ethic that comes naturally to Colombians as a result of the aforementioned cultural influences and values. These values translate to several positive qualities that make Colombian virtual assistants a particularly good fit for US-based clients, including:

  • Productivity. Our clients say Colombian VAs are hardworking and extremely able to train other VAs to perform their tasks as well. “This is where you see [the VAs] have an excellent working knowledge of their job assignments,” says client Jeff Craig of DC Law.
  • Dedication. Colombian VAs have proven extremely dedicated to both completion of the task at hand and learning more about the job in general.
  • Communication. As fully bilingual English and Spanish speakers, Colombian VAs have responded exceptionally well to clients who prioritize open communication and camaraderie.
  • Warmth. Colombians VAs are among the most personable remote workers in the world, a quality that transmits well to your clients. “Having someone showing empathy and understanding to your clients is always a plus,” says Jeff.

Choose Virtual Latinos for Your Colombian VA

Choosing Virtual Latinos as your virtual assistant agency means you’ll have access to the best bilingual virtual assistants in Colombia, Peru, Mexico, Puerto Rico, Venezuela, and other Latin American countries. These locales are within the same time zones as the US and allow streamlined communications as well as close cultural ties between the two areas. Together, you and your VA can help you achieve the success you’ve been striving for. Contact us today for more information.

Four Ways VAs Can Help Your Law Firm

Tips & How To's

If you operate a successful law firm, you’re fully aware that the day-to-day operations of a law firm require much more than court appearances and important meetings. As a lawyer, you face an enormous amount of clerical work and other time-consuming tasks that can take you away from crucial meetings and bog down your schedule if you can’t delegate correctly. Fortunately, hiring a virtual assistant (VA) for your law firm can relieve much of the burden by outsourcing many essential law firm tasks.

A VA can provide much more than the surface value of completing the tasks assigned. A VA’s influence can improve multiple internal aspects of your firm, which can help you improve your efficiency and grow your company. We’ve compiled the most important unseen benefits a VA can have for a law firm here.

Benefit #1: Time and Money Savings

One of the primary reasons lawyers give for hiring VAs is the time saved by delegating non-core tasks to a virtual legal assistant. Client Jeff Craig (DC Law) says, “Regarding the reason why I hired the VAs in the first place, which was for intake calls and retaining clients, I have seen how my numbers have increased with the help of the VAs I hired through Virtual Latinos.”

Besides, compared to the cost of hiring a legal assistant locally, the relative price of an affordable virtual assistant is remarkably lower. For smaller firms and solo lawyers, the ability to pay a VA for a variety of smaller tasks is much more cost-effective than hiring in-office personnel to perform smaller jobs throughout the day. In addition, lower cost can be attributed to the reduction in overhead that results when you limit in-house personnel, including:

  • Reduced use of infrastructure
  • Reduced use of resources
  • No responsibility to offer employee benefits

Benefit #2: Enhanced Services for Your Firm

When you hire a virtual legal assistant, you’ll reap the benefits of an experienced VA, readily equipped with the software necessary to work with you. In most cases, there’s no need for extensive software training, setup, or other clerical duties upon hiring. Instead, a quality VA will invest in the resources necessary to perform the job efficiently.

Client Kalani Hawks (Hawks Villafranca Law) says, “My VA is phenomenal; she’s so self-motivated and able to provide the support I need, so I can focus on my business without being bugged out in administrative details that will prevent me from growing my business. She’s also part of [my business] as she’s constantly providing ideas and feedback for me to improve my growth as well.”

Benefit #3: Excellent Customer Service Quality

Virtual assistants can provide several top-quality customer service benefits to help keep your clients feeling satisfied with your law firm’s dedication to their cases. Your VA can remain diligent in completing many day-to-day client-facing tasks while you focus on the cases at hand or engage in firm growth. Customer service-based duties your VA can handle include:

  • Information gathering
  • Client form completion
  • Regular client follow-ups regarding their case
  • Client notification

Additionally, bilingual VAs can interact with Spanish-speaking clients, facilitating communications between client and attorney, and completing the translation of all case-related information. Client Beckie Moriello (Raleigh Immigration Law Firm) says, “Hiring a VA from Virtual Latinos has helped me achieve goals in the sense of getting staff that is more economical for me, capable, professional, and bilingual. I was able to find good bilingual people who follow directions and do as I ask them to do.”

Benefit #4: Improved Work/Life Balance

The final benefit of hiring a virtual assistant for your law firm is perhaps the most intrinsic to your firm’s success—reducing the impact the work of growing your firm can have on your personal and family life. Since many solo practitioners and small firm owners must dedicate a great deal of time to both clerical work and growth-based activities, hiring a VA can help you strike the ideal balance. Best of all, a VA can help you ensure all client work and work to grow your firm is on track while you attend to important personal business.

Choose Virtual Latinos to Meet Your VA Needs

When you’re searching for virtual assistant companies with dedicated virtual assistants, look no further than Virtual Latinos. Our focus on Latin American countries (Mexico, Guatemala, Honduras, Colombia, and Venezuela) means each virtual assistant is within two time zones of your law firm. This enhances their availability to handle all the duties that a legal assistant or customer service provider must provide. Additionally, each VA is fully bilingual in Spanish and English to ensure proper care of your Spanish-speaking clients. Reach out today to begin hiring your virtual assistant, and grow your law firm with the help of Virtual Latinos.

5 Ways Virtual Assistants Can Fast-Track Your Insurance Company’s Success

Tools & Resources

In today’s digital era, brick and mortar locations are quickly becoming increasingly irrelevant. After all, most clients simply check the status of their insurance policies or submit claims via mobile apps or online websites. That leaves you with staff taking up most of the real estate in your offices. But is this arrangement necessary? Or is it time for you to take your business to the next level?

If you’re looking for a solution that will cut expenses, reduce your workload, and help you become more digitally savvy, the answer is easy: Hire virtual assistants. After all, not every task in your company requires an insurance license, and once hired, managing your virtual assistant is a breeze. Said assistant can take care of all the busy-work in the office, freeing up your schedule to tackle more important tasks, and when you’re working with Virtual Latinos, they can do so at a fraction of the usual cost.

What Benefits do Virtual Assistants Provide to Insurance Companies?

1) First Point of Contact for Clients

Clients will have questions every time a policy update is mailed. They’ll have much more trust in your company if you’re able to respond to those questions promptly. But balancing other responsibilities means you won’t always be available to take that call. Hiring a virtual assistant allows you to keep the lines of communication wide open and helps your clients feel like you are genuinely invested in hearing what they have to say. Our Virtual Latinos are in places like Colombia and Honduras, which have the same time zones as the US, so they’ll have no trouble receiving calls during US business hours.

After speaking with a client, the assistant can determine if the situation has been satisfactorily resolved or if the caller needs to be redirected to the appropriate division of your company. The ability to screen these calls cuts down on the number of interactions you need to address, while still giving your clients the impression that your company is there for them when necessary.

2) Manage Your Schedule

In addition to being that first point of contact when clients call or other staff members reach out, your assistant can also take care of your scheduling. By reviewing your calendar and availability, an assistant can add meetings to your schedule as needed. Instead of wasting your time trying to figure out how to squeeze in three appointments in a busy week, you can simply check your schedule every day to confirm what’s scheduled and leave it at that.

If circumstances change and rescheduling is necessary, your assistant can take care of that too. By reaching out to the affected parties to confirm the meeting is being rescheduled, you show that you respect people’s time.

3) Research and Data Collection

While you concentrate on taking care of any urgent situation, your virtual assistant can spend time performing research and collecting data. For your operation to run successfully, it’s crucial to have access to updated marketing information. Working with a virtual assistant agency enables you to keep track of upcoming trends and industry changes and stay competitive in the field. With Virtual Latinos, most of our assistants have robust marketing backgrounds, making them uniquely qualified to handle this task.

Virtual Latinos’ virtual assistants are fully bilingual, college-educated, motivated individuals. Their skills in English are equal to their expertise in Spanish, and they can handle complex documents full of technical language with little issue.

4) Data Entry

In the insurance industry, there are large amounts of information you will collect from clients during their time with you. Most of this is submitted via filled out forms. And while a lot of the process is becoming more automated, there are still quite a few things that a machine can’t do. A dedicated virtual assistant can take the time to pore over paperwork and perform the necessary data entry services for quotes, claims, and other such processes.

5) Social Media Management

Social media is the ultimate tool when it comes to promoting your company and your brand. But using social media properly involves a lot of time and commitment. What users love about the platform is the interactivity, which entails ensuring they have a constant cache of fresh, relevant content prepared and can respond to comments to your posts regularly. Virtual assistants can take care of providing these updates and scheduling posts to prevent your page from becoming stale. They are also able to take the time to respond to comments, as well as take note of any trends across social media that might have an impact on your company.

Hiring the Right Virtual Assistant for You

With so many choices for virtual assistants online, it’s easy to get overwhelmed. We help simplify that choice by providing a unique service within the industry. Not only are the assistants on our team thoroughly vetted and hand-picked to ensure they are incredibly qualified for the task, but they’re also far more affordable than any alternative. Given the differences in costs of living between the US and, say, El Salvador, the same dollar amount that would be considered extremely desirable for a paycheck in Latin America is simultaneously extremely affordable in the US. With Virtual Latinos, you can hire virtual assistants for as little as $5 per hour, though we have multiple pricing options for whatever your needs may be.

In addition to being cost-effective, our assistants’ language skills will allow you to grow your business even further, providing better support for any Spanish-speaking clients and partners. Spanish is the second most spoken language in the country, and being unable to provide services in Spanish is a considerable setback.

When you’re ready to take the next step for your insurance company, all you need to do is reach out to us so we can get started on pairing you with the best virtual assistant for your needs. Contact us today!

Three Common Problems Between Clients and Virtual Assistants—and How to Solve Them

Tips & How To's

If you’re anticipating joining the growing remote work movement to help your business succeed post-pandemic, the benefits of virtual assistants are numerous. However, as with any business relationship, there are potential pitfalls as well—and it’s essential to be aware of each to avoid issues. To help provide better insight and a clearer path to avoiding problems after you hire virtual assistants, we’ve gone straight to the source.

Virtual Latinos asked our VAs, “What are some of the most common issues between a VA and a client? How can a client go about solving them?” Here are the top three:

Issue #1: Communication

Communication is a common issue for many business relationships of all types, including VA/client relationships. The nature of remote work—with its focus on technology versus in-person contact—can provide additional barriers to communication. “Building a strong communication path since the beginning is a challenge, especially while you work with someone remotely,” says Jennifer Salazar, a Virtual Latinos VA.

To establish excellent communication from day one, Salazar recommends the following:

  • Be clear and concise. You have goals and expectations, and your VA must understand them to meet or exceed them. Do your best to communicate goals clearly from the beginning—and in a way that makes your expectations the primary focus of your communications.
  • Establish a schedule. Salazar suggests asking your VA to briefly summarize his or her activities at the end of the day. Alternatively, you could even schedule daily check-ins and check-outs, so both sides are clear regarding work completed and work outstanding.
  • Perform periodic internal follow-ups. Set a schedule to perform a formal follow-up with your VA—ideally at the one-month, three-month, sixth-month, and one-year milestones. “This will help clients and VAs to see the improvements or challenges they are facing while working together and also find a way to solve them,” says Salazar.

Issue #2: Productivity

Potential productivity issues—the ability to perform consistent, high-quality outsourced work and do so efficiently—are key concerns among professionals new to hiring remote workers. Fortunately (and contrary to popular belief), productivity tends to be even higher for many remote workers than it would be if those same workers were confined within an office setting. Still, that doesn’t mean you should simply assign project after project and then disappear until its due date.

So, how can you ensure your VA is performing as expected and working efficiently when you can’t see them working? Salazar recommends these strategies:

  • Institute a training process. If you want your VA to perform well, you’ll need to train them to do so. Make sure you provide your VA with the necessary resources and information from the beginning and enable them to learn about how your company—and the tasks they’ll undertake—needs to operate.
  • Utilize management tools. A great resource to help your VA manage time, tasks and more is the use of task management and time management tools. “For task management, some good tools are Trello, Asana, Teamwork, and Infinity; for time tracking, try Clockify, Toggl, Hubstaff, and Time Doctor,” says Salazar.
  • Hold short meetings. Often, productivity and excellent communications go hand in hand. Hold brief daily check-ins or weekly meetings to discuss which projects are finished, which are underway, and which may take more time and resources to complete.

Issue #3: Time Difference

The final barrier between a strong, productive relationship between client and VA are the issues a significant time difference between a client and a VA can cause. “Working with a virtual assistant from the other side of the globe can be pretty challenging, and that challenge typically comes in adjusting one’s body clock to a different time zone,” says Salazar. She notes that when there is a large time zone gap, VAs often need to train their bodies to work overnight or late-night hours, which can lead to a loss in productivity no matter how excellent the VA’s work ethic.

The solution is simple, according to Salazar—“Hire a VA who is closer to your time zone. Both of your schedules can be more synchronized, and your communication level will be more optimal.” For those of us in the Western Hemisphere, that means hiring a virtual assistant in Mexico, Central American countries like Costa Rica and Guatemala, and South American countries like Colombia and Venezuela.

Choose Virtual Latinos to Meet Your VA Needs

Virtual Latinos is one of the top virtual assistant services, dedicated to providing Latin American assistants for your needs. Our focus on Latin America means each of our virtual assistants is fully bilingual in English and Spanish and is located within two time zones of your own to optimize communications and productivity. Contact us today to learn more about how to hire a virtual assistant—and avoid the above VA pitfalls with ease.

How A Virtual Assistant Can Help You Manage Your Ecommerce Store

Tips & How To's

4 Steps to Hiring a Virtual Assistant Can Help You Manage Your eCommerce Store

When you first started your ecommerce store, you were likely managing every aspect of the business, from fulfilling orders, responding to customer queries at all hours, scheduling and managing social media posts, and keeping track of stock. There are many things that make being a small business owner gratifying but being in charge of it all isn’t one of them.

Whether you operate a sole proprietorship or have 10 employees or more, a virtual personal assistant can help. VAs offer an extra set of “hands” without the extra legwork associated with having an employee.

How to Hire a VA for Your Business

No matter what your small business is or how busy you are, you need time to keep it moving forward and growing. If you are looking to hire some help, a VA could be a perfect and affordable solution. Here’s how you hire your own virtual assistant for your ecommerce store and earn back some of those precious hours in your day.

Step 1: Decide What You Want Your Virtual Personal Assistant To Do

First, make a list of what you want your virtual assistant to do. Will they take on general tasks such as order fulfillment, customer service, or social media management? Or do you require a virtual assistant for more specialized tasks such as marketing, video production, project management, or digital advertising? Specialized VAs require less training, but generalized VAs can help take on repetitive tasks and free up more time in your workday. To determine which type of VA is right for you, spend some time documenting all the tasks you want to outsource, and the types of outcomes that you want your VA to achieve (for example, if hiring a VA to increase sales, what sales targets do you want them to reach?)

Step 2: Create a Job Description

To hire a virtual assistant right for the job, you will need to create a job description based on the types of tasks you wish to delegate. A job description includes:

  • Information about your ecommerce store (i.e., your target customer, the industry you target, what you sell, etc).
  • Desired level of experience, education, and skills
  • An outline of duties and key responsibilities
  • Specialized apps, tools, or software that the VA will be required to use (i.e., CRM systems or proprietary applications, WordPress, etc).

Step 3: Hire Your Virtual Personal Assistant

Once you have a job description outlining roles, responsibilities, and key qualifications, it’s time to do the hiring! At Virtual Latinos, we have two main ways of connecting with the perfect assistant for your needs:

  • Go through our agency. Create an account, fill out a short questionnaire outlining your needs, and let our experienced team find you the perfect virtual assistant. We’ll review your requirements and find the right assistant for your needs. We take on the interview process and choose the top 2-3 candidates for the job, letting you have final approval. Once hired, you will manage your assistant, but we provide ongoing support.
  • Hire through our Virtual Latinos directory. Sign up for our directory and browse assistants through filters like experience, key credentials, and certifications. Get in touch with them via our simple email system, and interview them like you would any other employee. Once hired, you manage them as long as your Virtual Latinos membership is active.

Our assistants are located all over Latin America, from Argentina, Costa Rica, or Mexico.

Step 4: Manage Your Virtual Assistant

Once hired, your small business virtual assistant can help you maintain any aspect of your business that you require. To keep the relationship beneficial, we recommend managing your employee with:

  • Periodic performance reviews. Using the job description and outcomes you designed at the beginning of the process, determine if your virtual assistant is meeting the expectations you have.
  • Resist the urge to micromanage. Small business owners can fall into the habit of wanting to control everything but remember this is why you hired a virtual assistant! Relax and let your new small business virtual assistant take off some of the load.
  • Schedule regular check-ins. Use easy communication tools like Slack to check in with your virtual assistant and see how they’re doing and what they plan on tackling for the day.

Call Virtual Latinos to Learn More About How to Hire a VA

A virtual assistant can help you manage several different aspects of your ecommerce store. To learn more about our process and how our virtual assistant can help lighten your business load, contact us.

3 Tips For Productively Managing Your Remote Team!

Tips & How To's

Leverage These 3 Tips for Managing Your Remote Team

Remote work is more than just a fad. As the COVID pandemic continues to sweep the globe, many experts predict that remote and virtual work will only increase in popularity, even after workers are allowed to return to the office. Employers are increasingly discovering that remote teams are often more productive. However, effective management of these teams is essential. To make the most of your virtual assistant(s), we recommend applying the following tips to effectively manage your remote teams:

1. Schedule Regular Check-Ins

There are a few different ways to check in with your remote virtual assistant, even if they’re located in Peru. Several tools can help you communicate readily with your virtual assistant, such as Slack, email, and phone. However, face-to-face interactions can also be helpful. We like tools like Google Team Hangouts and Zoom. Virtual check-ins:

  • Lead to more effective troubleshooting. When you and a virtual assistant are tackling a business task, problem-solving is much more effective face to face compared to email.
  • Create better non-verbal understanding. While Slack can be an effective form of communication, it can also be impersonal. Video platforms like Zoom can help you connect better with your virtual assistant, even if they’re located in Honduras.

Regular communication over multiple channels is essential to make sure your team is meeting your expectations. Even the best virtual assistant will benefit from direction and dialogue. Making your expectations known and tracking progress is crucial to the success of your remote team.

2. Have Measurable Objectives and Outcomes

To help your team stay on track and manage your own expectations, work to create measurable outcomes and objectives for your virtual assistant. For example, if your virtual assistant primarily helps with marketing, identify time-phased targets that they should be meeting (for example, gaining X more social media followers). Set your dedicated virtual assistant up for success by clearly delineating the tasks they are responsible for, why they are important, and make sure they understand how you will measure success. Define the scope of each task, desired deliverables, and the timeline for completing each task. This will help you all keep on track, even if you are working hundreds of miles apart.

At the same time, it’s also crucial to avoid micromanaging. It’s not possible to manage every aspect of your remote team’s work, and less stress is likely one of the reasons you hired a dedicated virtual assistant in the first place! Don’t focus on things like hours worked or online time. Focusing on outcomes and deliverables can help you manage the success of your virtual assistant and identify new tasks as necessary.

Step 3: Assure The Right Fit

Not everyone can work remotely with success. As such, it is essential to ensure that you have the right person for the tasks you are looking to fulfill. The best virtual assistant:

  • Has the ability to prioritize
  • Can readily adapt to new tasks and environments
  • Is collaborative
  • Communicates well
  • Is independent and self-motivated
  • Has superb organization
  • Is reliable
  • Has a result-oriented mindset, and;
  • A strong work ethic.

To succeed in a virtual environment, it is also essential for a virtual assistant to be tech-savvy. Remote work technology is rapidly evolving, and your business may also rely on proprietary applications, customer relationship management software, and website software. It is essential to find a virtual assistant who, even if they don’t have relevant certifications, is open to learning about new ways of working. To discover these qualifications when hiring a virtual assistant, try holding interviews over multiple channels like email, Zoom, or Slack. Using a multitude of methods can help pinpoint a virtual assistant’s skills. Email, for example, can test their writing ability and responsiveness, while video chatting can determine a candidate’s level of non-verbal communication and cultural fit with your needs.

Find The Perfect Remote Worker With Virtual Latinos

Remote workers are productive and help you run your business more effectively. Whether you are looking for someone to take on general administrative tasks for a specialized assistant to help with marketing or sales or need help with payroll, we have an assistant who can help. Using our Virtual Latino directory, you can browse by certification, location, and more. Our virtual assistant agency can also help you find the perfect candidate for your needs. Our virtual assistants are located all over South and Central America, including countries like Peru, Mexico, Venezuela, El Salvador, and more. To learn more about the services we offer, please contact us or read about our process.

Benefits Start-ups and Entrepreneurs Can Enjoy With a VA

Hiring

Why Hire a VA – Benefits for Start-Ups and Entrepreneurs

Budding small business owners have a lot on their plate and often manage every aspect of their business. If there is one area in which entrepreneurs and solopreneurs struggle, it is with the delegation of tasks and hiring of staff. With business constantly in flux, it can be difficult to know when to hire someone to take on a new role. When your business is still growing, scalability is essential, which is why more new small businesses are turning to virtual assistants.

What Is a Virtual Assistant?

A virtual assistant, or VA, is an external “hire” that can take on as few or as many business tasks as you require. Some hire VAs as independent contractors or freelancers, but business owners are increasingly turning to virtual assistant agencies for their hiring needs. With an agency, you pay a membership fee and have access to a database of fully vetted, experienced talent. If you don’t want to go through the hiring process yourself, an agency can help you find the perfect fit for your business.

As remote work increases in the United States and around the world, so does the popularity of virtual assistance. Entrepreneurs, in particular, can stand to save time and money with a virtual assistant. Find the help they need with a virtual assistance agency.

Benefits of Hiring a Virtual Assistant

A recent study found that, compared to hiring a full time employee with benefits, a virtual assistant can save entrepreneurs almost 80% on operating costs each year. The reasoning behind this is simple:

  • VAs are responsible for all their own operating costs, such as their workspace, equipment, and internet subscription.
  • VAs are scalable. You can hire them temporarily when you need their services or adjust hours per week based on demand.
  • Save money on training, recruitment, and retention. Hire a virtual assistant based on the skillset that you require. Also, hiring near-shore represents lower costs than hiring US-based VA’s

What Can a Virtual Assistant Do For Your Small Business?

A virtual assistant can help you tackle any business task, based on the skillset that you require. Some small business owners hire a dedicated virtual assistant to manage one aspect of their business, such as social media management or project management. Others hire VAs to take over repetitive or general business tasks such as stock tracking, order fulfillment, or customer service. Hiring a virtual assistant is not only scalable but means you are able to fulfill any task that you require. When you hire a virtual assistant through an agency, you have a hassle-free recruitment process, the agency helps you find and interview top applicants for you to decide which is the best fit for your business.

Ways a Virtual Assistant Can Help You Free Up Time In Your Workday

An affordable virtual assistant can not only help save your business money, but it can also free up more hours in your workday, allowing you to focus on innovation. Use a virtual assistant:

  • To collect data. Your customer relationship management (CRM) software, social media channels, and email produces a lot of data that can lead to insight about your customers. Your VA can help identify trends through data collection that helps your business thrive.
  • To manage your inbox. Answering emails 24/7 can be exhausting, especially when your business is in its infancy. Put a VA to the task of answering email inquiries on your behalf, while sending high importance or sensitive inquiries for your personal review.
  • To manage your calendar. Networking is essential for any new business owner. A virtual assistant can help you identify and enroll in networking activities and manage your itinerary along the way, from airfare and hotel to recommended restaurants.
  • To take over your social media. A consistent social media presence is essential to your business success, and a virtual assistant can help craft posts and bulk schedule their publication. Be sure to find a virtual assistant with specific experience with social media, content creation, and other relevant skills.
  • Creating newsletters or other forms of content creation. A virtual personal assistant can help you craft content for your email subscribers or even send out handwritten holiday cards.

Find a VA to Help Your Business

The point of a virtual assistant is to free up time in your workday. Hiring help virtually can be completely scalable and affordable – a must for budding businesses. If you are looking to expand your business but don’t want to commit to a full time hire, a virtual assistant can be the perfect solution. Find your perfect virtual assistant by skill set, certification, or any other qualifications you require. Going through an agency helps ensure that you have fully vetted, qualified talent whenever you need it. Our virtual assistants are fully trained, vetted, and ready to help from locations like Ecuador, Guatemala and the rest for Latin America. To learn more about how Virtual Latinos can help your business grow, contact us.

A Guide on How to Hire and Manage Virtual Assistants

Hiring

Looking to hire a Virtual Assistant?

Hiring virtual assistants and managing them can be really difficult to handle if you don’t establish clear guides and steps to follow for making the process run at its best.

Sure, they are cost-effective which is very convenient for your business, but, what is it that makes it tricky to handle?

Well, let’s see a few reasons:

a) You’re hiring people with different works habits
b) You’re hiring people you’ll have to manage from a distance
c) You’re hiring people you haven’t met face to face

See what I mean? But don’t worry, luckily for you, in this guide, we’ll be sharing with you 5 main practices to hire and manage your newly hired virtual assistant or virtual assistants team.

1) Do I need a virtual assistant?

In order for you to answer that question, we give some ideas on what key points to consider:

* Why do you need a virtual assistant?
You have specific tasks that you know someone could help you with, or, you have specific tasks that you know you shouldn’t be doing yourself so you can have more time to focus on your core business functions.

*Do I have the budget?
By analyzing your finances you’ll help yourself to have a clear scenario on how your costs and expenses are and see if you can incorporate hiring a virtual assistant on your annual budget. It’s better to do it that way in order for you to understand your business costs in general rather than just defining a budget every time you hire a virtual assistant.

*Where do I hire my virtual assistant from? Analyze the pros and cons to make the right decision

Here we provide just a few points to consider:

Pros – less expensive, flexible hours, you can hire them for a short amount of time if it’s just for a specific project.
Cons – different timezones, different cultural approaches, no quality of work.

After considering all of these points, you may be starting to realize why a Latino Virtual Assistant is the best option for you and what advantages a Latino Virtual Assistant has compared to other VAs from abroad.

2) What type of virtual assistant do I need?

This will be defined according to the type of tasks you want them to do. Here at Virtual Latinos, we can provide you with virtual assistants who perform many types of services.

* If you need help on tasks related to answering emails, booking trips or meetings, answering phone calls, inventories, placing orders, etc, then you’ll mostly need a General Virtual Assistant (Administrative/Executive Virtual Assistant, Customer Support virtual assistant).

* If you need help on tasks related to Digital Marketing, Video edition, Graphic Design, Sales, Real Estate, Property Management, etc, then you’ll need an Expert Virtual Assistant (Accountants/Bookkeepers, Community Managers, Digital Marketers, Content Creators (Bloggers, Copywriters), Traffickers,etc.)

3) Time to hire!

When you reach this point, this is the main question you have to ask to yourself now: Do I want to hire on my own and do all the work required to hire someone? or do I want someone else to do all the hiring process for me?

Well, that depends on many factors, but luckily for you, here at Virtual Latinos we got you covered and we offer you the two options to hire:

a) You do all the hiring process on your own by selecting and hiring the VAs from our Directory, or,
b) You can hire through our Virtual Latinos Agency and let us do all the process for you, helping you save a LOT of time with the guarantee of knowing you’ll get the best applicants for your business needs and goals.

4) Start working with your virtual assistant.

The following are the most important suggestions that we, as experts, consider are very important when starting to work with your new virtual assistant:

* Define tasks and provide training.
Now you have a new member of your team. You have to make sure they know why you hired them and what they need to do. For that, proper onboarding and training is the key. There you’ll fully explain your new VA about your project requirements, expectations, deadlines, tools you use daily for communication, time tracking, and task management among others.

* Organize / Document your Processes
In order to make things efficient, you must get used to the idea of creating documentation for your corresponding tasks’ procedures. This is done by creating SOPs (Standard Operating Procedures). SOPs gather all the information about the steps on each operation on your company that your new virtual assistant can have as a reference and part of his/her training. SOPs will help you ensure that if you or anyone in your company isn’t able to work, the company can still run as instructions are already built there for people to take over and also avoid miscommunications and failure to comply with determined procedures.

* Set up daily check-ins and a constant schedule for meetings with your virtual assistant.
This is a great tip that will make you keep your VA really in constant communication with you and from there, build, and achieve confidence and a strong work environment.

If you let your new virtual assistants know, from the beginning, that they have to communicate, then you’ll have a huge percentage of achieving a successful work routine. Our suggestion for daily communication is using an Instant Messaging tool such as Telegram or Whatsapp. In that way, you can establish that your VA checks with you when they start and when they finish their working hours and also give a brief summary of their daily progress.

Now, regarding the scheduling of meetings, we highly suggest to do them every two weeks, where you can catch up, talk about goals, strategies and also provide feedback for both of you on how you can improve. By doing this periodically, you’ll get to know your virtual assistant a lot better, both of you will get more comfortable working with each other and understanding the way you work better.

5) Make them feel valued and supported.

Besides letting your new virtual assistant know about your business, it’s time to also build trust, camaraderie, try to include them in your company’s culture just like your regular employees.

Show them that you care about their professional growth too by giving them quality projects, providing all the resources for them to perform at their best. Make payments on time. Be a trustworthy leader. Do constant follow-ups on their work so that they feel you care about how they’re doing and if you are being communicative and clear enough with what you want them to do.
Once you have done all of this, be sure that your virtual assistant will be working happy and will be willing to keep working with you and create a longterm lasting work relationship that will definitely benefit you both.

Conclusion

I know what you might be thinking right now, it might seem like a challenge to hire a virtual assistant in the beginning, right? especially if you haven’t done it before, but don’t worry, by achieving all of what we have suggested here, be sure you are all set and ready to feel confident in doing a good job on hiring and managing a virtual assistant. Just remember, everything starts with you:

  • Asking yourself, why do you need a virtual assistant? What are the key points to consider before hiring one?
  • After defining your budget for affording a virtual assistant, now you must know what type of virtual assistant you need. Remember to consider the tasks you want them to do for you.
  • Ok, you know what type of virtual assistant you’ll need, it’s time to hire!
  • You have hired your new VA, good! Now, it’s time to start working with them. Which first steps will help you start in a successful way?
  • Finally, now it’s time to know the person behind the desk, understand their needs, make them part of your company’s culture, make them feel included.

I, as the Customer / VA Success Manager here at Virtual Latinos, really see closely how everything that we’ve shared here has actually built successful work bonds while working virtually. Part of my job is to make sure you and your new VA work on this, together, make this a really growing and satisfying experience for you both. So, find out why choosing us is the best decision you can make for hiring a virtual assistant today!

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