My Virtual Assistant service increases your profit!

“My Virtual Assistant service increases your profit!”

Here is what I mean by my statement “My Virtual Assistant service increases your profit!” - my hourly rate is probably a lot lower than yours so by delegating the parts of your business that you either don’t like, or you are not particularly good at, you free up more time to do what you do well – sell whatever it may be that you’re selling.

I think sometimes in life we need a bit of assistance deciding if we need help.  You might not even realise that you need help with admin or bookkeeping – but also, it might just be that my Virtual Assistant service will help you make more money - if that’s what you want of course?

I have created a spreadsheet that should help you come to a decision.  Please feel free to have a play with it and put your own figures in and see what it tells you.  There are 2 sheets partly completed, one is if you charge your time at £40 per hour and one is if you charge your time at £50 per hour – you can edit these as appropriate to you.

If you have any questions please get in touch and if you HATE spreadsheets feel free to send your information over to me and I will complete the spreadsheet for you and send it back, free of charge.

 

 

Have you created a word cloud?

Word Cloud

My Word Cloud

I have just used a website called wordle.net to create the above word cloud.  One of my clients did it today and I loved it so much I created my own. You simply go on to the Wordle website, type in lots of words to do with your business, yourself and what you think your clients might be looking for and then you play around with the format – it’s really simple.  Each time you look at it different words jump out at you and if you imagine looking at it from your clients point of view the words that are important to them will jump out to them too!

Virtual Assistant Services

Virtual Assistant – who should hire one?

I was very excited to be asked to write an piece on the above subject for Estate & Manor Magazine – an online magazine portal which is dedicated to global VIP staffing. 

I have copied and pasted the article below but if you would like to read it on the Estate & Manor Magazine website this is the link: https://www.estateandmanor.com/hiring-a-virtual-assistant/

 

“I started my Virtual Assistant (or VA) business in September 2015 and I find I get asked the same questions time and time again by perspective clients as well as my friends and family.  I have written the following article to try and answer some of these questions

Who can use a Virtual Assistant?

The short answer to this is – anybody and everybody.  The Virtual Assistant service came in to play for the people that can’t justify having a full time employed Personal / Executive Assistant but are desperate for help in their busy office or home lives

What does a Virtual Assistant do?

There are many services that a Virtual Assistant can provide and different VA’s specialise in different areas – for example, a VA could specialise in Social Media, Marketing, Bookkeeping or Event Planning. On top of this most Virtual Assistants will be able to help you with anything an administrator or secretary would usually do and the majority of VA’s will be able to help you with getting organised, booking travel, research and  e-mail & diary management. If you think of what you would expect a Personal Assistant to do a Virtual Assistant can do exactly the same and will usually have a long and successful Personal Assistant background

Why hire a Virtual Assistant instead of a Personal Assistant?

You should hire a VA instead of a PA if you need help but you can’t fill 40 hours a week of someone’s time – who wants to pay someone a very good salary for sitting twiddling their thumbs or doing work below their paygrade? The flexibility of a Virtual Assistant appeals to a lot of people too – you can use your VA as little or as often as you like. There is no holiday or sickness pay that you will need to pay out for your Virtual Assistant, and also, you won’t need to provide any equipment or office space for them as they will already have their own

How can I justify the cost of a Virtual Assistant?

Many people feel that hiring a VA is a luxury, they think “I can do everything myself so why pay somebody else to do it for me?”  I really believe this is not the case.  Everybody has their strengths and they should work to them.  There is a really simple formula you can use which shows how much sense it actually makes to use a Virtual Assistant.  The following figures are only examples and you would need to use actual figures to make it work for you but it gives you a general idea

  • MD charges their time out at £100 an hour, it takes them 2 hours a week to generate sales invoices and send them out
  • VA charges their time out at £25 an hour, it would only take them 1 hour a week to generate the same amount of sales invoices and send them out
  • Using these figures it costs the MD £10,400 (£200 per week x 52 weeks) per year to invoice clients when they would only need to pay a Virtual Assistant £1,300 (£25 per week x 52 weeks) per year

By playing to peoples’ strengths things get done much more efficiently and cost effectively. MD can now use those 2 hours a week as billable time and actually make more profit – who doesn’t want to be more profitable? So the question is – how can I NOT justify the cost of a Virtual Assistant?

How do I decide what to delegate to a Virtual Assistant?

The first thing you need to do is pull a list together of everything you do on a daily basis and create a table with this information.  This needs to be a detailed list so don’t just put “Accounts” break it down in to the different portions of your accounts eg. Sales Invoicing, Bank Reconciliation, Pay Suppliers, Credit Control etc and next to each of these sections guestimate how long you spend on each one. When you have done this you can have a look down the list and be really honest with yourself about what you believe your VA could do more efficiently than you and what tasks you feel comfortable delegating

How do I know how many hours I need a Virtual Assistant for?

Using the table you have created from the above section and looking at what you have decided to delegate you can add up the time that it takes you to carry out these tasks and discuss with your VA how long they feel those task might take them and you then have a starting point of how many hours per week or month you will need your VA to work for you. Most Virtual Assistants do packages so that the more hours you use the cheaper the hourly rate

How do I find the right Virtual Assistant for me?

From the table you have created you will know if you need your VA to specialise in a certain area of expertise so you could search for that using your search engine, eg. “Virtual Assistant Bookkeeping”.  Some people like to use a VA that is close to home, this varies from person to person but I have found that all of my clients are in the same city as me and they have all wanted to meet me face to face too – what I do holds a position of trust so I totally understand this but remember not all VA’s will want to meet with you, if this is something that you require you can ask the question in your initial contact.  You may also find that people that you know already use a VA that they can refer you to so ask around, you never know.  You could put messages out on social media sites for help – eg. LinkedIn, Twitter, Facebook – most VA’s will have a social media presence.

If you do have any further questions regarding Virtual Assistants, Carla Fallows would love for you to get in touch via her website: www.invaluableva.com

Can you justify the cost of a Virtual Assistant?

I’d like to start by turning the above title on its’ head and asking instead – how can you NOT justify the cost of a Virtual Assistant?

The reason I say this is that everybody has their strengths and we should all work to them. Your VA should be able to do certain tasks a lot more efficiently than than you can do them yourself and in turn should end up increasing your profitability

There is a simple formula you can use to work this out – I am using example figures and tasks for this but you should insert you own to get a true calculation:

  • “X” charges their time out at £100 per hour, they do sales invoicing for 2 hours every week (“X” could have 104 extra billable hours totalling £10,400 annually if not processing invoicing)
  • “VA” costs “X” £25 per hour and can get the same amount of invoicing finished in 1 hour every week (Total annual cost to “X” £1,300)

I think the above figures speak for themselves really – your extra profit using the above values would be £9,100 and that’s just the tip of the iceberg – there is so much more that your Virtual Assistant can do for you so add up all of the hours you can pass over and get some calculations done

Virtual Assistant – to VA or not to VA – that was my question…

How I became a Virtual Assistant

Having being wrapped in the safety of full time employment for the last 24 years I was extremely conflicted about this decision.  I’d always thought about working for myself – before I’d even heard of the term “Virtual Assistant” that is what I wanted to be, I just don’t think it had a name way back then!

So – why now?

Having given birth to our amazing twin boys Thomas & Benjamin, in September 2013, going to work just did not feel the same.  The hours I needed to do to earn the money that my family needed were absolutely killing me. I was working 28 hours over 3 days and having to be up at 5.30am on those days to get to work on time, then coming home and trying to be a good Mummy to my boys and a good wife to my hubby – but it just wasn’t happening, something had to give.

I decided – it’s now or never – I needed a better work life balance and also hopefully a higher income to give our family some more freedom. So that was it – I decided I was going to be the next Virtual Assistant in Chester – not that my location matters as being virtual I can do anything for anyone anywhere!

Invaluable is still in the early stages of setting up and I’m so thankful to the few who have already agreed to work with me (if you’re reading this you know who you are!) I’m hoping I can get more and more clients on board so that I can make my family proud of me because as we all know – family is everything.  I’m so excited about this new chapter in my life, it just feels right, I may fall flat on my face but at least I tried and I will never wonder, what if…

 

Thanks for reading

Carla xxx

Carla is one of the most personable people I have ever met

Carla started working for us when she moved to Ireland in March 2001.  She quickly picked up the various systems we had in place and then rapidly took on more responsibility within the company.  Carla quickly became indispensable to us and has been the mainstay of the company.  We cannot imagine how we will manage without her when she returns to the UK at the end of the month.

Since Carla started working for us I have been able to spend more time away from the office, feeling secure in the knowledge that I am leaving the business in more capable hands than my own.  She has the ability to work on her own initiative and needs no directing in any aspects of her work, having total confidence in decision making at all levels.  She has introduced numerous new procedures – completely transforming the efficiency of the company.  She is conscientious and totally committed.  She has supported me tirelessly and taken much stress off my shoulders.

As office manager Carla has a varied range of tasks to complete.  She is responsible for the day to day running of the office including arranging visits from and to clients, suppliers and other dignitaries.  Her organisational and communication skills enable her to keep track of forthcoming and past events with a large international network of clients and suppliers, ensuring that all AVL staff are present for meetings and trips organised by her to meet strict deadlines.  Carla is also responsible for the control of all AVL accounts, including sales and purchases together with a vital credit control role.  She is responsible for the preparation and maintenance of the company accounts and liaises with our accountant to ensure that all documentation is submitted to the Revenue on time.

Carla is one of the most personable people I have ever met, but she is also capable of being firm with people and always manages to get the desired results.  She is able to fit in to a team environment and interacts with colleagues at all levels.  Her communication skills are exemplary whether with senior or junior members of staff, customers or suppliers.

Carla has excelled in every aspect an employer could wish for.  Her attributes are many – she is loyal, reliable and trustworthy.  Her punctuality and attendance are faultless.  She is a hardworking, dedicated, efficient, enthusiastic, accurate, determined and organised person. She is relentless in her determination to achieve perfection in every aspect of her work.

I am devastated to be losing Carla due to her relocation to Manchester, but I have every confidence in recommending her to any employer. There is no doubt in my mind that she would be an asset to any company and they would be very fortunate if she chose to work for them.

Kevin McCarthy
Proprietor
AVL Systems

Everyone needs a Virtual Assistant / Carla in their life

Carla is nothing but spectacular to work with – she is professional, creative, dedicated and most of all fun!

Carla has made such a difference to me personally but also across the wider business. She has put together the most amazing presentations, which has helped the business secure all pitches at any business meetings I have attended. Not only that – Carla is a whiz at excel – she has designed spreadsheets which would baffle most Mathematicians!

On top of all this, she has resolved some of my biggest issues in the wardrobe department – weddings, holidays, awards nights and general day to day she gets me and know what suits me.

Quite simply she is wonder woman, I would be lost without Carla and will continue to use her as a Virtual Assistant, everyone needs a Carla in their life!

Liz Lee
Senior Team Manager
McCarthy Recruitment Ltd