Recruiting, Technology

4 Reasons Why a Virtual Assistant Could Be Your Next Great Hire

Employee burnout has become an epidemic, with countless workers feeling overwhelmed, unfulfilled, and ready to quit their jobs. Companies across all industries have been struggling to find ways to keep their workforce engaged and retained. However, many have overlooked one potential solution that can significantly improve employees’ day-to-day experience: hiring a virtual assistant (VA).

VAs are independent contractors who provide administrative, technical, or creative support to clients remotely. They can handle a wide range of repetitive, time-consuming tasks like scheduling appointments, managing e-mails, data entry, customer service, and more. By outsourcing these duties to skilled VAs, companies can free up valuable time, meaning they could be your next great hires rather than in-house members of the team. 

Allow Staff to Work on Meaningful Tasks

One of the biggest perks of securing a virtual hire is being able to free your employees from tedious administrative tasks. VAs can take on a variety of repetitive and administrative tasks like scheduling appointments, managing e-mail inboxes, coordinating travel, filing paperwork, entering data, etc. With such tasks taken care of, staff are freed up to focus on more complex, meaningful, or detailed work. 

Employees reportedly spend an average of 40% of their working weeks on manual administrative tasks. That’s valuable time that could be better spent on value-adding activities for your business. With a VA handling these responsibilities, your employees can dedicate their time and mental focus to the core projects and responsibilities they were hired for. For example, rather than spending an hour each day booking meetings and replying to basic e-mails, your sales team could devote that time to having deeper conversations with prospects. Similarly, HR staff could draft higher-quality job descriptions instead of manually entering candidate data. 

The right VAs become an extension of your team. They keep admin workflows running smoothly in the background, allowing your employees to achieve greater productivity and take on more strategic initiatives. This leads to higher job satisfaction, as staff feel empowered to take on work they find truly meaningful. It’s a win-win for your employees’ time and your company’s bottom line.

Bridge Talent Gaps Cost-Effectively

Hiring full-time employees with certain specialized skills can be expensive and time-consuming, but VAs allow you to access niche talents on a budget. For example, you could use a VA who’s an expert in graphic design for marketing materials, data analysis and visualizations, SEO, or video editing. Rather than spending months trying to recruit and hire the perfect candidate, companies can identify freelance VAs who already have these precise capabilities. Whether you bring them on for just the hours you need to fill the skills gap or on a long-term basis, it’s an affordable way to augment your team with critical expertise quickly.

The flexible, project-based nature of VAs allows your company to adapt its human capital according to evolving business needs. You get to “try before you buy” and determine if it’s worth hiring full time for a given role. VAs provide scalable talent exactly when you require it and in areas your business is currently lacking. 

Reduce Burnout to Aid Staff Retention

In addition to improving productivity and satisfaction, hiring a VA can also boost employee retention. Burned-out employees are far more likely to quit their jobs in search of less stressful work. By taking over tedious and repetitive tasks, VAs directly address one of the main drivers of burnout. Employees feel a renewed sense of energy and focus when they don’t have a huge admin workload bogging them down on top of their core duties. Removing the burden of mundane work makes their jobs more sustainable and enjoyable long term.

Beyond relieving burnout, bringing on a VA also demonstrates to employees that their time and well-being are valued. Rather than feeling as if they’re being replaced by VAs (or artificial intelligence (AI) tools), employees will feel validated by effective leaders, who can remove any ambiguity and justify their reasons for adopting VAs. In doing so, they will clarify how valued their employees’ personal skills are. 

Employees recognize that leadership wants to create an environment where they can thrive. A company will justify that it’s investing in external support so staff don’t have to shoulder administrative minutiae. This leads to greater loyalty to the organization and means you don’t need to constantly hire and train new employees to keep up with demand. High turnover results in steep costs related to recruiting, hiring, training, and loss of productivity. Avoiding these costs through improved retention powered by VAs is therefore a smart financial move. 

Benefit from Scalable Business Solutions

One of the major advantages of working with VAs is the flexibility they can provide as your business grows and evolves. It’s much simpler to adjust the workload and hours of a VA than to add or remove full-time employees. 

In times of sudden increased demand or rapid growth, hiring additional VAs allows you to quickly and cost-effectively scale up your capacity and capabilities. The onboarding process is faster, and you only pay for the specific hours of support you need. This on-demand scalability enables your business to seamlessly handle growth spurts and busy seasons.

Similarly, during periods of decreased demand or tightened budgets, you have the flexibility to reduce your virtual capacity and pull back VAs’ involvement on certain projects. Because VAs aren’t full-time employees, you can optimize your resources and control costs more responsively. This agility helps maintain financial stability during unpredictable market conditions. The ups and downs of business needs can be easier to navigate with virtual fluid and adaptable support. 

It’s obvious that bringing on a VA can be hugely advantageous for your business and employees. By offloading tedious administrative work, your team is freed up to focus their energy on more meaningful core projects. This shows employees their time and well-being are priorities, boosting engagement and motivation. With the ability to cost-effectively scale expertise up or down as needed, your business gains agility. So, if your goal is to empower your team, retain top talent, or grow your business efficiently, explore how a VA could be a game-changing hire. 

Chester Avey is a Guest Contributor at HR Daily Advisor.

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