One of the biggest mistakes you can make in hiring a virtual assistant is to not budget properly. There have been a few times in the past I’ve experienced myself running into the issue of a client not being able to pay the final invoice because they didn’t allot for a project going over the hours they initially requested from me to work. That leaves stress on both the client and myself.
Hey, it happens. There’s a lot of things that can pop up in your business that you weren’t expecting that can cause you to move things around unexpectedly. But that’s why you should always make sure you have a solid overall budget for handling things so you’re never in the position of robbing Peter to pay Paul!
Fortunately, in the online business realm, having a VA versus an in-house employee carries great benefits for the pocket book. For instance, the cost of having a VA cuts your overhead and tax spending pretty much in half compared to someone you would have on payroll.
However, this fact often puts a stigma on a VA being cheap labor. I assure it’s not. Consider the title of “virtual assistant” as an umbrella that covers many, many skills and expertise that someone possesses who simply works from a virtual office.
So, managing your expectations of pay is important especially when you consider that the following charges have transferred to the VA: state & federal taxes, equipment & software, internet & phone services, travel and so on. While every state rates an administrative position differently, I firmly believe that a seasoned VA would, at minimum, have a base rate of $25.00. (This based off personal and colleagues’ experiences). However, I strongly encourage you to do your research. Every state is different, but it would be smart to consider all these things before making someone an offer to work for you.
Recall in Step 1 where I encouraged you to determine if your need for a VA is project-based (allotted number of hours) or on-going (6+ months of work). That is going to determine first and foremost if you’re looking at budgeting a one-time fee or if you need to expand your expectations for a longer period.
Start researching VA’s out there to see what some offer to give you a bigger scope. Many will have rates listed on their site for you which makes it a lot easier to understand. But to give yourself an idea of what it’s going to take, use the base rate above and start massaging that into your budget.
Visualize how many hours that breaks down for you AND how much more was just taken off your plate to concentrate on bigger things!