Should My Business Hire a VA?

Hire virtual assistants versus full-time employees? is a question that more and more businesses are asking themselves. What often chases away business from the idea of outsourcing a personal virtual assistant is the tradition of on-site employees and the “sticker price.” Businesses often feel like they are succeeding when they can point to an every expanding roster of employees as a sign of growth. What that really shows is the growth of overhead and the commitment of resources to things that are not involved in producing and promoting their product. The hidden costs of on-site employees

What that really shows is the growth of overhead and the commitment of resources to things that are not involved in producing and promoting their product. The hidden costs of on-site employees are far greater than a business might expect. Office space, furniture, equipment, utilities, benefits, PTO, breaks, unproductive time, etc., are many but not all the costs involved in providing for an on-site employee. Add human resource needs to the mix, liabilities, and the current procedures necessary in letting someone go if they are not working out and we can see it’s not an apples to apples comparison.

The Virtual Assistant Networking Association provides a cost comparison:

Full-time Employee Virtual Assistant
Hourly Rate of Pay $20.00 $35.00
Fringe Benefits @ 35%

(Health/Dental/Life Insurance, Retirement Plans)

$7.00 None
Overhead Rate @ 50% (Office Space, Equipment & Office Supply Expense, UI Insurance, Worker’s Compensation, Overtime Pay, Administrative Costs) $10.00 None
Total Effective Rate of Pay $37.00 $35.00
**Hours Per Year 2,080 hrs 480 hrs
Total Annual Labor Cost $76,960.00 16,800.00

**Remember, with a Virtual Online Assistant, you only pay for the time on task by the minute. No more paying for socializing, hour long lunches, or frequent trips to the washroom.

Even if you want to quibble with the virtual assistant service rates above, the cost difference is so drastic, over 450%, that halving them would still prove to be a significant cost saving.  The other advantage, which was briefly and indirectly mentioned, is a virtual employee is a contract employee. This provides the employer with added flexibility over their hours and, if need be, their termination with no strings attached. The process of terminating a non-contract employee is both drawn out and labor intensive, could possibly require unemployment payments, and is a psychological drain on anyone who is involved. The wrong employee is a burden that no company wants to deal with for any length of time. This added benefit of a virtual employee could prove to be priceless for your sanity and the company’s moral.

The process of terminating a non-contract employee is both drawn out and labor intensive, could possibly require unemployment payments, and is a psychological drain on anyone who is involved. The wrong employee is a burden that no company wants to deal with for any length of time. This added benefit of a virtual employee could prove to be priceless for your sanity and the company’s moral.

On a more positive note, virtual assistants are often more experienced, more efficient, and more project oriented than a conventional employee.  They don’t approach tasks in the manner of how to make the task last across the provided time restrictions, they want to clock the hours and get it done since they are only being paid for the actual time worked.

On-site employees have a tendency to drag out the process until it is due destroying productivity.  A company is also the client of a Virtual Assistant, not their direct employer, and we all know people typically like to keep their clients happy by providing plus service.

These are merely a few of the general advantages of hiring virtual assistants. The deeper you dig into the cost and efficiency, the more advantages you will find.

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