Does location matter when hiring a Virtual Assistant? It’s a common query asked by many a business owner, but it’s also an understandable question. With virtual working becoming more commonplace, especially since COVID; business owners want to ensure they’re getting the best Virtual Assistant for them. So, does it matter where your Virtual Assistant is based or are you still limited to keeping your hiring local to your business?
Strictly speaking, no, location doesn’t matter
The advantage of virtual working is you can work from any location and your clients can be anywhere in the world. However, that doesn’t always mean you should hire from anywhere. There will be times when location does need to be factored into your outsourcing decisions.
There are practical elements to consider
For one-off jobs, such as book cover creation or website setup, it doesn’t always matter where in the world your virtual worker is based. However, there may be practical elements that need to be considered, due to the type of role you’re looking to fulfil. Here’s a few you need to think about when looking to hire a Virtual Assistant:
Think about timezones
If you need a Virtual Assistant who is available during your working hours, then you need to ensure you’re in the same time zone. Need inhouse meeting management? Then they’ll also need to be able to travel to your location. The role of your Virtual Assistant is to support you and, if that involves being on hand when you’re working, being available to deal with last-minute launch hiccups or handling your customer service calls, then the timezone they’re in is going to matter.
The English language has many nuances and finding a Virtual Assistant who understands them, is something that will be important for certain aspects of the job. For example, if you’re looking for someone to write blog posts, create written content or fulfil proofreading and/or copywriting tasks, you need someone who is proficient with UK and not US English.
Costs will fluctuate, depending on location
Obviously, the location of a Virtual Assistant can have an impact on the prices they’re charging, especially when you look further afield and factor in the cost of living. The current industry standard in the UK is between £25 to £30 an hour.
An American Social Media Manager for example, will charge higher rates than a UK based one, whereas a Philipino or Indian SMM may charge a lower rate again. This doesn’t mean the standards are lower, but it does mean you have to check that they’re fully insured and compliant (Think data protection and GDPR for a start), as well as being clear on the requirements and expectations of the job.
Suitability is more important
Quality of service, levels of experience and overall expertise will all impact on fees charged, as will location. But what’s most important is that when you’re hiring a Virtual Assistant you find one that suits your requirements and needs. If you’re looking for a Virtual Assistant who specialises in certain tasks, software or skills, then you may need to widen or narrow your search radius by location.
Location doesn’t always matter when hiring a Virtual Assistant. There will, however, be times when it has to play a part in your overall outsourcing choices. It’s only by getting clear on your needs, as well as the skills, knowledge and experience your ideal Virtual Assistant must possess, that you’ll find a Virtual Assistant that you can work well with.