An increasing number of entrepreneurs incorporate outsourcing as a business strategy. And it makes sense, bringing in expertise from the outside to deal with specific functions or tasks within their businesses.
Here is a list of four best practices to optimise your outsourcing strategy.
If you’re in an industry like ours you will often find your task-list much longer than realistically possible to tick off. You look at it and think ‘Where on earth do I start? What do I do first?! It all looks important!’
In situations like these, we use a nifty tool to help us prioritise tasks and decide which ones to work on first.
Doing business is all about ROI – you’re either aiming for an increased outcome or a result that adds measurable value to your business. Don’t get discouraged by how daunting ROI might sound, if you think about it, it is quite a simple concept and your Virtual Assistant can help you achieve it by taking certain tasks off your hands.
In today’s market businesses are looking to scale or expand through outsourcing which is why you need a partner who is results-driven and who will take responsibility for the tasks you hand to them. Here is our take on choosing the right outsourcing partner to ensure a good return on your investment.
Sohané first joined AdminAssist in 2017. Sohané has served an incredibly diverse set of clients ranging from consulting firms, clinical research specialists, copywriters and has attended various board meetings as a minute-take. She also supports the directors at AdminAssist with a wide range of tasks including taxes, blog writing and research.
Don’t underestimate the time you can save or the increase in productivity to be gained by letting your VA use the right tools. Being ruthless about what you spend time on and investing in tools that help you save time, is vitally important when navigating an ever-changing world of business where time is of the essence.
You’re probably familiar with the SMART goal-setting model which can be applied to task allocation too. Adding to your arsenal of effective communication, structuring task allocation will foster a productive working arrangement.
It was Nelson Henderson who said, “The true meaning of life is to plant trees, under whose shade you do not expect to sit.” And how that impacts the way we look at our day-to-day actions and even at how we plan for our future.
Nicole has been with AdminAssist as a Virtual Assistant since April 2017. Nicole has a wide range of skills that she brings to the table, ranging from content writing, research, diary management and other general administration tasks.
This week we chat to Mandy Swanepoel, one of the assistants who has been with AdminAssist the longest! Mandy serves as a virtual assistant to a client of ours who is based in Michigan, America.
It is important to understand that even though you might not be sharing an office space or have physical meeting sessions with you VA, any good working relationship is built on a few basic principles that ensure an effective and productive workflow that achieves set outcomes.
A big part of working with a VA is managing expectations and clarifying tasks and objectives. For this reason, we cannot stress enough the importance of communication between you and your VA.
You are always working, always trying to stay ahead of the game, drowning in emails, arranging flights, following up on work for the umpteenth time no matter how late it keeps you busy. Perhaps it causes you to miss another birthday celebration and your family has just about had it with you. The good news? There is a solution!
When we are balanced we are never perfectly still. We are always making little corrections, adjusting our weight, changing our grip, moving a little more to one side and then the other. Sometimes while we are balancing it doesn’t feel like we are at all! We share three vital facets of balance we need to understand, especially as it pertains to our work and personal life.
This week we chat to Lourita Stofberg who is the founder of AdminAssist and takes charge of the Finances and Helicoptering. Lourita has traveled extensively and can take you on wild adventures with her storytelling abilities!
Establishing good channels of communication is vital. No business can exist without it and this is particularly true for your relationship with your Virtual Assistant. Here are a few tips on touching base with your VA .
Here are 5 important tasks that can help you delegate your time more effectively and boost productivity.
In every company there are bound to be repetitive tasks that, although vital to the running of your business, are time-consuming. Here’s a list of things you can give to your Virtual Assistant to free up your time to spend on the tasks only you can do, or enjoy doing
The more evolved you become as a leader, you will find less of your choices are simply black or white, simply wrong or right. Often your choice is between good and slightly better or bad and slightly worse.
Este is known for being our Excel Guru as she sure knows how to get data organised in a way that is simple and easy to understand! To further her already diverse admin capabilities, Este has recently completed a Sage One Accounting Course and passed with a whopping 92.97% average.
There are several well-made arguments for why you should outsource aspects of your business to a Virtual Assistant and what it could mean for your growth. On the other hand, there are a few myths that cloud virtual assistance.
“…learn to delegate — sooner or later you will have to get some help in order to grow. Delegation takes a huge amount of effort, patience and practice, but when you master it, it’s extremely powerful — just look at Richard Branson!”
Every movie, project, or company is only as good as the individuals behind it, which is why we have decided to start a series of articles called “Meet the Team” which will run the last week of every month. This way you get a peek behind the curtain; to see who is making the magic happen at AdminAssist, what makes them qualified, and most importantly, what makes them different!
In an ideal world, you would be able to delegate all the tasks you dread. It is an important ideal because the quality of our work is so much better when we do something we’re good at and/or enjoy than when we plod through something that drains our energy. But, life happens!
Here are some very useful ways to ease the burden.
Recently one of our trusted Virtual Assistants took to the streets to compare prices of a few products that many of us add to our shopping baskets on a weekly basis. Why? We want to determine which grocery store offers the lowest prices in South Africa.
You have come to the realisation that you not only need to free up your time, but you also need space to focus on generating more revenue for your business. You’re eager to hire a virtual assistant and curious to know how much you should expect to pay for top-notch support.
Burnout is common amongst over-achievers and you should feel no shame if you suspect you suffer from it. Even if it is difficult to do, you are now at a point where some changes in your life are necessary.
As you’re living your busy life it is easy for stress to creep up on you, but if you keep your eyes open for these warning signs, you can act fast.
You’ve taken the step to hire a Virtual Assistant (VA). You’ve done the research, compared the options, signed the agreement and you linked with your VA. But now you may find yourself thinking, “I’m so busy. I barely have time for myself. Where will I find the time to train and on-board an assistant?!”
Don’t worry. You’re not alone. These are the small steps we suggest for getting you set up for success for the long haul.
Reflecting on meetings is an ordinary and necessary part of business. Assurance that the meeting went well and that you covered all your bases gives you peace of mind while you wait for the outcome. Good minute taking hinges on skill. Is the person that is taking...
GUEST BLOG – These 5 hacks will make your road office and road office experience more efficient. Using these hacks, you will be more organized, efficient and able to transfer information digitally and physically. These are critical things when setting up an office on the road which not only allows you to be successful but will also allow you to maximize your free time to enjoy all the benefits of working on the road.
Your virtual personal assistant is your right hand (wo)man. It is important for you to know that together you can achieve the best possible outcomes. We share 3 types of VA personalities and how they might complement your needs.
Welcome in the new year with a new approach! Lightening your load and dedicating more time to yourself is how you should be spending 2019.
To take away some of the anxieties you have about flying, our stellar Virtual Assistants thought they’d let you in all their flight-booking secrets that can save you some time, a couple of coins and a ton of travel stress!
Hiring a Virtual Assistant can take the pressure off various aspects of your life. The holiday season is ironically one of the busiest times of the year so having someone there to lighten the load for you either in your business or your personal life can afford you much needed time to rest and relax.
While school’s out and the kids are enjoying a much-needed break from the books, this just means more juggling for you to do! You must keep them entertained all while trying to keep afloat amidst the hustle and bustle of the festive season? Seems like a lot, even for a seasoned mom or dad.
Business leaders in South Africa need some time to pause. We need to sit still, become quiet and listen to our own thoughts because our thoughts influence our perspective, our perspective influences our words and actions, and our words and actions influence those around us…
It feels like just yesterday when we were ringing in the new year! It’s hard to believe that we have a little over one month left till the end of 2018. And the next few weeks always prove to be the busiest time of the year for small businesses and individuals alike. It is easy to fall victim to the annual end-of-year fever, and we don’t blame you. There’s so much to do, but so little time.
Taking control of your finances is a tough yet necessary task we have to take on as fully-fledged adults. While it may happen more often than we’d like to admit, a lot of us find ourselves crawling into the next month. What would be the logical solution to this issue?
Municipality accounts, marketing material, expense slips (receipts), marketing letters, notes from a meeting, letters from school, party invitations…. Apparently, we’re living in a world that is more and more virtual, but with all this paper it certainly doesn’t feel like we’re in the electronic age!
Left unchecked, your paperwork can get out of control. How do you get it back?
Minutes should capture the purpose of a meeting, the agreed outcomes and can be used for follow-up purposes. But, just how much detail should be included in a set of minutes?
According to recent survey data released by wireless presentation specialists Barco, a person will spend more than 8 hours a week in meetings. That equals about 11 weeks a year. Further, 59% of people feel their engagement is affected by the number of meetings in a day.
I’m sure we can all think of the many meetings we have unnecessarily attended. Times when we have been unclear of the outcomes or felt frustrated that a subsequent meeting has covered exactly the same topic.
Here are 4 tips on how you can host effective and valuable meetings.
Meetings are an important part of everyday business life. Meetings are a hub for brainstorming fresh ideas, solving problems, interacting with clients, and getting familiar with staff. Without them, your work life would be absolute chaos. However, a meeting only poses useful when all the crucial discussion points were properly noted.
Whether for an all-day strategy session, a monthly sales meeting or a quick internal meeting, getting someone professional, like an admin assistant, to take minutes makes perfect business sense. Here are 5 reasons why you should outsource the minute-taking of your meetings.
The average person in this day and age has a ton of things to get through every day which begs the question if 24 hours is really enough time to get everything done. Before you know it, your short days become so consumed with tedious yet necessary tasks, that one forgets to simply look up, breathe in and just enjoy the time one never seems to have.
One of the many benefits of working with a Virtual Assistant (VA’s) is the ability to tap into services anywhere in the world. One could argue time zone differences could challenge this thought, however…
Picture this: Send a piece of work to your VA in a different time zone and call it a night. When you hit the alarm for a 5-minute snooze the next morning, that very same piece of work is completed, ready to go, in your inbox.
Often overlooked, following up with customers or potential clients can open up new opportunities, bring money into your company, and generate new business.
No matter how business savvy, smart or talented you are, your success as a business owner depends on your ability to mobilise and motivate a team. Your clients know that you have integrity and can always get the work done according to their requirements, but what about your team? Do they share the same traits?
That’s the concern of many entrepreneurs when they consider hiring their first assistant. After all, they’ll be working remotely with someone they may never have met, how do they know that they can trust a virtual assistant?
Thankfully, tax season doesn’t have to be as daunting anymore. You don’t have to do your own taxes, and no one will judge you for it. You can get your accountant to do it for you, or you can hire a Virtual Assistant who also just happens to be a certified tax practitioner, to do the tedious task on your behalf.
Good employee communication is essential to running a successful company. If you haven’t made changes to your communication policy in recent years, it’s time to look at how SMS marketing can improve communication.
We share 3 reasons why outsourcing your business transcription is something you should consider.
Outsourcing your accounting processes can prove to not only be beneficial to your company, but to your sanity, too. Knowing that an expert is handling your finances with the utmost diligence is sure to allow any business owner a peaceful night’s sleep. We share a comprehensive list of benefits of outsourcing your back-office accounting.
Do what you do best. Outsource your data capturing needs! Data entry is a powerful yet underrated tool if you’re looking to nurture the growth of your business. Information is key in achieving your objectives. Furthermore, using the information you have collected,...
In recent years, multiple research studies haven shown that the open-plan workspace may not be as effective as we would like to think. According to a research study published in the Journal of Environmental Psychology that focused on over 40 000 workers in 300 + U.S. companies, has revealed that open-plan offices don’t work.
Virtual assistance is a relatively new practice around the world, so it is but only expected that most people do not fully understand it and what it entails. As with most topics that aren’t fully understood, it is only natural that there be a few misconceptions flying around about this new but revolutionary way of doing things.
In the last couple of years, the Business Process Outsourcing (BPO) sector has made major waves in South Africa. Businesses overseas are taking notice of South Africa’s favourable offshoring opportunities. So much so, that South Africa was named Best Offshoring...
Your business is your baby and outsourcing your back-office operations may seem like a huge risk.
Here’s a list of common outsourcing fears many business owners can’t seem to shake off (and how they can!).
We live in a time where the perceptions your customers and clients have about your company can either make or break your business. The customer experience is now more important than ever because it is the foundation on which your reputation is built.
Office politics are nearly inevitable if you work in an environment of two or more people. The dynamics of the workplace can even be vastly different between two colleagues of the same company. Although most the minds of most people immediately jump to the superior...
With the new year in full swing, we are all dying to know what the next 10 months have in store for us! We are also curious to know what it is we can do to make 2018 better, in all aspects of our lives.
We thought it would be insightful to look at 5 trends Forbes has predicted will take the business world by storm this 2018.
Ready to be surprised? 🙂 Last year proved to be a big year for us and we want to share how 2017 equipped us to better serve you this year and how it has shaped our plans for the next 12 months.
Office politics (n): the activities, attitudes, or behaviours that are used to get or keep power or an advantage within a business or company.
More commonly defined, office politics is about the differences in opinions, and conflicts of interests between people in the workplace.
There are countless reasons why many of us fail to pursue our resolutions, let alone achieve them. And while some goals prove to be more challenging than others, with the right plan and mindset, we can all be super resolution achievers!
According to a recent study, the time required for filling a vacant job position across the globe has grown rapidly, averaging almost 23 days from first contact to offer acceptance. This piece of information is enough to scare of even the most desperate employers.
The 21st century has brought about many changes, and in turn this has given birth to new challenges and thus fresh thinking. This cannot ring truer in the working world. Companies have become more reliable on technology and are starting to introduce the concept of a multi-generational workforce, which has created the need for new company practices. Because companies are operating in a world that is dynamic and ever-changing, they need to ensure that their practices and policies are up to date and are best suited for an equally dynamic workforce.
If you are running a business then you know that payroll is typically the number one concern for most small business owners. Handling payroll can be a challenging aspect of running your small business. Apart from the grueling admin that goes along with it, you need to consider factors such as the business and tax laws surrounding payroll. This is enough to intimidate even the most experienced of entrepreneurs.
It feels like just yesterday when we were ringing in the new year! It’s hard to believe that we have a little over two months left till the end of 2017. And the next two months always prove to be the busiest time of the year for small businesses and individuals alike. It is easy to fall victim to the annual end-of-year fever, and we don’t blame you. There’s so much to do, but so little time.
We all know a guy like Steve. Steve who comes to work with a creased white shirt every morning, and always manages to get a coffee stain before 10 am. Steve whose corner desk is always a mountain of absolute clutter, with the occasional pizza slice lurking from days ago. Steve reminds you of someone at the office, doesn’t he? And if he doesn’t, then you’re probably Steve.
Social media has made work more fun. No one thought that it would be completely okay to be on Facebook for work, for example. In 2007, people would have accused you of pulling a fast one saying that you are online doing work on Facebook. What micro-managers have had to learn is that it is far more effective to expand brand awareness online. This way you reach more people and create opportunities for sales that did not exist previously.
The road to becoming the host with the most is no easy feat, and unless you’re a seasoned party planner, you are most likely to come across a few obstacles that might take the wind out of your sails when trying to show up and show out for your next affair.
While email could arguably be the best thing since sliced bread, sorting through your inbox can be an intimidating task. In fact, most of us hate the thought of having to dig through our mailbox.
Therefore, we have compiled a couple of tips that will make sorting through your inbox a lot more bearable.
Have you ever asked yourself the question ‘Why do I need a Virtual Assistant if I am still going to get to the office in the morning and find an intimidating inbox?’
Virtual Assistants are not just pretty faces, thank goodness, they are the ‘go to’ people and they specialise in bringing normalcy to your rather extraordinary busy days. So why keep calm?
Business people around the world seem to agree that it is wise to include a Virtual assistant in one’s team, a person or group that meet a certain criteria. Many have said that the following holds some truth.
Hiring or sourcing a service is a question of confidence. Confidence in yourself, that you will be able to meet the requirements of the arrangement. There are a lot of cloud-based tools out there designed to make admin a lot more bearable and less time-consuming, but...