When talking to clients who are hiring a Virtual Assistant for the first time, they will ask the question: how many hours do I need my VA to do? Usually, they have no idea – which is natural of course! So they will ask us what we think.
Our reply is always that we recommend a minimum of 40 hours per month (which equates to roughly 2 hours each working day). We’ve found that anything less than this can ultimately lead to disappointment, which reflects badly on our VAs, and us.
If you are considering hiring a VA and asking yourself this same question, then here are the main factors that we have observed with our own VAs and clients, which led us to that 40 hour number:
40 hours gives your VA a chance to add real value to your business
By offering a VA a position which has at a minimum of 2 hours per day (40 hours per month), you are not only showing your commitment to them, you are also giving them the time they need to properly understand and delve deep into your business. We’ve found this isn’t possible with less than 40 hours per month, despite how much 20-30 hours per month sounds on paper (which only equates to 45-60mins per day). 2 hours per day is sufficient time to allow your VA to prove their worth.
40 hours helps your business to scale
We often ask our prospective clients this question: “What would you do with an extra 40 hours a month”? When you hire a VA you’ll find you finally have time to spend on those things to which you’ve been meaning to dedicate time, and haven’t been able to. You know, the things that no one else can really do, like brand building, developing the product or service, client/customer meetings, etc. If, for example, you have your VA doing things that expand your network, e.g. email campaigns or social media, then you’ll be able to spend time actually winning new business. 40 hours a month ensures that your company can grow.
40 hours meets the need of entrepreneurs and small business owners
Most of our clients are entrepreneurs or small business owners, and we’ve noticed that they frequently underestimate the amount of time things on their ‘to do’ list take. Whether it’s a huge volume of small tasks or one really big task, there’s always unknown factors and challenges in growing businesses. For example, if you hire a VA partly because you want help running your social media, then they will need time to find compelling content to share, compose the posts, engage with your online audience, and make sure it’s all timely, varied and relevant. A week’s worth of posts can easily amount to 10 hours work.
40 hours ensures commitment and encourages initiative
Although we often say it, don’t think of a VA purely as a way to take things off of your to do list – a good VA, and indeed PA Business Support VAs, will seek to look for ways in which they can improve the efficiency of your business and add value where you may not have considered it. You want a VA who has a sense of ownership of their commitment to you, and the 40 hours (equating to 2 hours per day) gives them the space they need to nurture this. It also encourages them to share your own passion and enthusiasm for your company – which is a win-win scenario for everyone.
40 hours helps you stay focused on the things that really matter
Another thing our more entrepreneurial clients all tend to have in common is a tendency to want to do everything themselves (go on, admit it…), and if we had a penny for every client that told us they were ‘burning the candle at both ends,’ we’d be rich! If you’ve made it this far (thinking about hiring a VA) then you’ve come to an important realisation which will benefit not only your business, but your own personal wellbeing. The 40 hours minimum is our solid recommendation for achieving this.
If you’d like to find the perfect match at 40 hours a month, then give us a call – we’re happy to help!