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Frequently Asked Questions

Below are some of the most frequently asked questions I receive.  If you have a question that you don't see an answer to, please contact me by phone, text or email and I'd be happy to answer it.

Is a Virtual Support provider the same as an employee?  Should I ask them for a resume?

No on both counts.  A virtual support provider is a business owner providing their services as an independent contractor, similar to hiring an electrician, plumber, etc.  They are not filling an employment position, but it is common for a virtual support provider to have a portfolio depending on the type of services they offer, and they usually have customer reviews or testimonials for your review.

Is a Virtual Support provider like a personal assistant?

There are some that do provide personal assistant services, of course, but most virtual support providers are there to provide business support on an as-needed, or ongoing basis.

What is the benefit of hiring virtual support, instead of an employee?  Is it more expensive or cheaper?

There are a lot of benefits to hiring virtual support, and typically it can be more cost effective.  Here are 10 reasons why virtual support can be better:

  1. There is no cost to you for office space, furnishings or equipment.  You are hiring the expertise and experience of the provider.

  2. You don't have to worry about coordinating work schedules.  You simply communicate with the provider about the work to be done, and agree on a expected due date, and forget about it.

  3. You are paying for the actual working time only.  No coffee breaks, water cooler chats, or bathroom breaks factor into the time you pay for.  It is usually much more cost effective to hire virtual support than an employee.

  4. There are no fringe benefits to pay for such as medical benefits, vacation, employer wage deductions, worker's compensation, etc.  The virtual support provider takes care of their own overhead costs.

  5. No staff training.   Most providers will already be proficient in whatever software or programs you are using when you hire them, and often offer specialized skills if that's what you require, or they will be responsible for their own training.

  6. As an independent business owner, a virtual support provider knows the importance of seeing the bigger picture, and understands the intricacies of running a business, so they can be a valuable sounding board for you.

  7. A virtual support provider invests in their own business, and themselves by having the software and tools available for the services they provide, and they invest in their own training to stay up to date of all the latest changes.

  8. Commuting is never a problem.  Your work will get done no matter the weather, traffic delays, etc.

  9. Perfect for seasonal or peak activity times.  Easier than hiring an employee for a short period of time.

  10. Evening and weekend assistance usually available.  No always that way with an employee.

Do I need to sign a contract?  How do I pay?

Yes, typically a virtual support provider will have you sign a contract or a letter of understanding, that states the terms of your working arrangement and agreement for payment, and it generally runs month to month, or for a specific period of time, such as in the case of project based work, which is not ongoing.  Payments are typically structured as monthly hourly retainer packages, or specific package pricing.  Payments are usually due up front and paid electronically.  Some project based pricing can be 50% up front and 50% upon completion.

I've never worked with someone "off-site", how do we communicate?

I understand how strange it can feel to work with someone you may never meet in person, but with technology today, and video meeting via Zoom, Skype, Facetime, etc., you will feel like we've met believe me.  Most virtual support providers will have an initial video meeting with a potential client to discuss their needs and answer any questions they may have.  Periodic video meetings may also occur during your time working together, and most providers will send weekly updates to their clients depending on what the two parties agree to in the beginning.

Contact Me

Let's Talk

In Canada  519-816-5771

In the U.S. 417-324-5771

Canadian Association of Virtual Assistants

Set up a time to talk with me about your business needs.

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