How Do I Know If I’m Ready to Hire an Assistant or Outsource?
A difficult decision many business owners have to make as they start to experience growth is whether or not they’re going to hire an assistant or just outsource the work as needed. There are many factors that go into this decision such as what is the nature of the work, how consistently will you have projects for your assistant to do, and does the overall ROI change if you bring in an assistant versus outsourcing it to VA.
Using an in-house assistant can be great but if the amount of work coming in slows up, you may be stuck paying an assistant who is no longer being productive for you.
Here a few signs that you’re ready to outsource some of your work:
You’re stuck doing work that is not in your zone of genius
When you’re doing work that’s meant for you, the time is flying by as you’re doing it. You’re feeling relaxed and you’re able to get a lot done while maintaining your sanity. You shouldn’t feel like you’re working. If you can do this all day, every day and just be happy – you’re in your zone. Stay there.
Conversely, if you’re losing your sanity and struggling to complete a task, you may want to consider outsourcing it. If you’re losing will power and it feels like the time is going backward, you’re more than likely working outside of sweet spot. You’re being inefficient.
When you are doing something that takes you away from what you’re most skilled at, you’re losing your company money by paying a non-expert (you), to perform tasks for your business. You wouldn’t hire an accountant to run your social media. Don’t hire yourself to do your company’s web design if you’re not a web designer. See where we’re going with this?
Part of being a savvy business owner is having the awareness to know what you should and should not be doing. There’s a strong chance that you’re not as effective as the expert VA you’d hire and that you’re actually providing your business a negative ROI.
Can Anyone Do This Task Instead of Me?
Another thing you should consider when making the choice to outsource is whether the task can only be done by you. If someone else can do the task, allow them to do it so that you’re able to free up your time to do things that are more profitable for your business.
Which tasks can only you perform in your business?
Take some time to consider what can be outsourced in your business and make a list of what you plan to do and what you plan on others doing. Follow your list, find good help and watch your business grow.
Financially Ready to Hire an Assistant?
Understanding which tasks to outsource is half the battle. Knowing whether or not you’re financially ready to outsource is another discussion. When considering the financials of outsourcing, the biggest question to ask yourself is how much would you be willing to pay for someone else to complete work for you? Consider your expected income, your profit margins, the return on your investment, then scale backward.
Is it worth paying someone to have more time? Outsourcing is the trade-off between time and money. If your business is more profitable with you completing all tasks yourself, then continue to do so.If your business is more profitable by outsourcing certain tasks, then we suggest you do that instead.
When it comes to the financials of outsourcing, there are multiple schools of thought. We provided a glimpse into the first one earlier – the returned model. Are your returns greater than your investments? If so, free up your time by outsourcing and let the profits flow.
There’s another school of thought when it comes to outsourcing and that’s the Profit First philosophy by Mike Michalowicz. Michalowicz looks at all business income and splits it into different accounts such as paying yourself, paying employees and contractors, general business expenses, recurring expenses, taxes and profits for your company. Michalowicz estimates that business expenses such account for approximately 30% of all general business revenue. It’s time to ask yourself, can you fit the salary of a virtual assistant for a few hours a week into your budget?
Conclusion: Trust Your Gut
Virtual assistants are not always pricey. It truly depends on the scope of work needed and the quality you’re expecting. Fortunately or unfortunately, you truly do get what you pay for when it comes to VAs. When you add a VA to your team, you can start small with just a few hours of work a week, then scale up based on what your business needs.
We promise, once you start delegating, you just won’t stop. It is addictive.