After weeks of processing and interviewing, you’ve finally hired a virtual assistant. They’ve got a solid resume, with plenty of experience. Best of all, they’re a perfect fit for your business personality-wise.
You’re understandably excited about where they can take your business.
But as the days, weeks, and months pass, you notice that… well… the virtual assistant that you hired months back is entirely different from the one working for you now.
Despite everything, it looks like their performance has declined big time over the past few weeks.
Why’s that? Well, it could be because they’re working more than one job!
Why working multiple jobs is a bad thing
When your virtual assistant is working for you, you’ll want to ensure that they’re working for you – not anyone else.
Their work for you won’t be as high-quality
How well do you perform when you’re…
- Not getting enough time to unwind?
If you’re anything like the rest of us, the answer is probably “not very well!”
Needless to say, that’s exactly what happens when your virtual assistant works two different jobs at once.
Conflict of interest
Hiring virtual staff is quickly becoming a popular choice for many small business owners. From retailers, to IT businesses, to finance businesses, more and more business owners are getting on the virtual staffing train.
As such, there’s a slim chance that some of your competitors may be recruiting!
With virtual staffing increasing in popularity, there’s a slim ( but very much real) risk that any virtual assistant that’s balancing two jobs may be working for one of your competitors.
What should you be on the lookout for? 4 red flags to look out for
Red flag #1: your VA is hard to contact
We’ve said it countless times before, but we’ll say it again: communication is key.
In addition to facilitating smooth operations in spite of the distance and time zone difference however, communication is also a dead giveaway that your virtual assistant is working more than one job!
Ideally, your virtual assistant will respond to your emails and chats. If they aren’t, that could be a sign that they’re trying to balance two (or more) jobs.
Another thing to watch carefully is their responses. Do they periodically use the wrong names or talk about clients and projects you’ve never heard of?
If so, you might want to look a bit more closely at what they’re doing while they’re on your dollar!
Red flag #2: they give lame excuses (that don’t make sense!)
Let’s be clear: while your virtual assistant finder will do their best to find applicants who are great at their jobs, the fact of the matter is that at the end of the day, they’re still human.
While not ideal, occasional slip-ups or delays are to be expected. And there’s nothing wrong with that.
The problem arises when:
- They happen frequently
- Your virtual assistant’s excuses just don’t sound right
Here’s an example: say your VA has missed a deadline. Not a big deal, it happens sometimes. But when you ask why, they say that they’ve had a “lot of work on their plate.”
Hold up one minute. It’s the slow season right now… not to mention, you know for a fact you haven’t assigned them that many tasks!
Sure, not all cases are going to be this clear-cut. However, if you get the vibe that your virtual assistant may be trying to have the best of both worlds, it’s might be a good idea to ask.
Red flag #3: Their timesheets show lots of empty spaces
At VirtualStaff365, we don’t just look after the recruitment process for you – what sets us apart is how we help you manage your virtual staff too.
One of the tools we provide to assist with that is time-tracking software. These programs measure how much time your virtual assistant has spent on each individual project, ensuring your VAs stay on-task.
Now, falling a little bit behind on the occasional project or task isn’t the end of the world.
However, if you notice that certain projects or tasks are taking considerably longer than the assigned time frame however, you may want to take note.
Since most virtual staffing arrangements are paid hourly, what some VAs will do is log into your time tracking software.
Instead of doing work, however, they’ll simply leave it open, racking up time and “earning” money while they’re actually working on a project for another employer (or vice-versa!)
Another thing to note: many time tracking platforms will take periodic screenshots so you can see what’s going on. If you notice projects and tasks in these screenshots that aren’t on their task list, your VA may be trying to work two jobs at once.
Hire virtual staff and retain them with the help of VirtualStaff365!
Virtualstaff365 helps you source, hire, and retain virtual assistants that help you grow on your business.
Our team thoroughly interview, cross-check and test applicants, ensuring that when you hire virtual staff, they’ll work for you – and just you.
Unlike other virtual staffing agencies, our recruitment process is exhaustive – we believe the mark of a good agency is how few applicants we forward to you, not how many!
Find out how we can help your business grow – contact us at (03) 8842 4300 or click here to set up a tailored outsourcing solution for your business.