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5 Surprisingly Common Mistakes in Hiring a VA

Remote Workmate
5 Surprisingly Common Mistakes in Hiring a VA

Thinking of hiring a VA for your business or company? Virtual assistants are a great addition to any team. They help take menial tasks off your plate and give you time to focus on the more important aspects of your business.

Finding a VA that is the perfect match for you can be a tricky matter and mistakes in hiring are more common than you think, especially if this is your first time having a remote worker on your team. It’s important to get it right because a bad hire can cost you.

Additionally, a VA is only as good as their manager. A virtual assistant with years of experience and great skills but who is poorly managed won’t be able to add anything of value to your company or business. 

Fortunately, we’ve compiled the most common mistakes made when hiring a virtual assistant to help you avoid them as well as how to make the best of managing your VA. Hopefully these will help you prepare yourself for finding the best addition to your team and watching your business grow.

Mistake 1: Not properly vetting applicants

Secrets To Hiring An Administrative Virtual Assistant

This is the first step you need to get right if you don’t want to end up with a VA that’s going to make you tear your hair out instead of lightening your workload. Vetting your VA candidates ensures you end up with someone you won’t have any qualms trusting your business or company with. 

Here’s a detailed hiring process that you can use to properly vet applicants:

  1. A detailed job description
  2. Tests to verify administrative knowledge and duties, and specialized skills
  3. Background checks on their references and on their social media
  4. Video interview while going through their resumé. 

It’s also important to not just check their skills and experience, but also their personality to see if they’re a good fit with your company culture.

Mistake 2: Unclear goals and expectations for your VA

Never assume that your VA knows what you want and need without you communicating this to them. When you interview them, be clear about what your vision, goals, and business objectives are for your company and what their role is in making sure these are achieved.

In fact, it’s best to include all that in the job description already so you spend less time going through candidates with less experience and qualifications for the job. Other important things to include on the description would be:

  • Scope of work
  • Skills required
  • How they’ll be managed

By communicating effectively with your VA, you can be sure that both of you are on the same page with no misunderstandings, only a smooth work relationship.

Mistake 3: Not taking the time to train your VA


Yes, even though you’ve vetted your hired VA and you know they are capable of doing the job, some proper training is still required. They may have the skills but they’re not familiar with how things work in your company and how to work with your other employees.

Onboarding is a very important process in ensuring your VA knows what to do, what tools to use, who to work with for particular tasks. This is done on their very first day of work so they can familiarize themselves with workflows and standard operating procedures. 

Onboarding helps them adapt quickly so you don’t have to micromanage them constantly (which is also annoying for them). Still, it’s also a good idea to do occasional check-ins with your VA to make sure they’re doing well and to ask if there’s anything they need to work effectively.

Mistake 4: Not having proper SOPs in place

Having set Standard Operating Procedures or SOPs in your company or business makes training your VA and their work easier. It makes workflow more streamlined, efficient, and you don’t have to worry about your VA getting confused. You can have peace of mind leaving them to do their work.

Help your VA familiarize themselves with the software, platforms, apps, and other systems that are used routinely in your company and how it all connects to the overall workflow and processes of your organization.

Mistake 5: Expecting your VA to be a one-stop shop

virtual assistant in the philippines

As time passes and your VA gets into the flow of things, it could be tempting to assign them work that isn’t on their job description just to free up more of your time. You shouldn’t do this.

Many people hire VAs expecting them to be one-stop shops for tasks, from bookkeeping to graphic design to social media management. Not only does this blindside your VA from what they signed up for, it creates resentment and a distaste for completing their tasks and goals. And if the person you hired is the type to please you and tries to take every task in stride, all this does is break their focus and they end up only giving 50% for each task. Remember that what attracts VAs to remote work is it gives them the work-life balance they need.

Again, expectations and communication should be clear from the start. Virtual assistants are people, not machines. When you treat them like robots, the VA you’ve come to depend on for some time may suddenly quit and you’re back to square one.

Partner with us

When you work with us, you can be sure of avoiding all the hiring mistakes above! We do all the vetting, interviewing (only you do the finale one), and we help you with onboarding.

Remote Workmate has partnered with over 100 clients worldwide providing excellent virtual assistants from the Philippines. Book an obligation-free discovery call with us today so we can talk more about your hiring needs.

Go to: www.remoteworkmate.com/get-started

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