What can a virtual PA/EA do?
It’s best to think of your virtual PA/EA in the same way as that of an office based PA/EA the only exception in the support we provide is that we’re virtual and therefore tasks that do require a physical presence cannot be done by a virtual PA/EA.
Nowadays, having your assistant in the same office location is no longer a necessity. Technology allows us all to work successfully from anywhere.
Why not take a few minutes to read more here.
Tasks you can easily outsource to Elite PA Solutions
I used to have a PA in my last job (and why you need a PA now!)
Hire a Virtual PA for better personal and liftstyle management
Or find out more on our Services page here
Why are virtual PAs/EAs important?
Our lifestyle, work pressures and personal lives can have a huge impact on the way we approach our work and whether we achieve that all important work-life balance.
Irrespective of the level of seniority, delegating some of your daily tasks to a personal assistant can be life changing.
By working with a virtual PA or virtual EA (Executive Assistant) you will benefit from an experienced extra pair of hands, someone to support you across the full working week for as little as half a day each week.
Take a few moments to read our articles below.
It’s time to drop the admin and focus on billable hours.
Are you trying to be an expert in every area of your business?
How do you partner me with a virtual Executive Assistant
We carefully screen, interview, meet and reference, where possible, qualified EAs who we believe share our core values and commitment to delivering a premium level service to our clients.
Our mission is to ensure your life runs more smoothly and therefore, it’s crucial that we match you with an assistant for the long term.
We only hire assistants who take you and your business as seriously as you do. Working with us means you will get a qualified, proactive EA who is based in the UK. Our team have all worked at a senior management level in their corporate, office roles and now support a variety of clients on a flexible basis.
How does a Virtual EA work?
Virtual Executive Assistants on our team are either employed by us or associates working on a freelance, self-employed basis under the umbrella of Executive PA Solutions.
Typically working from home for a variety of clients, managing their priorities and time for each client. All our virtual EAs are skilled career professionals who have a desire to support a variety of clients, to continue to utilise their core EA skills which they’ve honed for years in a traditional office-based role.
Members of our team require excellent interpersonal communication and strong writing skills, to be organised, proactive, results driven and comfortable in rapidly changing environments.
They are required to have their own home office set up with reliable internet connection and a dedicated place to focus.
This articles covers the Pros of working with a Virtual Agency
How can a Virtual EA help my business?
By delegating tasks, you will have the time you need to grow your business.
Quite simply we will give you back time and with that the freedom to focus on your priorities, your goals and what you do best!
Still struggling to identify how a virtual or personal assistant can help you, pop over to our blog or begin with these two articles.
How to Find 10 hours of Work You Shouldn’t be Doing
Why working with a Personal Assistant is great for your bank account
What would you say are the essentials for any virtual EA?
It isn’t just about finding someone with the skills you need, although that’s a big part of your search criteria.
The hiring of a virtual EA needs to be a safe and secure decision for any business owner. This is why there are certain non-negotiables a virtual EA needs to have in place, if you want your business to be in safe hands.
- Equipment: as self-employed they should provide their own equipment in order to deliver the work required, be aware of IR35 Regulations.
- Insurance: Professional Indemnity and Public Liability if attending your office or home in order to support you or your business.
- Data protection: registered with the ICO.
- GDPR compliant.
- Contracts: You both need to know what’s been agreed and where you stand.
- Password management system: for secure sharing of your personal data.
All virtual EAs that are part of the team here at Executive PA Solutions, need to have these essentials in place, prior to supporting a client of ours.
Book a time in Sandy’s diary to schedule a discovery call to discuss your requirements and hear how we can help.
What hours do you work?
Our office hours are 09:00 – 17:00 Monday to Friday.
Any time we spend supporting you out of hours is charged at 1.5 times the agreed hourly rate and needs to be pre-arranged and pre-agreed with your dedicated virtual EA.
Will I sign a Confidentiality Agreement or Non-Disclosure Agreement?
Yes, we will send you our Terms of Business for your approval and signature before we introduce you to your dedicated Virtual PA/Assistant and you commence working together.
We are very happy to sign NDA’s should it be required.
You can find more detail regarding our Terms of Business here Our Process Step 2 and click on Terms & Conditions.
Do you have client testimonials, and can I contact any of your clients direct?
You will find various testimonials and case studies on our website.
Should you wish to speak to one of our clients directly, we can certainly make these arrangements, with our client’s prior approval.
Do I need to pay upfront?
Yes, all our retainer packages are payable in advance, with 30 days notice required to dial up or turn down the number of hours each month.
How do you charge?
We charge by the hour, on a flat fee structure based on the actual time we spend working for you. Payment in advance by direct debit.
Any additional hours over the agreed retained hours are charge at the same flat hourly rate.
Our retainer packages are reviewed on a three monthly basis to ensure your usage is as accurate as possible.
What are your payment terms?
7 days upon receipt of our invoice, payment in advance of work commencing.
What software do you use?
We regularly use a wide variety of software across our client base, some of these include: –
Microsoft Office 365 include Word, Excel, PowerPoint, Outlook.
G-Suite (full suite)
Social media: Buffer, Hootsuite, Smarter Queue, Missing Lettr
Passwords: Dashlane or Last Pass
Accounting: Xero and Dext
Toggl (free time tracking)
Various CRMs including executive search systems FileFinder, Ezekia.
Project Management tools: Slack, Trello.
How do I communicate with my virtual EA?
In exactly the same way as you do or did with your office-based EA. By phone, what’s app, text message, facetime, Zoom it’s your personal preference. Our virtual EAs will implement weekly catch-up calls and schedule these into your diary in order for you both to discuss your priorities for the weeks ahead. In between these weekly meetings you are free to contact each other, as and when required.
Communication is an absolute pre-requisite. Without effective communication any relationship will struggle to blossom, and, in my opinion, the value add will be limited. We are big supporters of regular communication with all of clients.
You may find this article helpful.
How to communicate with a remote team
How to Build a Great Team Around You
Will I need certain tools in place before my virtual EA can start work?
As part of you onboarding your virtual EA you will set up their email account under your brand. Your virtual EA will mirror your current tools and slot into your current business set up. Whether that’s Dropbox, One Drive or Google Drive.
You will need to give permissions for your virtual PA to access your emails and diary if management of these is required. Rest assured, if we can see a way to improve your systems and processes, by introducing new tools to you, this will be discussed with you in advance.
Here’s an article we wrote a little while ago, The tools our team use every day & absolutely love.
Do you take calls or act as our switchboard?
We are very happy to receive calls relating to the client work we are undertaking on your behalf. However, we do not offer a ‘receptionist’ or call answering service.
We recommend that you source a call answering service provider, some of clients use Money Penny. We have not personally used them ourselves.
Why shouldn’t I Hire my own assistant?
In some cases, you should. Our team will work with you to decide what type of assistant best suits you, and if in-house support will be best for you, we will be the first to tell you.
We develop long-term partnerships. We do not want to waste your time, or ours, every requirement is different.
There are several reasons why in most cases, Virtual is best!
- You only pay for work completed.
- There are no overheads to fork out for.
- You get professional expert support in a cost-effective way.
- There are no recruitment fees, no tax, national insurance, no office space, or equipment costs. No holiday/sick/holiday pay.
If you need our support in identifying and onboarding a permanent PA, EA or Administrator as an employee for your business click here
What are your tips if I do decide to hire my own assistant?
A few things to think about which we hope, will assist you in making the right decision.
- Don’t let the fear of trying out a Virtual PA/EA stop you in your tracks. Get a good recommendation or use a trusted source.
- Be clear with what you want them to do. Give defined projects with clear instructions.
- Delegating can help you become more productive and increase results. Start slowly and increase the amount you delegate as your confidence in a person grows.
- Working with a Virtual PA/EA frees up your time to focus on your priorities and expand your business. Show your appreciation!
- Pay them well, just because they are working virtually doesn’t mean they shouldn’t get a fair wage. Remember, you only get the level of service that you are happy to pay for.