During the prep stage, decide whether you want to hire an individual remote personal assistant or a company providing them.
Companies vary in their working practices. Some employ their assistants full time, with competitive wages and healthcare to get the best work out of them. Others are more like Uber, treating the assistants as freelancers and taking a percentage of their revenues in return for connecting them to customers. Some have staff working together in an office, where they receive training, coaching, and the social benefits of being surrounded by colleagues. Others have staff who work from home.
Another important distinction is in the sort of service you get from a company. Some will provide you with a dedicated assistant whose job is to provide your virtual support. At others, tasks will be assigned on an individual basis to whoever is available, relying on the company’s systems to inform them about your preferences. The consistency of service you get therefore varies from company to company.
Whatever its approach, working with a company helps provide continuity of service. Because they have multiple virtual assistants, they’ll be able to provide a substitute when your regular assistant isn’t available due to holidays or sickness.
Companies invest in technology to ensure the quality and efficiency of work. For example, software can record your preferences and remind your remote executive assistant of when to apply them.
Some companies also have specialists who can be assigned for a set portion of your hours. These might be travel bookers, IT support, social media experts, or others with valuable skills and experience. Hiring through a company gives you access to a range of specialist skills without having to hire several separate remote assistants.
There are other ways to get the most out of working with a company. Ask what sorts of clients stick with them long-term, as this will highlight what sort of work they’re best at. The company should also be able to offer advice on how to make best use of their services.
The balance of costs and benefits is going to affect whether you go with a company or an individual. If you can afford it then the benefits of a company are hard to argue with.