How to hire a virtual assistant

How to hire a virtual assistant

Your business is doing great - you’ve got lots of customers, your revenue is growing, but you’re constantly feeling overwhelmed and wish you had more time to get things done. Sound familiar? Maybe you already know your business could be more efficient, if only you had a virtual assistant fairy to help you get things done. We hear you. If you’ve already uncovered the tasks that you could outsource in your business, then the next step is working out how to hire a virtual assistant.

Hiring a virtual assistant can help your business to continue to improve and grow through increased productivity and freeing up your time to focus on the big picture. Imagine having more time to nurture customer relationships, network with other business owners, or even better yet, spend time with your family.

When considering hiring a virtual assistant, one of the first things you need to look at is the skills that a virtual assistant needs. These skills should be based on the jobs or tasks that you need help to complete to make your business more efficient.

What skills does a virtual assistant need?

A virtual assistant needs skills to assist business owners in completing tasks across a range of areas within their business. Some of the most common skills a virtual assistant needs are:

  • Strong computer skills 
  • Good communication skills
  • Polite phone and online etiquette
  • Social media knowledge and skills
  • Fast and accurate typing 
  • Basic graphic design skills
  • Basic website editing/maintenance knowledge

What can I get a virtual assistant to help with?

A virtual assistant can help with any number of things in your business. You can have a virtual assistant help with:

  • Administration and reception duties
  • Creating new documents
  • Answering your calls
  • Replying to emails
  • Making appointments
  • Creating graphics or images
  • Creating basic flyers
  • Invoicing and accounts
  • Website maintenance
  • Social media management
  • Managing emails and scheduling appointments
  • Taking incoming phone calls
  • Updating website content
  • Data entry
  • Calendar management
  • Document creation and word processing
  • Creating reports and presentations
  • Social media content creation and management
  • Blog writing
  • Booking travel and accommodation

What a virtual assistant can do for your business depends on your individual business requirements, and their skills and abilities.

Discover what else you could outsource by downloading this list of 100+ tasks you could outsource to a virtual assistant.

How much does it cost to hire a virtual assistant?

The cost to hire a virtual assistant depends on a number of key factors. When looking to hire a virtual assistant, the cost can be impacted by:

  • Level/years of experience
  • Skills and knowledge across a range of tasks
  • Level of direct client contact
  • Offshore (overseas) or locally based
  • Sourced through an agency, direct, or crowdsourcing platform

Once you have considered the above factors, you can more accurately forecast the cost to hire a virtual assistant. For local Australian-based virtual assistants, the cost can vary anywhere from $30-65/hr. For offshore or overseas virtual assistants, the cost can start from $10/hr. Of course, it is important to keep in mind that if you aren’t hiring the virtual assistant as an employee, then these casual contracting rates mean that there are no further charges for superannuation, sick leave etc. However, it is important to discuss this with your accountant or human resources advisor, to ensure that you meet all the national requirements for employee vs contractor.

How do I hire my first virtual assistant?

When looking to hire your first virtual assistant, there are a number of steps you should take.

  1. Create a job description for the virtual assistant position.
  2. Decide whether you are going to hire directly, through a crowdsourcing site such as, upwork,, or use an agency that specialises in matching you with the perfect virtual assistant for your business.
  3. Create a job advertisement if hiring directly
  4. Shortlist and test the applicants before you interview
  5. Interview the shortlisted applicants (in-person or via Skype/Zoom)
  6. Provide a contract for the successful applicant

Should I hire an Australian or offshore virtual assistant?

Should I hire an Australian or offshore virtual assistant is a very commonly asked question by many business owners. Outsourcing tasks in your business to a virtual assistant has the potential to not only free up your time for more strategic planning, but it can also make you more money. If your charge out rate is higher than the cost of hiring a virtual assistant, then you can save your business money. So if your own charge out rate for work is higher than the lower cost of an offshore virtual assistant, or the higher cost of an Australian virtual assistant, then you have the potential to save money. Other considerations include the experience of the virtual assistant, their English skills (and how important their English fluency is for the tasks you require assistance with) and the amount of direct client contact.

Hiring a virtual assistant for your business

Hiring a virtual assistant has the potential to grow your business, increase your profit and save you time. If you need help to hire a virtual assistant for your business, then reach out to our team who can help you to find the perfect virtual assistant fairy to turn your chaos into organisation.

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