How to Hire a Virtual Assistant in the Philippines

Jul 6, 2022
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How to Hire a Virtual Assistant in the Philippines

Learning how to hire a virtual assistant in the Philippines can unlock a lot of opportunities for your business’s growth. While outsourcing to virtual assistants is already a smart move, you can further that advantage by choosing to hire from a place where labor is comparatively inexpensive.

The Philippines is also known for its compatibility with American businesses. English has been used as a medium of instruction for decades, and their educational system was also adapted from the US.

With a competitive proficiency in the English language, lower labor cost, and a world-renowned reputation for outsourced services, learning how to hire a virtual assistant (VA) in the Philippines is a worthwhile investment for the future of your business.

Continue reading to discover the steps involved in hiring a VA from the Philippines.

Preparing to Hire a Virtual Assistant in the Philippines

Before hiring any virtual assistant, you’ll need to prepare a few things. These should help find the right person your business needs, and develop them into the best virtual assistant for your business.

1. List Your Needs

Listing your needs involves identifying the area of your business that needs the most help immediately. This will be your virtual assistant’s main area of expertise.

With the tasks associated with that aspect of your business, list tasks you’d like to outsource to a virtual assistant. Starting out with the tasks you normally do is a great way to make sure they will be taken care of once you hire a VA.

From your list of needs and tasks, create a schedule for your VA. It’s in this part of the step where you find out if you need to hire a full-time or part-time VA.

2. Determine Your Budget

Next, determine how much you’re willing to spend on hiring and employing a virtual assistant. This involves calculating salary, hiring costs, and other benefits you’re willing to offer your VA.

VA’s may work on hourly wages or project-based fees so consider having calculations for those, too.

Your budgeting should also have room for training costs, app subscriptions, and other purchases you may need once you hire a VA. This avoids getting surprised with low returns when these costs are factored in at a later time.

3. Prepare the List of Tools You’ll Need

As you’ve already identified the tasks you want to delegate to your virtual assistant, you should then list down the tools and apps they’ll need to accomplish their tasks.

You may need a time-tracking tool like Timedly to encourage accountability. This is common practice when working with virtual assistants.

Cloud storage, password managers, and project management platforms are also highly recommended in your choice to work with a remote assistant. These help you and your VA work in an organized and secure manner, especially when handling sensitive information.

Social media virtual assistants will also need creative tools like Adobe Creative Cloud or Canva, and schedulers like Later or Hootsuite. Try to find apps with integrations and analytics to lay the foundation for data-driven strategies.

4. Choose the Right Type of Virtual Assistant

Once you’ve identified the scope of your virtual assistant’s work, it’s time to decide on the type of virtual assistant you’re going to hire. Here are three main types of virtual assistants you can outsource your tasks to.

GVA

A general virtual assistant (GVA) usually performs administrative tasks, but they can also do some of your marketing tasks, CRM management, and data entry tasks.

Hiring a GVA is a smart move if your business needs someone to take over the multiple small tasks that need to be done every day.

ISA

Also known as a prospecting virtual assistant, an inside sales associate (ISA) focuses on helping you achieve your sales goals by reaching out to your customer base, and helping you generate and convert leads.

ISAs are great when you have a growing database that needs to be nurtured or contacted. Especially if you need help with cold calling and setting appointments, a prospecting virtual assistant should be your next hire.

EVA

Need help managing and executing projects? Executive virtual assistants (EVA) are specialists who can assist you in your day-to-day tasks, and also manage teams and projects.

If you’re looking for a virtual assistant who can perform managerial tasks and get started on your backlogged projects, an EVA is the right choice for you.

5. Build Out Task Checklists

The next step in preparing how to hire a virtual assistant in the Philippines is building checklists of tasks for your virtual assistant. These will be instrumental in setting expectations during the hiring process, and as they begin working in your team.

Daily

Your VA’s daily task checklist should include clear instructions on how to get each task done. This checklist should serve as a reference for what they need to do and the necessary steps needed to finish the task.

Make sure to include links to folders, templates, and other resources so they can easily navigate the completion of a task. You may also break daily tasks down by the hour to remind them of a task’s priority level or urgency.

This can also include tips on the best times to post for social media virtual assistants, or the best times to call prospects for ISAs.

Weekly

You should also list down weekly tasks thoroughly for your virtual assistant. This will let you set the tone on how they should work on tasks that are due throughout the week.

This can include the best days to update reports, send out emails and texts, publish blogs, and submit documents to third-party service providers. You can break down your VA’s weekly tasks into smaller tasks in their weekly schedules.

6. Create a Training Program

As you’ve identified the tasks and responsibilities you want to delegate to a virtual assistant, you should already have a clear idea of the skills you’re looking for in a VA.

One important preparation step is to design a training program that can help your future VA adapt to how you want them to do their job.

Your marketing virtual assistant may need supplemental training on copywriting and graphic design using your brand kit. ISAs will also probably need training on how to reach out to prospects using your scripts.

Designing a training program for your VA means you’re helping them build on their existing skills to be the best for your company. Keep that in mind as you look for training courses and material around the internet.

Direct Hiring Process

Now that you know how to prepare for hiring a VA, here are the steps on how to hire a virtual assistant in the Philippines directly.

1. Create a Job Description

Using the checklists you’ve prepared, create a job description that outlines the role you’re looking to fill.

This should include a brief description of the nature of the job vacancy you’re advertising and the kind of virtual assistant you’re looking for.

Include qualifications, experience, and other requirements you need, like familiarity with certain tools and specific previous experiences. This should help virtual assistants determine if they’re a good fit for the role or not.

2. Sign Up to Job Sites

Next, you’re going to need a place to post your job ad so applicants can find it. Sign up to job sites like LinkedIn, Indeed, Upwork, and Fiver to start looking for virtual assistants.

Onlinejobs.ph is also a good option when you’re looking to hire a freelance virtual assistant from the Philippines. Create an account on these sites to get started with your search.

3. Post Your Job Ad

Start looking for your virtual assistant by advertising your vacancy on job sites. Make sure to use the right words in your job description so the right people can find them faster.

4. Review Applications

As you start receiving applications for your job ad, your next task is to review those resumes. This includes reading cover letters and checking for relevant experiences and qualifications.

Create a shortlist of the best candidates you find so the next steps don’t have to take too much of your time.

5. Check for Client Reviews

Continue screening your top candidates by checking for reviews from previous clients, if they’ve had any. Ask for previous employer reviews if that’s what they have instead.

This should give you insight into what it is like to work with them without spending too much time getting to know them during the screening process.

6. Inspect Work Samples

Ask for work samples so you can gain some insight into the quality of work that they can produce for you. This is especially important if you’re looking for a virtual assistant with previous experience in leading projects.

You can also do this if you’re hiring a creative virtual assistant for graphic design, video editing, or other marketing and content creation roles.

7. Conduct Interviews

Once you’ve singled out the best candidates, it’s time to start conducting interviews. Make sure to prepare unique questions based on what you’ve learned from screening their applications. Doing so will help you get to know them better, and determine the one you want to work with.

8. Negotiate Salary

Another step you shouldn’t miss is negotiating your virtual assistant’s salary. Make sure to come up with an offer that justifies the value they need to contribute to your business. It’s still important, however, to stick to your budget when finding a virtual assistant.

9. Discuss Their Business Continuity Plan (BCP)

An important element of remote working is a business continuity plan. This is your candidate’s process in case of natural disasters or cyber-attacks.

Discuss with your applicant what they have prepared for such situations so you can determine if they are a reliable option for outsourcing your tasks.

10. Ask for References

Don’t forget to also ask your virtual assistant candidate if they have any references who can attest to their character and expertise. Doing so can help you be more sure of which candidate to hire, knowing there are people who can vouch for their work ethic.

11. Conduct Background Checks

After asking for character references, you should proceed to conduct a deeper background check on your candidate’s educational background, criminal history, professional qualifications, and the like.

You can do this by requesting that they present some form of documentation that they have no history of bringing trouble into the workplace. In the Philippines, this can come in the form of clearance from the National Bureau of Investigation.

12. Agree on a Payment System

Once you’ve confirmed you’re willing to hire a certain candidate, you should agree on a payment system. Remember to include an agreement on exchange and transfer fees when talking about payment systems and schedules with your virtual assistants.

While Paypal is a popular option for international transactions, you should also consult with your virtual assistant about their preferred or recommended payment channel.

13. Prepare Your Form W-8BEN

When outsourcing to independent contractors overseas, you should have their form W-8BEN on file. This protects you from being taxed for having an overseas worker on your payroll, in case of an audit.

Make sure to prepare this file and have it submitted by your virtual assistant before their first instance of payment.

14. Onboard and Train Your Virtual Assistant

Finally, it’s time to onboard your virtual assistant, let them meet the rest of the team, and have them set up their virtual office with all the tools they need. This is followed by beginning the training process you created for them.

How to Hire a freelance Virtual Assistant in the Philippines directly

Hiring a Virtual Assistant from an Agency like Virtudesk

If you don’t have the time or bandwidth to hire a virtual assistant yourself, there’s an alternative to the DIY route. Here’s how to hire a virtual assistant in the Philippines through Virtudesk.

Step 1: Determine What Tasks to Outsource

The first step to hiring a virtual assistant from an agency is to have a clear understanding of the tasks you want to outsource.

By preparing the checklists mentioned above, and doing some research, you should be able to come up with a list of the tasks you need to outsource to a virtual assistant.

Step 2: Get on a Discovery Call

After signing up on this page, a consultant will get in touch with you for a discovery session. During this call, your needs will be assessed based on the nature of your business, the tasks you wish to outsource, and other findings based on a series of questions.

It’s during this session that a consultant will help you build on an outsourcing plan, starting with your first virtual assistant hire.

Step 3: Interview the Top Candidates

After the discovery call, you will receive a shortlist of the candidates most compatible with your needs. This is based on their skill set, personality assessment, and the qualifications you need from a virtual assistant.

An interview session with them will be conducted so you can proceed to decide on the candidate you want to hire.

These candidates have already been thoroughly vetted by the Virtudesk talent acquisition team. That includes background checks, skills assessments, and other steps that make up a meticulous acquisition process.

Step 4: Onboard Your Virtual Assistant

Once you’ve decided on a candidate, it’s time to hop on a call with them again to officially welcome them to your team. 

You’ll also meet their coach, who will help you along the way in discovering the best ways to manage and work with your virtual assistant.

How to Hire a Virtual Assistant in the Philippines through virtudesk

Two Ways to Hire a Virtual Assistant in the Philippines

As a summary of what you’ve learned so far, here are the two ways to hire VAs in the Philippines to help you decide which one you prefer to take.

hiring filipino VAs freelance vs agency

Sample Schedule of Your Virtual Assistant (EVA)

Thinking of hiring an executive virtual assistant first? Here’s what their schedule can look like with their daily and weekly tasks.

sample schedule of executive virtual assistant USA

Finding Virtual Assistants in the Philippines

Knowing the steps on how to hire a virtual assistant in the Philippines means you’re dedicated to finding the best candidate who can help you scale your business.

While it’s valuable to have a meticulous screening process with every hire, your time as an entrepreneur is also valuable. Hiring through an agency with Virtudesk helps you get a win-win situation by cutting down the time it takes to find a qualified professional by conducting the vetting process for you.

Not only that, but you also receive continuous support from a coach in managing your virtual assistant. There are also systems in place to help you with data security and payroll management.

Hiring a virtual assistant in the Philippines through an agency doesn’t only mean you get to delegate and outsource your daily and weekly tasks. With Virtudesk, you also have an entire team helping you with the management of your virtual assistant’s employment.

Beyond the cost savings and expanded productivity, there’s also a Leverage community powered by Virtudesk, that you can join to continue expanding your knowledge as an entrepreneur.

If you’d like to start outsourcing your tasks to virtual assistants in the Philippines from Virtudesk, get started by filling out this form, and one of our Consultants will get in touch with you.

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