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Enlist a Qualified Remote Assistant: Maximize Your Work Productivity

The main focus of an executive leadership team is to create value while driving the success of the business. The role of an assistant team is to boost the productivity and efficiency of the executives they support.  

Help with administrative tasks such as scheduling meetings, managing travel arrangements, answering phone calls, responding to emails, and handling clerical tasks supports and empowers effective leadership. Providing an administrative staff with driven objectives, encouragement, and goal-oriented duties promotes involvement and motivation, creating partnerships that quickly become assets to an organization. 

This partnership of task completion and overall business support can be successfully accomplished through utilization of a remote assistance work force model. 

A Rising Trend

In a statistical blog posted by Zippia, it is predicted that by 2025, America will be employing a remote workforce comprised of 36.2 million people. This is a 417% increase from remote workforce levels prior to the Covid-19 pandemic. Other statistics reported include:

  • 16% of American-based companies are fully remote
  • 59% of workers report a preference for choosing an employer that allows for remote work  
  • Managers are reporting less turnover, less absenteeism, and more loyalty within the remote workforce 
  • Employees are willing to take a pay cut in order to work from home  

Within the realm of virtual support, remote-based models can be tailored for different levels of support based on the complexity and volume of task requests. Functions originally requiring a physical presence in the office have been replaced with Teams Meetings, VPN capabilities, chat forums, and delivery services who can provide coffee and donuts to a meeting at a moment’s notice. Dedicated in-house assistants are able to greet office visitors, however the virtual assistant becomes a part of the company in the same way, and can easily be a professional, helpful, and familiar presence from afar.

Beyond the tasks at hand, additional benefits of enlisting a virtual support staff also exist. The remote model allows for flexibility by offering coverage among various time zones and supporting people in multiple locations. Utilizing a higher ratio of executives per assistant, and with increased availability, adds to productivity while conserving costs. In addition, shifting headcount from payroll to non-payroll resources helps to save on bottom line dollars. 

Finding the Best Virtual Fit

The increasing demand for high-quality talent combined with the rising trend of remote staffing can leave an organization feeling vulnerable or uncertain. Finding and choosing the best virtual executive assistant team to fulfill your business responsibilities while respecting your company culture can be challenging. It is important to select candidates who have the desired skill set, appropriate work experience, motivation, and discipline to function within a remote environment. 

Despite these challenges, employment of a remote workforce is proving capable of providing executive level management with the flexible support they need to be successful in their workdays. 

The duties of an executive assistant, remote or in-person, are to provide senior leaders with the highest level of support available. What exactly does good help look like? What goes into the selection process in order to equip your company with top-notch traits and talents? How are confidentiality and dependability achieved? Virtual assistants offer a wide array of skillsets that continue to expand, and with partners in outsourcing, businesses like yours are finding more than one right answer to these questions.  

Senior leaders expect an executive assistant who is experienced, professional, communicative, organized, responsive, thorough, disciplined, and self-directed. In order to attract this level of talent, there are a few guidelines to follow: 

  1. Clearly state your expectations. Virtual assistants thrive on understanding the executive's needs and the company's directives, which allows them to anticipate support requirements, build rapport and trust, and engage in company culture. Properly setting expectations with a good job description will both eliminate on-the-job surprises and signal to potential candidates that you are a forthcoming and trustworthy employer.
  1. Advertise. Consider placing your job ad in a few different locations to get the attention of good candidates. Online job boards like Indeed and Glassdoor offer good visibility and credibility. Social media platforms such as LinkedIn and Facebook can also be effective ways to reach a larger audience.
  1. Encourage employee referrals. Sometimes your current employees are a great untapped resource for finding new talent. They likely have a good sense of your company culture and may know someone who would fit in well and has the desired qualifications. Consider offering a referral incentive to encourage your employees to think about their connections. 

Even when you put forth your best efforts, the hiring process can be challenging and expensive. Getting the best return on investment requires finding the personality, professional attributes, and support model that are well-suited for your company.  

Hiring is Streamlined Through Partnership 

As with other in-house roles,  recruiting for executive assistants has many common challenges:  

  • Attracting the right applicants in a wide talent pool
  • Filtering and reviewing resumes
  • Engaging with candidates
  • Recruiting fairly and objectively for an inclusive workplace  
  • Losing applicants to competition  
  • Hiring delays  
  • The cost of background checks 
  • Recruiting efficiently with effective internal communications
  • Avoiding bad hires  

It is estimated that the cost to find, interview, hire, and onboard the role of executive assistant is over $4000. The undertaking can be tedious and with varying degrees of success. 

Hiring processes drain a company of its time and resources. Enlisting a partner that provides remote executive assistant services is available. Firms like Cayuse have talented, long-tenured professionals who have become trusted employees, earning high client satisfaction year after year. Tenured employees bring a history of performance management and ongoing professional development. A matching process connects executives with assistants to pair work requirements with personalities that complement the partnership. 

In addition, tailored models for low-touch and high-touch support requirements provide your company with assistance that matches your needs – even when those needs change. Monitored service levels can scale easily and on-demand.  

Equipment is important as well and must guarantee both ease of use and reliability in functionality and confidentiality. Hiring executive assistants through a trusted assistant agency provides assurance that you are connected with reliable and reputable employees and peripherals.  

In addition, engaging in a partnership offers you direct feedback on process metrics. Through key performance indicators, partners like Cayuse keep you informed of how your support model is performing, along with suggestions for and implementation of improvements as appropriate. 

Fitting in with the overall culture of a company helps to foster solid and happy working relationships. The Cayuse culture believes in diversity and as a certified diversity supplier, a stated core value of ours is to provide living-wage jobs for Native Americans and the rural and local communities. In return, our clients receive world-class services at competitive prices.  

Case In Point  

In the realm of remote, virtual assistants, it is vital to match business need with the appropriate support team. Cayuse is a premier provider of business outsourcing through partnerships and common goals of growing our companies and growing our people. 

Read our Case Study to learn more about how our talent and abilities within the Virtual Executive Assistant arena have helped executives and companies manage daily tasks while accomplishing company goals.  

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Editor's note: This post was originally published in November, 2021 and has been updated for freshness, accuracy, and comprehensiveness.

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