The Use of KPIs Within the Virtual Executive Assistant Model
Tracking key performance indicators (KPIs) is a critical aspect of measuring business performance and efficiency. Through monitoring sales figures, customer satisfaction, and employee productivity, KPIs provide valuable insight into the success of a company and help identify areas that may need improvement.
By establishing clear and measurable goals, and regularly monitoring progress towards those goals, businesses can make data-driven decisions that lead to increased growth and profitability.
Using KPIs is particularly important when outsourcing tasks, such as hiring administrative support through a Virtual Executive Assistant (VEA) provider. Outsourcing an assistant can provide significant cost savings and access to a wider pool of talent, however it also brings added complexity to performance monitoring.
Working with the service provider to establish clear KPI directives for executive assistants at the beginning of their assignments can help set fair work expectations, eliminate confusion, and lay the foundation for a smooth professional relationship.
VEA service providers also rely on KPIs to help them provide the best possible service to clients. By tracking quality and performance from various perspectives, and using the information gathered in a beneficial way, partnerships are formed both between the provider and client, as well as the executive and VEA.
Commonly tracked KPIs include:
- Customer satisfaction
- Quality of work
- Operational and process metrics
- Employee Satisfaction
Keeping the Client Happy
Customer satisfaction is one of the most important KPIs for providers to track. Measuring this indicator can be thought of as a way of “taking vitals” on overall performance. Monitoring satisfaction is a measure toward good customer service and provides a baseline for where the other metrics might stand. Much like a patient’s elevated blood pressure can signal a potential underlying condition, diminished customer satisfaction could indicate the need to investigate potential issues related to quality of work or adherence to protocols.
By regularly monitoring customer satisfaction through surveys and open dialogue with clients, VEA providers can identify areas for improvement and make necessary adjustments before bigger issues arise.
Quality of work is another essential indicator used to gauge the on-the-job performance of a VEA. It can also be a tricky metric to work with due to its somewhat subjective nature. Clearly defining expectations of quality and how it will be measured and tracked at the outset of the executive-VEA relationship is key to getting ideal results.
Quality of work can be measured by monitoring verbal and written communication, and by observing the VEA’s level of adherence to established company guidelines, protocols, and procedures. Though some quality indicators may be intangible or difficult to track, identifying and using concrete standards as much as possible helps to maintain objectivity and provides a framework for discussing the more abstract aspects of an assistant’s job performance.
Depending on the nature of the business, the work of a VEA likely involves leveraging specific processes and tools. Because some tasks may require a higher or more specialized level of skill from an assistant, finding a VEA who is the right fit to handle the job is critical. Whether managing a CRM, assisting with document preparation, or carrying out other specialized tasks, each executive is bound to have a number of unique needs to be met by their assistant. Metrics can be developed in partnership with the service provider to measure success in these areas as well.
It is also necessary to continually monitor operational and process metrics specific to the assistant’s role on a regular basis. If the VEA isn’t meeting expectations in specialized areas, this might simply be a sign that another assistant with a different skill set would be a better fit.
Happy Assistant, Happy Life
The executive assistant’s personal job satisfaction is an often overlooked, however vitally important KPI to monitor. VEAs and other support staff carry out numerous job functions from day to day, many of which can easily go unnoticed by their supervisors.
An assistant’s role exists for the primary purpose of helping things run smoothly in the background, allowing executives to focus on their core duties. When the assistant feels appreciated for their work, appropriately challenged, and in-the-know of the overall expectations, they will have a higher level of job satisfaction. Checking in on a VEA’s employee satisfaction can:
- Alleviate job stress: When a VEA feels their concerns will be heard and addressed, they are less likely to feel anxiety about work-related issues.
- Lead to better work outputs: Employees who enjoy their jobs are apt to work harder and produce higher quality results.
- Lower turnover rates: Assistants with better job satisfaction will stay with their employers longer, reducing the need for costly new hires and training.
- Foster better working relationships: Employers who open the door to dialogue with their employees may enjoy getting to know them better, and even discover new ways to utilize their talents to benefit the organization.
Start Out on the Right Foot
Utilizing KPIs to evaluate performance is an excellent way to maintain a healthy executive-VEA relationship. Finding the right assistant is the other key to success. Enlisting a qualified partner like Cayuse can help you identify remote assistants whose unique skillsets complement your business needs, while also establishing an effective KPI system to appropriately monitor and report on performance.
When you have high caliber professionals on your team, a trustworthy staffing partner by your side, and sensible KPIs for continued improvement, you will be well on your way to achieving your business goals with greater ease and efficiency.