STAY FOCUSED ON WHAT YOU DO BEST. LET OFFICE ANGELS® HANDLE THE REST!
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You’re busier than ever. Clients are coming back for more and referring others. Business is booming but it’s beginning to take its toll on your stress level. You’re beginning to feel overwhelmed. Essential “back office” business tasks are being neglected. Are you filling your pipeline? Are your books current? Are you taking time to relax and have some fun? You’ve been doing it all, but now it’s time to delegate.
Thanks to a paradigm shift on the workforce over the past decade, small business owners now have excellent options for covering essential tasks without hiring an employee and incurring the many employment costs and taxes. Seasoned professionals with backgrounds in accounting, advertising, sales, customer service, management, IT and just about every other area you need to cover, are working as independent contractors. They work with little supervision or time commitment by you. Many are choosing a less-than-full-time career path in order to balance work with family or other interests. And you don’t even need to provide workspace because most of them work virtually from their home offices.
But how do you decide what to delegate and how do you find the right contractor? Here’s a winning game plan:
Understand Your Needs and Work Style
Definitely keep for yourself tasks and activities that only you can do and delegate the rest. Analyze how much time you are spending on tasks such as bookkeeping, marketing support, sales support, special projects, and research. These are the types of tasks that are the easiest to cover with by a virtual professional business contractor.
Develop a Job Description
Determine the skill set necessary to accomplish the task—one person may not be able to do it all. Then develop a job description. Keep in mind, however, that the professional you engage will likely be able to suggest ways to improve your approach to a task, given his/her specialized experience doing that specific kind of work, so be flexible and open to suggestions.
Recruit and Engage
Either work with a staffing agency or do the recruiting yourself. Either way, conduct rigorous interviews. Good “chemistry” is essential. Clearly communicate your expectations, deadlines, and standards. Ask about the prospect’s backup plan (when out sick/vacation/emergencies/technology issues). Discuss pricing/budget—by the hour, by the project, on retainer. For on-going work, discuss working style and how best to communicate—schedule time for updates/progress reports. Then meticulously conduct reference and background checks.
Execute a Letter of Agreement/Contract
The contract should include all terms and conditions. It should include the job description; specify performance evaluation procedures and timeframes; cap the number of hours/month or set a fixed fee; and establish payment procedures. It may also include a Confidentiality Agreement.
Manage the Virtual Team Member
Based on the job description, develop a detailed, prioritized work plan outlining the scope of work.
You can do the recruiting, screening, and engagement directly yourself, or you can use a staffing agency—a “matchmaker”— who can help identify just the right individual and ease your transition from “do it all yourself” to “make sure it all gets done.”
If you go through Office Angels, we’ll make sure you have a match made in heaven!