If you’re like most entrepreneurs, you have to play a small role in every part of your business, from recruiting to sales to keep your business on track. This can be extremely time consuming and leave you with little energy left to focus on long-term strategy.
While you may not be able to stop wearing so many hats, you can achieve more by being selective about the tasks you do.
Every business activity can be divided into two types of workflows:
- Strategic, highly subjective decisions, and deliverables
- Process-oriented workflows that help ensure those strategic activities are executed
To grow your business, you need to focus all of your effort on the strategic activities and delegate the rest.
1) Sales Support
A study from InsideSales found that salespeople only spend 35% of their time actually selling. They spend the remainder of their time on tedious admin tasks that don’t directly drive revenue.
To close more deals, offload all of the repetitive parts of your sales workflow to a virtual assistant. This includes:
- Prospect research
- Qualifying leads
- Reaching out to leads
- Scheduling sales calls
- Updating your CRM
- Managing your lead follow-up cadence
And any other repetitive steps in your sales cycle. Leveraging a virtual assistant will free up your time to focus on building stronger prospect relationships and other revenue-building activities.
2) Project Coordination
As any manager knows, successfully executing projects requires lots of coordination. To stay on track, you need to frequently update your systems, keep detailed notes, and follow-up with individual deliverables. If you’re not careful, focusing on day-to-day project coordination can make you lose sight of the project’s long-term goals.
A virtual assistant can help you focus on the strategic parts of your projects by tackling tedious tasks, including:
- Scheduling project meetings
- Taking meeting notes
- Following up with people regarding their action items
- Updating your systems as milestones are completed
- Entering data
- Coordinating vendors
Plus, other steps required to keep your projects on track. This frees up your time to focus on strategic activities, including helping your team solve significant challenges, evaluating if deliverables are meeting expectations, and deciding how to pivot, if necessary.
In today’s tight labor market, it’s more difficult than ever to find candidates who fit your company’s needs. Leveraging a virtual assistant can give you an edge by freeing up your time to focus on building strong candidate relationships and crafting compelling messages about your opportunities.
Here are some recruiting workflow steps that a virtual assistant can do:
- Finding candidates on LinkedIn who fit the job criteria
- Sending outreach emails
- Adding resumes into your applicant tracking system
- Scheduling initial phone calls
- Following up with candidates
- Logging all updates in your applicant tracking system
- Keep applicants updated on the status of their applications
Once a candidate has accepted an offer, your assistant can start helping with your onboarding process.
4) Onboarding New Employees and Clients
Having a smooth onboarding process for new clients and employees is essential to give them a warm welcome into your organization. If you have lean HR and/or client success teams, onboarding can be a significant time burden.
A virtual assistant can help by handling the objective steps of your onboarding process, including:
- Helping prepare onboarding paperwork and setting it up in DocuSign
- Scheduling onboarding meetings
- Giving IT a list of tools that need to be set up
- Adding/updating client and employee information in your systems
- Following up with all parties regarding required documents and other action items
Plus, any other logistical steps in your onboarding process. Offloading these kinds of workflow steps enables you to spend more time building a meaningful relationship with the new people in your organization.
5) Invoicing and Expenses
Keeping track of invoices and expenses is one of the most tedious tasks that pull entrepreneurs away from their core responsibilities. To save time, you can offload a variety of activities, including:
- Helping set up and send invoices
- Following up with outstanding invoices
- Filing expense reports
- Basic bookkeeping
Keep in mind that virtual assistants are not certified accountants. They can save you time by doing data entry, document formatting, and some verification tasks, but you shouldn’t rely on them for all of your bookkeeping needs.
These are just examples of the types of projects a VA can help with. If you’d like support with an activity that’s not listed here, schedule a free consultation to explore if a VA is a good fit.
About the Author: Emily formerly led Prialto's content production and distribution team with a special passion for helping people realize success. Her work and collaborations have appeared in Entrepreneur, Inc. and the Observer among others.