Last Updated on August 25, 2023 by The ZenMaid Team
How would you like to have a business that doesn’t require your undivided attention 24/7? What if your cleaning business could simply run itself, with only very occasional input from you?
Imagine being able to make it to all of your son’s baseball games. If you don’t have kids, imagine having the flexibility to head off to the beach just because you want to smell the surf.
Sounds like a pie in the sky dream, doesn’t it? Well, it doesn’t have to be. Hiring a virtual assistant for your maid service could be the solution to your “not enough time” woes.
Cleaning business and automation expert Chris Schwab gave a presentation at ZenMaid’s 2019 Maid Summit explaining how your goal as a business owner should be to replace yourself. This, Chris claims, is the only way you’ll be able to truly scale your business.
We’ve unpacked the key points from Chris’s talk in this post. In it, you’ll learn how to use a VA in your cleaning business and much more. Consider it a crash course on hiring a VA. Keep reading or keep working, it’s up to you!
What Can a Virtual Assistant (VA) Do for a Cleaning Company?
A VA is basically an out-of-office office manager. This is someone who works online only when you need them to, and there are so many benefits to having a VA.
One of the bonuses to having a VA is that there are none of the extra expenses that come from having an office manager.
No breaks, no getting distracted, no water cooler banter, you don’t have to worry about any of these little time-sucks that come with an in-house employee.
Plus, a VA can be super helpful with the organization to your home cleaning company.
They can take care of things like:
- Booking cleaning clients
- Making follow-up phone calls
- Managing your cleaners and other staff (if you have them)
- Reaching out to your cleaning business leads and closing them
- Organizing your cleaner and client schedules
- Answering emails
- And so much more!
Basically, a VA can take a lot off your plate, including the stuff you really don’t like to do. You know, the things you procrastinate about the most.
In fact, it is actually recommended to pass off the tasks you hate the most as soon as possible to free your mind for more creative aspects of your home cleaning business.
Imagine a world where you go to work and all of the things you avoid doing have already been completed. Doesn’t that just make your day to day seem more enjoyable already?
Of course it does.
However, once that you know your cleaning company needs a VA, there are still a few factors to consider before hiring one.
Which Is Better: An Independent VA or an Agency VA?
As with anything, there are pros and cons to each.
An independent VA will usually charge cheaper rates, and you also have more control over how they manage your company’s responsibilities.
However, independent VAs are typically untrained and there is no quality control, so you will have to weed out the bad ones on your own.
Another issue is that there will be no one to replace your VA should something occur where you cannot reach them or they are sick. At this point, you will have to do everything yourself.
If you decide to go with an agency VA, the rates might be higher, but the benefits are definitely worth the money.
Before an agency-represented VA begins, they will be trained to the specific needs of your cleaning business. If your usual VA is out for any reason, the provider will then be responsible to issue a replacement to take their place.
In addition to these pros, hiring an agency VA generally offers more of a guaranteed outcome, whereas an independent VA does not. They will also have the agency on top of them to do better, rather than you having to stress about any re-training.
However, whichever one you choose, hiring a VA should be able to make your life easier in a variety of ways.
Should I Hire an International VA or a Local VA?
In short, a local VA is the way to go, but let us explain why.
If you are running a US-based residential cleaning business, a local native English speaker is best.
This isn’t to say you cannot hire a great overseas VA, but in reality most cleaning clients want to communicate with someone who sounds local and understands their culture.
It just eliminates a lot of miscommunications that may occur from having an international VA.
You might be able to get a quality international VA who works hard and efficiently, but they could be costing you in unexpected ways.
A common issue is the risk of poor-quality phone systems. We all know how aggravating it can be to be on the phone, let alone if the connection is bad.
Furthermore, there is no way to connect an international VA to your phone system. This can cause missed calls and a loss in cleaning clients.
Internet connection or software can also cause problems with communication. If the international VA has a poor connection or malfunctioning software, there is no way you can be sure tasks will be completed in a timely manner.
On top of this, international VAs have the common habit of disappearing on you. This happens a lot due to the common reason for hiring them: the low wages.
Say someone offers your international VA a job $6 and you are only giving them $3, they will likely leave without notice. Even though this is only a little bit of a difference, there is nothing tying them to you or your home cleaning business.
If you happen to have a VA drop out on you without notice, this can be detrimental to your business. You could even go weeks without realizing no one is managing your cleaning business.
Any VA is better than none, but if you want to work toward a self-running home cleaning businesses, hire a local VA. To find out more about the art of hiring and training VAs, check out these articles:
Find Out More About Chris Schwab
After implementing the strategies outlined in his talk, Chris was able to relax his hold on his business and turn his attention to creating Inova Local, a VA company aimed at helping busy cleaning business owners just like you.
Make sure you watch until the end of Chris’ talk – there’s a great deal on a resource to guide you on this process.
This talk first aired at the 2019 Maid Service Success Summit.
The Maid Summit is an annual online event that brings together the most successful leaders in the cleaning industry, like Debbie Sardone, Angela Brown, Courtney Wisely, Amy Caris, Chris Schwab and more. Get free access to masterclasses and workshops that will help you to grow, scale and automate your cleaning business so you can get more leads and create more profit. Make sure you’re on our email list to find out how to get free tickets to the next event.