In this article based on a presentation given by Maria Dorian at the 2019 Maid Summit, you will learn what exactly a virtual assistant is, how one can help you grow your cleaning business and what you need to look for to find the perfect VA for your Maid Service.
Take a look at the full replays of talks from Maria and over 40 other cleaning industry experts at MaidSummit.com
About the Presenter
Maria Dorian is the founder and head of support at ZenMaid, a scheduling software for Maid Services as well as TaskAway VA, a virtual assistant service.
Prior to her current position, Maria ran a successful Maid Service out of Austin, Texas for 14 years.
She sold her cleaning company, which had a $750K yearly revenue and moved to Spain with her family a few years ago and is now solely a remote worker.
With all of this experience and knowledge that Maria has collected from her time in both the cleaning filed as well as in virtual assistance, we thought she would be the perfect person to learn from.
In this article, you will learn:
+ what a virtual assistant is
+ what tasks you can assign your virtual assistant
+ how to know if you are ready to hire a virtual assistant
+ how much a VA costs to hire
What is a virtual assistant?
A virtual assistant is a remote assistant who provides technical and administrative support services. They could be both male and female and located anywhere in the world.
What tasks can a VA do in your cleaning business?
A virtual assistant is your support. Think of a VA as your right hand helper. Whatever you need help with, you’ll be able to find a VA to do it (perhaps with a little training).
Some tasks a virtual assistant can take on in your cleaning business:
- handle incoming calls
- customer service (including the complaint calls)
- email invoices and payments
- rescheduling requests
- quote callbacks
- client follow-ups
- social media
- market research
- helping the cleaning team (owner not home, vacuum stops working)
- system implementation
Think of a VA for your Maid Service as someone who can take all those small tasks that you have been doing single day that take a lot of your time. Time that could be spent on high-level marketing, strategy or with your family!
Are you ready to hire a virtual assistant?
There are some key factors to consider in order to decide if your cleaning business is ready to hire a virtual assistant.
Some things to think about:
What is your end goal for your Maid Service business? Do you envision yourself eventually being an absentee business owner? Do you want a business that can run without you?
How much time do you currently spend in your business and what you are spending your time on? Are you spending the majority of your time doing low-level tasks such as answering phones, sending quotes, following up with clients? Is a large part of your time spent working in your Maid Service rather than on your business?
Does your current office staff have too much on their plates? You might already have an office manager and other admin staff. Perhaps you are finding that they are stretched a bit thin with their tasks because they are trying to do too much but hiring another in-office admin staff doesn’t seem like the right solution.
Is there tasks or projects that you either don’t like doing or just don’t know how to do? Like set up that email drip sequence? Or edits on your website? Maybe the customer follow-up calls? Do you know that your time could be better spent doing other things for your Maid Service rather than learning the ins and outs of WordPress?
If you answered yes to any of these, it’s probably time for you to consider hiring a virtual assistant for your cleaning business. A VA can free up your time and mental energy to focus on the things that not only you enjoy but will help your cleaning business grow.
How much does a virtual assistant cost?
There are, of course, different options for what a virtual assistant will cost, depending on what you want.
A freelancer will typically charge by the hour, often charging upfront for a specific number of hours they will allocate to your cleaning business.
Typically a contract is needed in order to bring on a freelancer, which you will both agree on prior to the start.
The agency route can vary greatly depending on the agency. Some may have a policy of paying up front while others will bill at the end of the month.
When shopping around for an agency, these are all questions to ask before signing on or committing to a contract.
Why you should choose an agency VA to grow your Maid Service
Anyone could get any person to be in an assistant role virtually, but do you just want any VA when you are trying to get to the next level?
This is why it is a good idea to go with an agency rather than comb through individual options yourself.
An agency will:
- Have VAs with specific knowledge of Maid Service businesses
- Provide support to your VA
- Relieve you of the extra management role you would have to take on with an independent freelancer virtual assistant
- Be sure that your VA will be productive and busy
- Ensure consistent, quality assistance from the VA
- Hold your VA accountable so that you don’t have to be the bad guy
Plus, there is no minimum number of tasks that you need to assign. If you need something done only once, that is perfectly ok with an agency VA.
You can pretty much call one place and you are finished with your legwork.
Also, with an agency, they want to protect your brand as well as their own reputation, so they will be invested in making sure the VA you hire is the best fit for your cleaning business.
If the VA is not working out with your Maid Service, the agency will likely notice before you do and will be able to replace the assistant with a better suited one.
The agency takes on the training, management and quality control of the virtual assistants.
So not only will a VA help to relieve you of time consuming day-to-day tasks, the agency will also take on the management of the assistant, meaning even less for you to have to worry about.
Now, doesn’t that make you feel a little more relaxed already?
So, should you hire a virtual assistant for your Maid Service?
As you’ve learned by now, a virtual assistant can be beneficial to you as a cleaning business owner in many ways.
A VA can provide extra support to you as CEO as well as to your team. This can mean taking on tasks that your office staff no longer have the time for and freeing you from low-level day-to-day tasks.
This means that your team’s time can now be focused on cleaning jobs, customer service and staff support.
Your time and energy can now be spend on high-level strategy, marketing, and management support that will help your Maid Service expand. Better yet, it will likely even provide you more personal time away from the office now that you aren’t spending your hours answering phones or figuring out WordPress.
A virtual assistant can be your answer to those projects you keep putting off, like updating your website or setting up your email sequences.
You need to consider a few factors when deciding if it’s the right time for you to hire a VA. These include: the size of your cleaning business, your end goals as a maid service owner, what you are currently spending your time on and the tasks and projects that your current team cannot handle.
There are affordable options for VA’s to suit everyone’s budget, depending on how many hours a month you outsource. It’s advisable to spend some time asking around to agencies and freelance virtual assistants to get an idea of their invoicing practices and contract commitments.