said 1 year, 4 months ago:
“Julie Hood: I have been a VA since 2005 and then niched my services to Inbound Marketing (with training and certifications) but I still do general administrative work as well.
One of the easiest ways to find the right VA, is to post an RFP (Request for Proposal) on one of the VA Organization sites, such as VANA, IVAA or CVAC (Canadian only VA`s who can service international clients as the other organizations do).
On the RFP you can clarify exactly what you need and your preferences and expectations. Then you just sit back and wait for the replies. Among those replies, you can choose a couple that come closest to the type of experience you require. If you are looking for “certifications of their training“ stipulate that. VA Classroom also takes RFP`s and provides the best certification programs out there (in my opinion) because I took several of their courses to enhance my skills. And understandably, other VA`s oftentimes want VA Classroom graduates they can subcontract to because they know the value of that education.
If you have a budget you have to stick to, clarify that as well. And if you want references.
Then the next step is to speak with the VA`s you feel would be the best fit for you. Most VA`s offer a free consult call specifically to clarify your needs and if they have the skillset to help you.
Be prepared with your questions on those consult calls. How much you can expect to pay – what is covered and what extrra charges may come into play. Do they offer packages, per hour rates or retainer agreements and what those entail.
Rates vary greatly. Those with more specialized skills, certifications and many years of experience tend to charge higher rates. Why – because they `know their stuff`and can get things done more efficiently and save you in time charged.
Of particular note, VA`s are business owners too. They are not your employee – they “partner with you“ to get the job done – they have a vested interest in providing the service you need.