Here are some common questions people ask us when we are discussing how we might be able to work together. Hopefully they will give you a feel for the way we engage with our clients and what to expect.
What can you do?
A VA can do pretty much anything a PA can do and we can also cover areas like CRM management, recruitment admin and accounts admin such as invoicing and expenses. We have a team of associates and during an initial chat, we’ll talk about your business and your needs and how we can best provide you with the right service.
What’s it like working with Personally Virtual?
We only work with people that we believe we are the best fit for. If we have a conversation and we can see a more cost-effective way or appropriate approach for you, we will recommend it rather than just saying yes. We want to build great partnerships with clients and really enjoy who we work with and add value to their businesses.
Our clients enjoy working with us and that is important to us. We want to feel like a part of your business and we want your clients and contacts to think of us as one of your team and not Virtual Assistants who just do a few hours a month (even if that’s all we do). For that reason, we’ll use your email so that it looks we are part of your business rather than external, and any voicemails and out of office messages on our mobiles are very discreet – our company name isn’t mentioned.
How do we get started?
When we’ve determined we are right for each other, we’ll send you a set of terms and conditions and a booking form which is the bit that describes what we are doing specifically. If we need to process any of your data, we’ll also ask you to complete a form about that to cover the requirements of GDPR. Once that is signed and any agreed funds are in the right place, we’ll have an onboarding session.
If it’s a quick bit of work, this will just be Kathy or one of the team ensuring we know what is needed.
If we are working together on a longer project, this will be a more in-depth session of 60 – 90 minutes where we make sure we have as much information as possible about how to proceed. We’ll make decisions about ways of working, ensure we have any tech access we need and will also “money launder” you if we’re doing any work that requires it (if we’re doing financial work, we’ll need to see some documents and get some copies to make sure we abide by our AML requirements).
When are you available?
Typically, we work 9 – 5 but we don’t always take calls or pick up emails as when we are “on the clock” for clients we try not to switch between them. We normally work in client “chunks” to ensure that we are checking in regularly, but this will vary depending on the type of work and how many hours we are contracted for. Different associates may have a different working pattern.
How do I give you work?
You can send us work by email or via a task management system if we’ve agreed one. In order to efficiently manage tasks, we ask that you don’t send tasks via Slack, WhatsApp, text or Facebook message unless that has been agreed, as it gets incredibly complicated and we’d hate anything to be lost.
When will you do my work?
When you send us some work, it really helps us to have a deadline. We reserve hours in our day for our retainer clients and do any ad hoc work around this. We will let you know when to expect something back if you haven’t specified. Because of the way we work, if you are likely to need an immediate response and work turning around the same day on a very regular basis then we probably aren’t a good match.
When do we talk?
We like people! It is really important that we get to know our clients and we think we can do a much better job if we have built up a good relationship with them. So, if you are an ongoing client, we ask that we have regular catch-ups by phone or Zoom. Calls can always be taken out if they aren’t needed and please note that they are billable.
How much does it cost?
Our retainer packages start at £450 plus VAT per month. Do get in touch to discuss getting the right package for you.
On that note, what is chargeable?
Virtual Assistants are a bit like lawyers, we bill our time. We work with online timesheets and click in and out as we switch between clients. Whether it is replying to an email about your work, doing your work, meeting you about work or talking about it on the phone, it will be on the clock. We’ll send an invoice and timesheet either at the end of every month or after the end of a piece of work if it is a one-off.
Our timesheets have a Client View function which enables you to check how many hours we’ve worked. We’re also happy to send timesheets mid-month if needed.
How do retainers work?
For clients that need 10 hours a month or more they can purchase a block of hours up front. Because that helps us with planning and cash flow, we reward upfront payers with a discount on those hours.
The block of hours bought needs to be used up in the month it was bought for, no more than 10% can carry forward to the next month. Any hours on top of those blocks are charged at ad hoc rates.
We can talk regularly to make sure that the right number of hours are being utilised and not wasted to ensure you get the best value for money.
What if there’s a problem?
Of course, there is a learning curve with a new VA, just as there is with an employee. It takes time for people to get to know how things work and there may be a few bumps along the way. The best way to get off to a good start is for you to:
- Give us all the information and access we need to deliver great work
- Commit time to making the relationship work both upfront and on regular calls
- Let us know straight away (within 36 hours) of us delivering some work if there’s anything you’re not happy with
- Be happy to suggest ways to improve things and for us to do likewise
What if you or your associate is sick or falls under a bus or your computer explodes?
In the event of such an issue, we have a crisis management plan in place. We will make contact with you to let you know that something has happened and to discuss next steps to keep you supported. Obviously, we can’t plan for every eventuality but there is a plan!
Meet the team
The service is seamless and everyone that we’ve worked with has been professional, organised and passionate about making our lives easier.Jim Dobel, Q5 Partners LLP
Personally Virtual is made up of real life Ninjas.Charlotte O’Driscoll, Clarasys
Jules is a top notch virtual assistant, and achieves the impossible in terms of scheduling. A pleasure to work with.Tom Gash, Leapwise Advisory
I’d definitely recommend Personally Virtual to anyone!Linda Ryan, Everest Insurance
Sam has been a very welcome addition to our team, given her exemplary enthusiasm and can-do attitudeAnna Chilczuk, Rogers MacJohn
The Personally Virtual team are thoroughly professional and hard-working. They have become a genuine extension of the Q5 team.Olly Purnell, Q5 Partners LLP
Working with Kathy was a godsend. She totally understood that I needed more than a VAShaa Wasmund MBE
I have no hesitation in recommending Personally Virtual who have worked wonders organising me!David Shayor, L&D Limited
Kathy has been a godsend to my business, I wouldn't hesitate to recommend her to those looking for a high level VAKaren Gilbert
I can not recommend them enough – you are absolutely safe in their handsCharlotte O’Driscoll, Clarasys
It would not be an exaggeration to say that having Kathy on board has completely changed my working life!Emma Hakansson Q5 Partners