We are looking to hire a virtual assistant to help prescreen sellers & potential sellers. Our schedules do not allow us to spend time on the phone during "normal" calling hours, so we need to explore other options. Please let us know if you have any suggestions on who we can reach out to for help with this. If you have any experiences (good or bad) with a VA please let us know who that was with as well - if you don't mind sharing. Thank you!
I've used VAs for a completely different business, and to do so successfully I had to take the time to write very clear instructions.
My business relied completely on email and other online communications, so I have no insights on how to manage them for real time or voice related communications, but I will say that I had to tailor my VAs to those parts of the business that could tolerate turnaround times of one working day (the VAs were in Asia), and that focused on routine activities and communications with management rather than with communications with customers or actions that were not covered by established procedures.
The Tim Ferris book 4-Hour Workweek turned me on to the idea of VAs, and it took me a while to warm up to the idea. My suggestion is to start small and see how it goes.
Several people have recommended http://www.patlive.com/, but I have no experience with them myself.
@Todd Curtis The reason I have a VA is because of 4 Hour Workweek too! I am obsessed with the idea of outsourcing. I agree, LOTS of time has to be taken to get your instructions down to the point where just about anybody can pick them up and follow them. It is worth the time investment though. The only thing I have my VA do right now is pull leads off of Craigslist. I am hoping to train another (or the same one) to pull MLS leads in the future and do some basic evaluating/filtering. I got my VA from oDesk, and there are tons of them also available on elance. Both those sites are the biggest players in the VA space. I have not used a VA to take phone calls. I am hesitant of this because of the language barrier, plus I think there is a lot to be said by taking calls with a charismatic and personal tone. You can hire English speaking VAs and highly qualified VAs... but you will spend some major coin on them ($30+/hour) instead of $3-5/hour.
Thank you for the patlive suggestion. We will check it out.
I am in the middle of 4 hour work week right now & find it very intriguing:)
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