A year and more have gone by since the World Health Organization declared the Covid-19 a pandemic. Millions of people in every country have lived through lockdowns. To keep their businesses afloat, companies have made an abrupt shift from working from home; and millions have lost their jobs. The future looks unsure. We don't know when or if we might ever return to normal. And if it does, we don't know what kind of scars will the outbreak leave us.
Yes, not a lot of jobs can be done at home. But the outbreak is speeding up the trend toward remote workforce, possibly for the long term.
The pandemic is forcing industries to invest with more of their workforce to learn how to use remote technology and hire Virtual Assistants. As a result, we may look at a more permanent turn toward work-from-home.
There are pluses and minuses in a virtual workforce. On the pros side, employees tend to work from home, decreasing overhead expenses, and helps many individuals, especially women, balance work and family roles. On the other hand, managing a virtual team has its hurdles. Professional isolation can have adverse effects on well-being and career development.
Here's why working remotely will become the norm, and virtual assistants are here to stay.
Employees tend to be productive when working remote–Recent trends suggest that productivity growth has been plummeting for the past 15 years. They believe that this downfall is because of the office's distraction that keeps employees from doing their best work. A remote team or a virtual team could reverse that trend. Free from everyday commute hurdles, constant watercooler interruptions, and complex systems, remote workers have given space to succeed. According to a Citrix-One-Poll study on 10,000 global workers, 69% of workers who responded reports that they are more enthusiastic and productive when working from their homes' comfort than they are in their offices.
It's no doubt that employees want the flexibility of working from home. So what do the workers at these companies think? Herd claimed that up to 90% of the workforce have spoken that they never want to be in an office again working full time. He also said that, for the most brilliant people and most exciting companies he knows personally, remote work is the plan in check for the next decade and long after the covid-19 has ended.
Remote workers work for longer hours. Despite the connotations that remote workers spend their working hours running errands or watching Netflix, the reality is that many employees likely work longer shifts when working remotely. Going back to Citrix-One-Poll's survey, 72% of workers who responded said they work the same or longer hours when working from home than they did when working in the office. One reason: a virtual team working from home typically commences their days earlier because they don't have the reason to commute. And apparently, they can work later in the evening as their "workplace" is just a few steps away.
Work from home is fiscally frugal. Employers and employees save a lot more money working from home. "Global Workplace Analytics measures that employers can save over $11,000 per year per employee. The savings are from the cheaper cost of office space, increased productivity, reduced absenteeism, and less turnover". Many companies are transcending to fully remote; they hire Virtual Assistants and opt to renew leases on their offices. This will save tons of cash in the long run and provide more capital to be reinvested for its growth. The company can save more money, and so does the employees. Employees can save an average of $500 per month when they work from home. That's a whopping $6000 per year. This sums mainly due to lower food costs, gas costs, parking, and car maintenance.
There are benefits to being a "remote first" company. Organizations who entirely go decentralized recognize that the most valuable benefits are access to a continuous talent pool. Rather than absorbing the top best ten people in a 40-mile radius of the office, they can hire the best candidate anywhere in the world. But it's not always having the best talent pool; what matters the most is being able to retain your talent. Fortunately, the flexibility to work from anywhere can make a qualified candidate choose your company over the others.
Working remotely allows for better worker morale. The biggest advantage of employees working from home is better worker morale. In a recent survey conducted by FlexJobs, over 4,000 employees who responded said that working from home during the pandemic improved their work-life balance. The primary reasons are because they can finally spend more time with their partner, family, and pets. Also, a study way back in 2015 found that a woman who just gave birth had lower levels of depression when they can work from home instead of getting back to the office. Employees also worry less about taking time away from work to spend some time with their child, spouse, and family members.
How Can You Leverage a Virtual Assistant During A Pandemic?
In the wake of the Coronavirus pandemic, successful organizations are leveraging virtual assistants to streamline business operations. Despite strict governmental directives for city lockdowns to curb the spread of COVID-19, companies are finding it easy to meet business needs, thanks to virtual assistant services.
Although virtual assistants have been here for a while, now they are making headway in helping businesses with a variety of tasks, including:
- Online business management, such as coming up with plans to make the company better
- Project management
- Customer relationship management (CRM)
- Web design
- Web development
- Process management, such as updating process documents
- Graphic design
- Administrative tasks, such as email management, planning meetings, calendar scheduling, help desk support, market research, etc.
- Content creation or perfecting company content
- Digital marketing tasks, such as product promotion and advertising, analytics, sales, email marketing and many more
- Social media management, including responding to chats about business inquiries, developing editorial content for sharing, and many more.
Hiring a virtual assistant (VA) is crucial for your business's success in the long run. Besides that, it guarantees you higher work efficiency and more productive results, without added overhead expenses.
Here are some of the advantages of hiring a virtual assistant for businesses to help you get through the COVID-19 pandemic.
Outsourcing work to a virtual assistant in the Philippines or any other part of the world hardly ever requires extra expenses. For instance, most companies are not in a position to hire permanent employees due to financial strains brought about by the global pandemic. For this reason, the best solution is to hire a professional virtual assistant from Kaya Services.
- Reduced overhead expenses
One of the primary reasons most companies are leveraging virtual assistant services is to cut down on cost, especially during these uncertain times. Generally, with VAs, you only pay-per task or pay-per-hour, with no payments for benefits, taxes, and so on. This way, you'll be able to cut down on costs and invest in more essential aspects of the business to drive success.
- Increased productivity
Companies can't afford to waste time on administrative tasks and neglect core business activities. Thus, a virtual assistant Australia, can take up these tasks. This will then lose up time to focus on core business tasks such as building the right strategy, expanding the business, or improving the marketing approach.
- Offers cost-effective business scalability
Business growth demands capital. Hiring virtual assistants will help you reduce your financial needs and grow your business post the COVID-19 pandemic. Additionally, you and your company will be able to cut down on management and development costs.
- Offer 24/7 customer support.
If you want reliable, efficient, and round the clock customer support, VAs are the way to go. Hiring virtual assistants to oversee your customer support tasks not only frees up your time but also ensures that your clients always receive the help they need.
- Time management
Hiring Virtual Assistants leverage any businesses to leverage their time more effectively. For instance, you wouldn't want to waste 8 hours a day doing a task like organizing out your inbox, right? Instead, as a business owner, you want to use that time conceptualizing innovative business strategies to help your business thrive. In that case, having a Virtual Assistant from the Philppines your business can utilise can take care of the routine tasks that potentially eat up your time.
- Promote your business during Covid-19
A lot of businesses are closed during this pandemic. Onboarding a VA can help your business focus on advertising, so you can let your customers know that you are open and ready to cater for services. These digital tasks may include promoting your services and availability on social media platforms, conducting online campaigns, and submitting your business story in newspapers. Having a VA dedicated to helping you pull these online presences off could help your business stay afloat during these unprecedented times.
- Provide specialised expertise for complex tasks
Apart from Virtual Assistants providing you with administrative support in non-core business functions, they can also assist you in your business's technical areas that need a specific skill set (e.g. accountants, web developers, content creators, and more). These Virtual assistants are already industry experts, so they know the ins and outs more than you know. They can help you address complex points to give a better direction for your business.
Based on recent trends, customers are more likely to shop online because of widespread lockdowns. E-commerce increases a whopping 32% in the second quarter of 2020 alone. If your business doesn't have a website yet, you are losing the game. VAs can help you set up, design, and maintain your official website and more.
- Establish your business to be digital-ready
It's 2021, and digital promotions will continue to increase as traditional marketing and PR get a facelift this year. With everyone you know staying at home and doing online transactions, every business should be digital-ready. About 3.6 billion individuals are using social media platforms in 2020 and are foresighted to increase to 4.41 billion in 2025. With that said. Having an active online presence would magnify your business. Virtual Assistants can help you set up and optimize your business's social media platforms. The more you make your business accessible online with the aid of a Virtual Assistant, the more customers will come to your business.
- Other Perks
Many Virtual Assistants are highly experienced and talented in business procedures and can help you out in various ways to efficiently run your business. They come in handy, especially in tasks that require market research, setting up meetings, data encoding, replying to emails and leads, transcription, web development, and a lot more. Basically, hiring Virtual Assistants can help ease your workload by getting more work done in a more petite time frame. In short, they improve your productivity because they are available 24/7.
Regardless of how you managed your business through 2020, it's important to adapt to changes now that 2020 is upon us. Don't hesitate to ask for a hand along the way. If you need guidance on how a virtual assistant can help you in your business, feel free to ask away. Visit us at kaya.services, and get in touch with our staff today and let us help you move your business in a more precise direction. Remember, remote work is here to stay. Plain and simple.