I have already talked on this blog plenty of times about the benefits of having a virtual assistant. A virtual assistant can help you accomplish more things in your business and free up your time, so you can either take more time off or focus more on revenue generating activities. It is important when you hire a VA to consider very specifically the goals that you hope to achieve by working with somebody else.
Far too often, people take on the role of hiring out and do not realize that they have not given clear instructions or that they are too all over the place. Virtual assistants do best when you give them specific tasks. While some virtual assistants can help with bigger strategy level thinking, it can be challenging to start of a successful business relationship without this.
One of the best ways to clarify your expectations as well as some of the critical terms around how the VA will work and how the VA will get paid is through a contract. A contract is a great way to make sure that both of you are on the same page before you work together. It is the virtual assistant’s last opportunity to review all of your expectations and ask any further questions to assist you in carrying out this project.
How Does a Contract Help Your New Business Relationship?
Having a contract ensures that both of you are protected in the event that this relationship does not work out. It also helps to minimize administrative tasks on your end because it clarifies how and when invoices can be sent, how the work will be completed and other various terms of the relationship between the two of you.
Knowing well in advance what each person is responsible for and the terms to which you have agreed lays the ground for a successful communication relationship. Having a contract also enables you to determine when the relationship is ending. Some virtual assistants may require a contract that they own because they hope that you will purchase a monthly retainer.
If you work with a virtual assistant on a regular basis it is not uncommon to sign a contract. For smaller projects, some virtual assistants may forego this altogether, but when working with an online business manager, for example, he or she may ask for a three-month minimum of a retainer project in order to continue working on it. If this is requested, make sure you read the contract carefully to ensure that it is in line with what you were hoping as well.
Get a Lawyer to Review a Draft of the Contract First
Having an attorney review or draft contracts is strongly recommended. I am not a lawyer and cannot give you legal advice, but having an attorney who can assist you with this process is extremely beneficial for you and your business.