Choosing the right virtual assistant solution plays a huge role in your team’s success, productivity, and work-life balance. We get that so, we’ve created this guide to help you gain a better understanding of how our managed service approach can give your team greater leverage. In it, we’ll dive into the following topics:
- How your team can leverage an assistant. In this section, we’ll explain the types of tasks your team can delegate to an assistant.
- Getting virtual assistants set up with your tools. Here, you’ll find answers to the most common questions we receive about getting your assistant set up with your organization’s tools.
- How we train your assistant to excel at your projects. This section gives an overview of the training we give all of our assistants and how we’ll get your VA up-to-speed on all of your team’s tasks.
- Maximize the value you get from our service. These tips will help you maximize the leverage your team gains from having an assistant.
- How we ensure your information remains secure. Get an overview of our robust IT security policies.
- Our process for minimizing the impact of time off and turnover. What happens if your assistant is out of the office? Find out how we mitigate disruptions and ensure you never go a business day without support.
- Scaling support to meet your changing needs. Prialto is designed to scale with you. Learn how we can support your growing needs.
If you have questions about anything in this guide, feel free to reach out to us:
How Your Team Can Leverage an Assistant
Your assistant is capable of tackling a wide variety of tasks to meet your needs. To give you a better idea of what that looks like, here are some of the common ways we support our members.
Since our experience spans several industries, our assistants are capable of tackling a wide variety of tasks. When working with enterprises, we typically support their executive, sales, and operations teams. To give you a better idea of what that looks like, the next few pages will explain the tasks that are most popular among our members.
All of our virtual assistants are pre-trained to do standard executive assistant tasks including:
- Calendar management
- Call screening
- Document formatting
- Professional networking support
Our virtual assistants empower top-performing sales teams to spend more time with prospects by offloading tedious tasks including:
- CRM Management
- Campaign Management
- Prospect research
- Follow-up management
- Professional networking support
We enable operations teams work more efficiently by ensuring all of their data is standardized and up-to-date and helping with other tedious tasks.
- Data entry
- Data cleaning
- Document formatting
- Back-office processes
Keep in mind that you can mix and match processes to fit your team’s needs and that is just a snapshot of the work our virtual assistant can do for you. Prior to signing up with us, an account executive will work with you to develop a custom implementation plan that guides the first couple of months of service. After that, your Engagement Manager will help your team offload additional projects as their needs evolve.
Getting Virtual Assistants Set Up with Your Tools
Here are some common Q & A’s people have about getting their assistant set up with their systems.
Q: Do you support [insert tool]?
A: Your assistant can use any online tool that you use. We support members in numerous roles and industries so, chances are, one of our employees has experience with your systems.
You can check out our tools database for a list of the tools we use most frequently:
If you use a tool that we don’t have experience with, we’ll just ask you to quickly share your screen to walk us through how you use it. Then, we’ll do some additional research about the tool and train your assistant to use it.
Q: Can you help my company adopt new tools?
A: Yes, our Engagement Managers regularly set up CRMs, task management software and other tools for our clients. We also teach your virtual assistants how to use those tools.
Q: How do I give my assistant access to my tools?
A: You will give the login info for all of the tools your assistant is working with to your Engagement Manager. They will add your logins to the password sharing tool, Bitium and use that to securely give your primary and back up assistants access.
Q: How do I ensure the VAs won’t cause any issues within our systems?
A: Our assistants will only access your tools to do tasks that your team tells them to do and will follow clearly written processes. Since all of our assistants can only access your tools while they’re at work in our offices, we have significant oversight over this.
Have any other questions? Feel free to contact us:
How We Train Your Assistant to Excel at Your Processes
Getting your assistants up-to-speed on your team’s processes is quick and easy. We pre-train all of our assistants on a variety of sales and admin support tasks so they start with a strong foundation of skills.
Many of our accounts find that the training we provide encompasses most of what they want their assistants to know. As a result, you may only have to train your assistants on two topics:
- Your company policies as they pertain to the work your assistants are doing. For example, if VAs are helping your team with expense reports, share your company policies regarding how to file expense reports.
- People’s individual preferences for the tasks they offload. For example, someone on your team may prefer to fly a certain airline while another person prefers to have the majority of their meetings scheduled in the afternoon.
If you’re offloading custom processes to your assistant, you’ll also need to train your assistant how to do those tasks. To do so, you (or someone on your team) just needs to schedule a training call with your assistant and Engagement Manager. We’ll record the call, document the process, and ensure your assistant understands how to complete it.
Read More: How to Best Leverage Your Engagement Manager
Our Process for Minimizing the Impact of PTO and Turnover
If you’ve had an assistant before, you know how difficult it is to suddenly go without support while your assistant is out of the office or, even worse, when they quit.
We understand that these kinds of disruptions can have a huge negative impact on your team’s productivity and work-life balance. So, we actively prevent time-off and turnover from interrupting the service our accounts receive. Here’s how:
- We train back-up assistants. When your primary assistant is out of the office, a backup who fully understands all your tools and processes will take over so you never go a business day without support. The backup assistants assigned to your account are typically assistants for other members of your team so that they are highly knowledgeable about your organization’s standards.
- We invest in employee retention. Unlike in-house assistants who change jobs on average every eight months, the majority of our assistants stay with us for many years. We offer a wide variety of incentives, including performance-based bonuses, office parties, company-wide recognition programs, a vacation stipend for their two-year anniversary, etc. to encourage our best employees to remain loyal to our company.
Even if your assistant does decide to move on, we’ll have a replacement trained and ready before they leave to ensure you have a smooth transition.
Maximize the Value You Get From Our Service
As the sponsor of a virtual assistant program, you need to ensure your employees are satisfied with the service and getting an ROI.
Upon request, your Engagement Manager can provide you with a variety of tools to assess our service including:
- Weekly or quarterly feedback reports. We track all the feedback we’re given and can share that info with you.
- Quarterly utilization reports that show how much each of your employees are using the service.
- Reports documenting all of the work we do for your organization.
Most of the sponsors we work with meet with their Engagement Managers one or two times per month to address team satisfaction, new company policies, new projects, and other news related to our service.
Your Engagement Manager will also work with each member of your team to help them develop a productive relationship with their virtual assistants.
Like working with an in-house assistant, your team needs to develop a productive working relationship to successfully utilize a VA. Here are some best practices that will ensure your team gets maximum leverage from their assistants:
- Communicate with context.
- It is essential that you communicate your preferences to us. Provide context and direction with your requests and we will document your preferences in your Prialto Member Manual (PMM) so we know for the future. For example, tell us about your places to host meetings, times you prefer to communicate with us, travel preferences etc.
- Embrace clarifying questions.
- Your VA is trained to ask clarifying questions to learn your preferences. He/she documents your answers in your member manual. If you’re repeating yourself, reach out to your Engagement Manager and they will improve your service. For example, If you ask your assistant to schedule a meeting but don’t say whether it will be in-person or a call, your VA will ask you clarifying questions. If you always meet with this contact in-person, tell us and we will note it in your manual.
- Leverage your Engagement Manager.
- Your Engagement Managers resolves service issues so you don’t have to. Don’t let little mistakes or frustrations go because you don't want to spend time handling the issue. Instead, loop in your EM, sit back and watch things improve.
- Think about your business processes and preferences.
- What are your typical scheduling patterns? What are the pain points in your current process you would like us to help iron out? If you have a big picture idea or process you would like to offload but aren't sure how, tell your Engagement Manager and they will be your thought partner in establishing a proceses.
The core of these best practices is simply having your team communicating clearly with their assistants and Engagement Manager. If they do that, you’ll get a huge return on your investment.
How We Ensure Your Information Remains Secure
Confidentiality and data security have been infused into Prialto’s service platform since the company’s founding in 2008. We have a comprehensive security infrastructure to ensure that client information is held in strict confidence, supported by stringent protocols and best practices.
In addition, we work closely with each account to jointly determine which data and systems will be handled by the Prialto team.
Prialto’s data security infrastructure includes physical, electronic, and human security to provide a comprehensive set of safeguards for client data. This process has been developed in conjunction with industry experts and is continuously renewed and refined. Here is an overview of our core security systems:
Our information security systems include:
Our human security systems include:
Our physical security systems include:
If you have any questions about our security policies or would like to learn more about specific systems, feel free to contact us. An account executive will reach out to do an in-depth review of our IT security policies and address any questions that you have.
Scaling Support to Meet Your Changing Needs
Our service is designed to easily adapt to your changing needs. Here are answers to a few of the common questions we get about obtaining additional support:
Q: Can an assistant support multiple people?
A: A single assistant can support up to three people as long as their total combined needs average out to about 55 hours per month and they have similar needs.
Q: How long does it take to add additional units?
A: We can on-board new members of your team within three to five business days as long as you get their IT set-up completed within that time frame.
Q: Can I drop units that I no longer need?
A: Yes, you can reduce the number of units you have. The amount of time that it takes to fully terminate a unit is based on the notice length stated in your agreement.
Q: Can I transition units to different people on my team?
A: Yes, you can transition units. If you’re transitioning units to someone who has similar needs, we’ll host a quick transition call to introduce them to their VA and gather their preferences. This can be completed within a week. If you’re transitioning the unit to someone who plans to offload projects that we’re not currently doing for a member of your team then you’ll also have a couple of training calls to review those. This may take a couple of weeks depending on how complex your projects are.
Interested in learning more? Here’s how to get started:
- Call us at 1-888-873-6101 or email us to set up a discovery call. In the call, one of our sales executives will gather more information about your needs and help you explore whether Prialto is a good fit for you.
- Take our Needs Analysis Survey. The survey will help you and our sales team clarify what your needs are. Our sales team will combine the results with the information gathered in your discovery call to create your implementation plan.
- Schedule your implementation plan review call. In this call, your sales executive will walk you through exactly how we’ll help you achieve your goals if you sign up with us. This call is also a great opportunity to clear up any other questions you have.
- Get ready to on-board. Once you’re satisfied with your implementation plan, we’ll send over an agreement and start preparing for your on-boarding.
About the Author: Emily leads Prialto's content production and distribution team with a special passion for helping people realize success. Her work and collaborations have appeared in Entrepreneur, Inc. and the Observer among others