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Once you have decided you need the extra help, it’s time to figure out who to hire.
Analyzing your day to day business and what you need from an assistant can you help you narrow down the process. There are many ways you can go about hiring a personal assistant, whether it’s a previously licensed Realtor who knows the business, an unlicensed assistant, virtual assistant, in person, part time, or full time.
The key is figuring what is best for your business! First ask yourself if it is more beneficial for your assistant to be a licensed agent or unlicensed.
Next, you need to decide if you want to hire an assistant for part or full time. Your part time personal assistant will only be paid by the number of hours he or she is of service to you.
A full-time assistant can get a little more complicated but if the help is needed, a full-time assistant can be very rewarding. When you hire an assistant full time, you need to remember that this is most likely their only source of income. One of the most important components of an employer-employee relationship is that the assistant feels like he or she is respected; this includes getting paid adequately.
If you’re not ready for that first hire, you might want to consider another option that basically accomplishes the same purpose: outsourcing. In today’s world, “outsourcing” might mean hiring a company to do some task, but more often than not, it means hiring a “virtual assistant.”
After, decide if it’s important to you and for your business if your assistant is in person or virtual.
If you need someone to file hard copies or perform other duties that can’t be done over a computer, you’ll need an in-person assistant. Otherwise, a virtual assistant would probably be the most suitable option.
With a virtual assistant, there will always be a sense of detachment, and, therefore, an inability to take advantage of qualities in your assistant you would find if you were with the assistant everyday.
But, of course, there are some advantages to having a virtual assistant as well.
Since the contractor is virtual, they work off site. This allows you to save on expenses such as ordering a new desk and purchasing a computer. This is a win particularly if you happen to work remotely or independently yourself. You can work remotely and at the same time have the additional assistance you need.
So, you’ve decided you want to hire an assistant, whether he or she will be part or full time, licensed or unlicensed and if the assistant will be in person or virtual. Now, it’s time for the interview.
Before the interview it is important to take the time to write the kind of recruitment ad that attracts great candidates. This primarily involves giving an accurate sense of the role and its responsibilities. A great job posting piques the interest of those who are truly qualified and discourages those who aren’t. A well-written job description also sets the stage for your new administrative assistant's success by giving them clear guidelines and a good understanding of your expectations from day one.
Now it's time for the interview, be sure to ask innocent-sounding (but very loaded) questions. What does that mean? Having a few unique questions will you help you get a good idea of their character. For example, “how was your weekend?” or “what do you normally do on weekends?” They seem like innocent conversation starters, but it really is gauging to see how social they are and what their life is like day-to-day.
Your candidate will come prepared with the typical answers to questions they always receive- Are you good at time management? Yes. What is one challenge in the workplace you had to overcome? Blah, blah, blah. Those questions/answers will not give you real insight. Sprinkle in questions about weekend plans, hobbies, goals, school work, and you will learn a lot more about whom you are going to hire. It’s also important to consider life experience and career experiences- both can be equally as important.
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