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  • Writer's pictureJoanne Butcher


Whether your business is fairly new or has been going for a while, employing the right person to assist you can be a tough decision to make. Should you hire a freelancer or take on an employee? What are the benefits of working with a virtual assistant vs employee?

Making a poor decision can cost you a lot of time, energy and money.

It has become more common in today’s cloud-based, connected world, for entrepreneurs and small business owners to work with a virtual assistant rather than take on an employee.

It’s not a secret anymore - if you want your business to grow rapidly, outsourcing part of your workload to a virtual assistant is a smart move.

Virtual assistants go well beyond typical administrative secretaries. Virtual assistants can do admin work such as answering emails and managing your calendar, as well as more specialised tasks, such as social media management, invoicing, copy-writing, proofreading and managing events.

If you are not sure whether a virtual assistant or an employee would be better for you and your business, here are a few things to consider when making up your mind.

Virtual Assistant vs Employee Cost Comparison

Although the hourly rate of a virtual assistant can initially seem slightly higher compared to an employee, as an employer you are also responsible for the following additional expenses: -

  • Employers Insurance

  • Employers Tax

  • Holiday Pay

  • Sick Pay

Not to mention buying office equipment and the rental of office space!

When you work with a virtual assistant you are only responsible for paying the actual hours worked or the project rate agreed upon.

Virtual assistants typically provide tracking for hours they work and only bill you for the hours they work each week. If you don’t have a project or task for them, then you don’t pay.

Because virtual assistants work from a remote location, they provide their own equipment and they pay their own taxes and insurance.

Other Costs

Then there are the other costs of hiring a virtual assistant vs employee. These 'soft' costs are more difficult to quantify.

They include: -

  • your time spent finding, hiring, training and managing an employee.

    • Lunch and coffee time (the time employees are being paid but not working).

    • Retaining employees longer than they are needed.

Full-time employees may require a few weeks of training to get up to speed. Virtual assistants are typically hired for that specific skill set and will get up to speed much more quickly, or in many cases 'be ready to hit the ground running!’.

If an employer wants their employees to learn new skills, it is up to the employer to pay for ongoing education and training. Virtual assistants understand they can increase their own value by upgrading their knowledge on their own, and they do this without cost to their clients.

In summary, if you own a small business, are a sole trader or an entrepreneur and you need assistance, working with a virtual assistant is an extremely cost-effective and time-efficient way to do it!

Whether it is staying on top of the administration your business is generating or you need someone to keep ahead of planning and scheduling meetings or social media posts, there will be a virtual assistant with just the right skill set needed to assist you.


If this sounds like you, I would love to have a chat to find out how I may be able to work with you, so please do get in touch.


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