How to Cope With Increased Administrative Load
It used to be simple. Your business grew, so you hired more salespeople, more secretaries, and more receptionists. Then the world changed and now we carry around our offices in our pockets via our smart phones. But databases still need to be filled, phone calls need to be fielded and appointments still need to be scheduled. As your business grows, so will your workload. How can you cope with the increased administrative load?
The fact is that as an entrepreneur, you’re likely going to assume that you’re better off “doing it all”. It’s a common problem in nonprofits, where staff members don’t realize that a team of highly qualified and trained volunteers could take a massive weight off their shoulders, if they would only invest in mere days to set up a program. And let’s face it, you’re in the business of making money. Spending a relatively minor amount of money to hand over menial tasks to a highly qualified service just makes sense. There are numerous benefits to delegating tasks, including freeing yourself up to improve your small business’ capacity to provide products or services, as well as getting better results when you let a professional do the work. Here are three things you should clear off your plate.
1. Answering the Phone
Does anyone really answer the phone anymore? In an age when you can email, text, tweet, Facebook message or LinkedIn someone, is anyone really dialing down anymore? The answer is yes. The simplest and most elegant way to connect with a customer that isn’t in front of you is still over the phone. But if you’re doing your job right, there are way too many customers for you to pick up the phone every time it rings. That’s why you need a professional. Contract with a professional virtual office service that will have a virtual assistant pick up your phone, with your personally branded message, any time of the day or night. You may be overworked and overstressed but your virtual assistant sees each and every incoming call as an opportunity to help you make a great impression with your customer and help you build your business.
2. Customer Service
When you had five customers, it was easy to manage communications, requests and relationships. But now that your small business has grown, it’s a chore. If you have staff that you’ve hired to run customer service, awesome; train them, trust them, and get out of the way. Otherwise, look at what you can outsource to a virtual office. There are a host of applications that a virtual office can provide ranging from inbound calls to answering emails and conversing with customers on your social media. Even better, a virtual office’s customer service platform costs a fraction of what even part-time employees will cost you in the long run.
3. Administrative Tasks
How much time do you spend answering your company’s generic customer service email, filling out paperwork and other administrative work? It’s a drag. A virtual office can provide highly trained, very articulate and polite virtual assistants whose skills cover a wide variety of the needs of a small business. It’s well worth the investment.