I had a very interesting email come through this week from a VA. I replied and thought I would share my response with you. The question was this, “I have noticed that in the local paper a couple of companies who are looking for a PA/Admin assistant and I was considering contacting them and letting them know about me, and what I can do for them, but I’m not sure if I should, write, email or call. And then I’m not 100% sure what I should be saying to them!”.
This is a good question.
Applying for job adverts in the local paper can be very hit and miss. Many companies based outside of the virtual world will have a bit of a Jurassic mentality when it comes to “Virtual” assistants.
You have to keep in mind that you are not an employee anymore, and those HR departments and other companies posting job adverts will tend to like to ‘own’ you – and will only hire employees for what they believe is the security of their company.
Based on this, the only angle you can approach this with is by “saving the bottom line”. I would put a proposal together based on how much money they can save by hiring your ‘company’ instead of a direct employee PA/office assistant, for example, they get exactly the same quality of work – if not better, because you have other interests (your own company) there are also other perks to highlight such as no sick pay, no holiday pay, only pay for time on task, no office space required etc… a cost comparison for these basic overheads would be ideal – then outline the total difference in cost for them if they were to hire your ‘company’ compared to the salary or rate they are offering in their advert. If you work out cheaper for the bottom line, they may just take notice of you and want to learn more.
Once you have put this together, send this with a proposal of services offered, along with your confidentiality policies into them and wait either a week, or if the advert states a deadline, 3 days after the deadline, and if you haven’t heard from them during this time, do a direct follow up call, to ask if they took your proposal into consideration. If they say no, and you’re feeling bold, ask them on the phone the reason why your proposal was not considered – and if they say no and you’re not feeling bold, do a follow up email to them politely asking if they wouldn’t mind giving you some feedback as to why they decided not to consider your services on this occasion.
It’s a funny old world we live in, and I think if you are lucky enough to find an open minded small-medium enterprise business owner, then you just might be in luck…