32 Ways Virtual Support Services Scales Your Small Business

32 Ways Virtual Support Services Scales Your Small Business

Business owners, CEOs, Entrepreneurs and Solopreneurs have a hard time letting go of pieces of their business, many times it’s because they don’t know what to hand off. Some are great at delegating while others, let’s just say they need a bit of coaching and prompting. That is where our Onboarding Concierge comes in. However, the problem with delegating is that usually, you don’t know what to give to your assistant or team member. Or they are great at delegating a task but terrible at giving them the information and access they need to complete it.

 

The Vicious Cycle of a Business Owner/CEO

You may have gone through this cycle as a Business Owner, CEO, Entrepreneur or Solopreneur.

Step 1: You are bogged down by various tasks, a bottleneck in the organization and when asked how many hours you work you say, “all of them”.

Step 2: You recognize the need for support, so you search the internet and ask peers for recommendations.

Step 3: You choose someone and hire them either on payroll or contract.

Step 4: You delegate a task to them.

Step 5: They ask for access or do something incorrectly or not the way you do it.

Step 6: Instead of correcting the error or granting them access, you do it yourself without providing feedback.

Step 7: You keep doing that task yourself and stop delegating because “I can do it myself faster.”

Step 8: You fire or ghost your new hire.

Step 9: You are bogged down by various tasks, a bottleneck in the organization and when asked how many hours you work you say, “all of them”.

Step 10: You recognize the need for support…

…you get the idea. If this sounds like you, here are the top tasks to delegate and here is how VEA onboards all of our clients with goals, clear communication and a clear plan of action to help you exit the cycle for good

 

Top 15 tasks for a Virtual Executive Assistant (VEA):

1. Email management: Efficiently organizing, filtering, and responding to emails to maintain communication flow.

2. Calendar management: Scheduling appointments, meetings, and events to optimize time management.

3. Travel arrangements: Planning and booking travel itineraries including flights, accommodations, and transportation.

4. Meeting coordination: Scheduling, preparing agendas, and taking minutes for meetings.

5. Administrative tasks: Handling paperwork, filing, data entry, and other general administrative duties.

6. Research: Conducting online research on various topics to gather information and data.

7. Correspondence: Drafting and editing letters, memos, and other business communications.

8. Document preparation: Creating and formatting documents such as presentations, reports, and spreadsheets.

9. Project coordination: Assisting with project management tasks, tracking deadlines, and coordinating team efforts.

10. Event planning: Organizing company events, conferences, and team-building activities.

11. Client/customer support: Providing assistance and support to clients/customers via phone, email, or chat.

12. Database management: Updating and maintaining databases with accurate information.

13. Follow-ups: Sending reminders and follow-up messages to ensure tasks and deadlines are met.

14. Vendor management: Coordinating with vendors and suppliers for procurement and deliveries.

15. Personal assistance: Providing personal support to executives, such as managing personal appointments and errands.

Top 10 tasks for a Bookkeeper:

1. Accounts receivable: Invoicing clients and tracking payments owed to the company.

2. Accounts payable: Processing and recording payments to vendors and suppliers.

3. Bank reconciliation: Balancing and reconciling bank statements with financial records.

4. Payroll processing: Calculating employee wages, taxes, and benefits, and ensuring timely payroll.

5. Expense tracking: Recording and categorizing business expenses for accurate financial reporting.

6. Financial reporting: Generating and analyzing financial statements such as balance sheets and income statements.

7. Tax preparation: Gathering financial data and documents to prepare for tax filings.

8. Budgeting: Assisting in the creation and monitoring of budgets to manage company finances effectively.

9. Financial analysis: Analyzing financial data to identify trends, opportunities, and areas for improvement.

10. Audit support: Providing documentation and assistance during financial audits and reviews.

Top 7 tasks for an Online Business Manager (OBM):

1. Strategy development: Collaborating with business owners to develop and implement strategic plans and goals.

2. Team management: Overseeing and coordinating the activities of virtual teams and freelancers.

3. Process improvement: Identifying and implementing systems and processes to streamline operations and increase efficiency.

4. Project management: Planning, organizing, and executing projects to ensure timely completion and quality deliverables.

5. Performance tracking: Monitoring key performance indicators (KPIs) and metrics to measure business performance.

6. Client/customer relations: Managing client relationships and ensuring high levels of customer satisfaction.

7. Revenue generation: Developing and implementing strategies to increase sales, revenue, and profitability for the business.

Clarity

We hope this brings clarity to our three most popular virtual support services. VEA has helped hundreds of business owners, CEOs, Solopreneurs and Entrepreneurs delegate administrative, time-consuming, and energy-draining tasks since 2016. Allowing them to focus on high-level tasks that grow their business. What do you need to delegate to free up your time and energy?

 

Derek Burbidge
Manager of Sales & Marketing

Busting Top 5 Myths About Outsourcing Bookkeeping Services

Busting Top 5 Myths About Outsourcing Bookkeeping Services

I say it all the time, 99% of business owners did not get into business to do bookkeeping, you got into business to sell your products and services. Bookkeeping is usually the first task to get pushed down your to-do list and the task that gives you the most headaches. Which means, it is the first task that should be outsourced.

But it shouldn’t be outsourced to anyone, the bookkeeper you hire should be experienced and you should understand the fundamentals of bookkeeping. A good bookkeeper will help you understand your financial statements but before you hire you probably have a few questions (or hesitations) about how bookkeeping works, how to find a great bookkeeper and where to even start the process. Let’s break down the top 5 myths of outsourcing bookkeeping.

Image with a calculator and spreadsheet in the background and "myth" written on the front

Myth #1: A Business Owner Should Do Their Own Bookkeeping

True…and false…A business owner will probably start by doing their own bookkeeping but if you don’t complete your bookkeeping according to standardized accounting practices’ and don’t know how to read the financial statements, you should hand it off immediately. Most business owners who engage us to do their bookkeeping usually have the same story: They are spending evenings catching up on receipts, categorizing expenses wrong and spending thousands more on an accountant who has to tidy up at year-end.

If you are not making mistakes and understand how to read the financial statements, great, but your time is still better spent elsewhere doing high-level tasks that grow your business. Your bookkeeping can be done by a professional who checks in to ensure you are sending the documents they need so that when it comes time for you to meet with them to review the statements, they are accurately prepared.

Truth #1: A Business Owner does not need to do their own bookkeeping, however, they do need to hire someone qualified and understand how to read the financial statements.

Myth #2: My Accountant Can Do My Books

At a premium, absolutely they can! Accountant rates are at least double the price of a bookkeeper and many accountants hand-off the bookkeeping to a trained bookkeeper anyway but still charge the accountant rate. (Not so fun fact, many Accountants don’t know how to do bookkeeping.) As mentioned above, if you are using an Accountant to do your books, it is usually done at year-end which gives you 12 months without proper data on how your business is doing. If you prefer higher rates and no financial picture for 12 months, hire an Accountant instead of a Bookkeeper to do your books.

Truth #2: An Accountant can do your books at a much higher rate.

Myth #3: A Bookkeeper Isn’t Trustworthy with My Bank Accounts

No one should have direct access to your bank accounts unless you absolutely trust them and review bank statements separately on your own. A Bookkeeper should have access to your bank account but with limited permissions. By giving them limited permissions this protects both of you. If a Bookkeeper is eager to have your username and password without limited permissions, you should find another Bookkeeper.

To get around having complete access to your accounts, Bookkeepers will receive your financial statements through software like QuickBooks Online (QBO), Zoho or Sage. This is outside of having limited permissions, but using a proper software and giving your Bookkeeper limited permissions means less work for you.

Truth #3: A Bookkeeper doesn’t want or need full access to your bank account.

Myth #4: Virtual Bookkeepers are Less Experienced

True and false. This should be a concern for you so only hire a Bookkeeper with years of experience, comes with references and never sign a long-term contract. Go month to month and if you don’t like what they are doing or feel they don’t know what they are doing, remove their access and move on to someone else.

At VEA Office Professionals, our Bookkeepers have at least 5, but most have 10+ years of experience working with business owners. They have seen it all and are not afraid of messy books. Our team will have your books up to date with financial statements coming out every month, so you know exactly where your business stands financially. Our team is also located across North America, so they understand the expectations of the federal government when it comes to bookkeeping. Whether you need a Bookkeeper in Calgary, a Bookkeeper in Toronto or a Bookkeeper in New York, our team knows the ins and outs to keep you on track and within the laws.

Truth #4: The right Bookkeeper is experienced and will help you grow your business.

Myth #5: I Can’t Send My Receipts to an Outsourced Bookkeeper

With the software that we use, you never have to send a physical receipt to anyone ever again. Dext allows you to take a picture of receipts or forward email receipts or invoices. From there it syncs up to your bookkeeping software, meaning those shoe boxes full of receipts are great but basically obsolete.  It also saves your Bookkeeper time from having to reconcile all your receipts, which saves you money.

Truth #5: You don’t need to send your receipts to your Bookkeeper.

Conclusion:

You should be hesitant about hiring anyone, let alone a virtual Bookkeeper, but you should also be vigilant about ensuring who you hire is certified, experienced and up-to-date on local regulations. If being clear on the financial picture of your business, not having to hand off receipts and not staying up in the evening to complete your books sound too good to be true, book a call with VEA to get back to high-level tasks while trusting that your books are well taken care of.

Derek Burbidge
Manager of Sales & Marketing

 

 

Is it Effective to Hire a Virtual Bookkeeper?

Is it Effective to Hire a Virtual Bookkeeper?

Bookkeeping is an essential part of running a business. But many companies ask themselves, “Why hire a bookkeeper?” Here is what a virtual Bookkeeper is and why hiring one for your business saves you time, and money and helps you grow your business.

No matter how big or small, a business needs to have a reliable, trustworthy, and knowledgeable Bookkeeper. A virtual Bookkeeper might sound out of the ordinary. However, this type of service has gained popularity over the last several years, especially since the pandemic. 

Virtual bookkeeping does not mean downloading accounting software. You also must spend time inputting data and worrying that it’s accurate. These are tasks that a bookkeeper can handle for you. As a business owner, you might even find yourself rushing at the end of the year to ensure your books are accurate for tax season or audits.

Hire an Experienced Virtual Bookkeeper

Having up-to-date books is crucial because it shows you where your business is financially and what you can do to boost your sales or cut costs. Keeping up-to-date books is the primary task of a bookkeeper, this makes them an invaluable resource for your business. Here are some of the biggest benefits of a virtual Bookkeeper.

1. Up-to-date books – With the help of cloud software like QuickBooks, virtual Bookkeepers can be given online access to your bank statements, receipts, and invoices, allowing them to update your books quickly and without having to wait for paper documents.

2. Accurate financial reporting – use a program like QuickBooks Online or Xero to integrate labour-saving applications like:

  •   Dext Prepare (to capture information on receipts and invoices)
  •   Wagepoint (efficiency in payroll processing)

Using the above-mentioned software lets virtual Bookkeepers spend less time on manual data entry, which improves accuracy.  You will also gain better visibility into your cash flow and business performance via real-time access to your books through a web or mobile app.  This will help you in making better-educated decisions from the monthly financial statements generated by your online Bookkeeper.

Woman working on a laptop

3. Greater flexibility and cost savingsVirtual bookkeeping provides the flexibility to work with accounting professionals outside your geographical area, making it easier to find the right fit for your needs and your budget.  Hiring an in-house Bookkeeper might not be the economical choice in terms of overhead, payroll deduction costs and benefits, and salary. The average salary of an in-house Bookkeeper in Canada varies between $52,000 to $99,480 per year. 

In hiring a virtual Bookkeeper in Canada, you will save thousands of dollars. With VEA, you pay only for the bookkeeping services your business requires. As your transactions or accounting complexity grow, VEA’s virtual Bookkeepers can provide a wider range of expertise and a broader scope of virtual bookkeeping services.  Because virtual Bookkeepers tend to handle a lot of clients at once to make a living, our VEA Bookkeepers have vast amounts of experience.  So, you are not only saving money, but you’re getting a team of efficient Bookkeepers to help you run your business.

4. More time to grow your business – Hiring a virtual Bookkeeper gives you time to focus on your business.  It also means less time to train and manage the in-house Bookkeepers. A virtual Bookkeeper is not part of the staff, eliminating the need to have another person on payroll and benefits. On average, hiring a virtual Bookkeeper will significantly cut your costs of having an in-house Bookkeeper.  

5. Safety – Many people worry about letting their financial information go outside the office. But the fact of the matter is that remote bookkeeping is safe. All your data is placed on secure servers. System admins update their security software very frequently. Your information will be secure and encrypted, to help protect you from any compromising situations.

Keeping information on a secure server also means that it can be shared more securely between people and will be safe from any accidents or issues that stem from computer malfunctions or theft. Your information is much safer on secure servers than on your desktop

6. Additional Benefits – In addition to the great benefits a virtual Bookkeeper already has, is that you will also be able to get rid of the clutter and go paperless. Going paperless can be a daunting task, but having your invoices, contracts, payroll, ledgers, and accounts all available online will save you time, money, and space. Pulling any report, looking at vendors, customer listings, invoices, etc., right on the computer in a matter of seconds. Did you know that on average, paperwork takes up about 50% of space in an office? Maximize the efficiency of your area by getting rid of the clutter and going virtual. You will save money just on the cost of paper and supplies, which reduces overhead costs and maximize your profits. 

Looking for a clear financial picture? Hire an expert.

Conclusion

VEA’s Professional Service can provide you with the virtual bookkeeping and payroll experts you need to keep your business up-to-date, organized, and running as efficiently as possible. Bookkeepers save time & money when the books are accurate and precise, which saves on accountant fees at year-end, which leaves more money in your pocket and ultimately, gives you peace of mind.

Learn more about our virtual Bookkeeping services here