How Many Administrative Assistants Do I Need? [2023 Guide]
Picture this; you’re attending meetings back-to-back, overseeing daily operations, and finding new ways to grow your business. On top of all of these, you still have multiple tasks waiting for you when you return to your desk.
Yes, administrative work is essential, but it can be truly time-consuming. Assuming desk work can take you away from your executive responsibilities. Instead of spending time and energy on routine, time-consuming tasks, why not work with administrative assistants? And if you’re wondering, “How many administrative assistants do I need?” Then keep reading!
What is an Administrative Assistant?
Administrative assistants work on behalf of executives or managers to handle their day-to-day tasks. They provide support in multiple ways, from managing schedules and organizing documents to data entry and other clerical duties. These professionals help you stay organized and on top of your work while freeing up some time for more high-level business decisions and duties.
Almost all companies require administrative assistants or clerical staff. Administrative tasks can be considered routine. But once managers and executives start working with an administrative assistant, they will realize the value administrative positions add to a business.
Read our article on the difference between administrative and executive assistants to see which type of remote assistant you need.
5 Signs You Need an Administrative Assistant
So, how do you know if you and your company need an administrative assistant? Here are five signs you should look out for:
#1 Your Admin Work Takes Up Most of Your Day
Handling executive duties and administrative work yourself is almost impossible, even with excellent time management skills. When you review your daily routine and find that administrative responsibilities dominate your checklist, it’s time to consider hiring an administrative assistant.
#2 You Have a Difficult Time Keeping Up with the Rest of Your Schedule
Are there days when (or anyone from your management team) you find it challenging to keep up with your busy schedule? Your schedule could be too packed with company meetings and other executive duties that you don’t even have time to take a breather or have your lunch break. If administrative duties hinder your other high-level responsibilities, an administrative assistant or assistant can significantly help.
#3 You’re Experiencing Burnout or On the Brink of It
Another tell-tale sign that you need an administrative assistant or two is if you feel like you’re already running on fumes. Don’t wait for your well-being to deteriorate. If administrative tasks take up too much of your valuable energy and bandwidth, it’s time to delegate. Assign low-level, routine tasks to an administrative assistant.
#4 Balancing Responsibilities at Work and in Your Personal Life is a Challenge
As a business owner, it’s natural to be more hands-on. You want your company to grow and help the people in your organization thrive. But it’s important to remember that you must care for your overall well-being to perform well in your position. This includes putting in effort to maintain a balance between work and personal life. You need an administrative assistant with top-notch skills to help you achieve this elusive balance.
#5 You Want Your Business to Grow
Business leaders need to be in the right headspace to grow their company. If you want to expand your business and improve your organization’s performance, you need to free up your desk and mind of time and energy-consuming admin duties. Working with an administrative assistant or two can help you do just that.
Want to know why remote staffing is your best bet for admin tasks? Schedule a free discovery call with our 20four7VA Growth Experts!
What Tasks Can Administrative Assistants Do?
An administrative assistant can take on multiple tasks. They can help executives and business leaders free up more time to do high-level tasks, including exploring growth opportunities.
Depending on their career background and education, an administrative assistant can work on tasks such as:
scheduling executive and staff meetings
- data entry
- managing phone systems
- company event planning
- company staff scheduling support
- calendar management
- office manager tasks
- phone and email support
- onboarding assistance
- reports consolidation
- and other admin assistant tasks
An administrative assistant’s skills and attention to detail make them a great addition to your company. Admin assistants can support business leaders by taking on routine yet time-consuming responsibilities allowing them to focus on growing their company.
Want to know more about the different tasks administrative assistants can do? Read our Virtual Staffing 101 articles or consult our Growth Experts today!
How Many Administrative Assistants Do I Need? A Definitive Guide
By now, you’ve already decided that your business will indeed benefit from hiring an administrative assistant. Now, it’s time for the next step: determining just how many administrative assistants you need. Here are some tips to help you decide:
1. Define the Tasks You Need Help With
It would help if you could list all the daily tasks you and your team members do. Then, identify which administrative tasks don’t need your direct attention and would be better delegated to an administrative assistant. Having this list is important in deciding how many administrative assistants you should hire.
2. Estimate the Time Required Per Task
You must go over your task list and estimate the frequency and time required per task. The total number of admin hours per week can help you decide whether one or more administrative assistants should do the administrative work.
You can decide on the number of admin assistants you need based on the total hours. It can also help you consider whether you need to hire multiple assistants part-time or full-time.
3. Identify Which Tasks Require Advanced or Specialized Skills
Not all administrative responsibilities are the same. Some tasks can be done by an entry-level administrative assistant, while others need one with more experience and specialized skills. For example, database management can be assigned to a newbie administrative assistant. However, report generation and visualization using Power BI or other data analysis tools may require someone with more data analytics experience.
You may need more than one administrative assistant if you need support with a wide range of administrative tasks. One can handle more time-consuming, routine back-office tasks, while the other can handle more complex admin jobs.
4. Review Your Staffing Budget
Hiring any professional, including an administrative assistant, requires financial resources. Even when you know what you need help with and what skills you’re looking for in administrative assistants, your budget will still be a deciding factor.
If you have enough budget to build a team of two to three administrative assistants to handle all your admin tasks, then that’s a great plus. But you may need to prioritize tasks if you have a limited staffing budget for one administrative assistant. Those non-negotiable, usually time-consuming tasks should be the ones they’ll be working on.
5. Consider Hiring Remote Talent
If you want to stretch your staffing budget without sacrificing the quality of work, hiring a virtual assistant (VA) is the way to go. A remote admin assistant can do everything an in-office assistant can at a fraction of the price. Hiring remote workers is a cost-effective staffing solution for businesses looking to increase productivity and growth without bloating overhead costs.
Hiring Remote Administrative Assistants
Getting the right virtual administrative assistant services requires time, energy, and attention to detail. Like filling other job vacancies, business owners or recruitment managers must do their due diligence to get the top talent for the position.
1. Identify the Administrative Assistant Skills You Require
Just like other professions, an administrative assistant position requires the right combination of technical and soft skills. While the final list of administrative assistant skills will highly depend on the actual tasks they will do, it’s important to cover the basics. Make sure your administrative assistant has the following skills:
Basic Computer Proficiency
A remote administrative or executive assistant needs to have, at the very least, basic computer skills to do well at their job. They should confidently navigate the usual computer programs, including Google Workspace and Microsoft Office Suite tools.
Having an administrative assistant with excellent verbal and written communication skills would be best. They must be able to communicate with internal and external clients professionally. Exceptional communication skills enable administrative assistants to present a positive business image and accurately convey critical information to stakeholders.
Business Writing Skills
Writing clear emails, letters, and other documents without spelling or grammar mistakes is a must-have skill. An administrative assistant will communicate on your behalf through emails, advisories, and so on. Their writing will also be a representation of your company. This is why excellent writing skills are required.
Time Management Skills
Administrative assistants must know how to prioritize jobs to ensure they’re on top of their work. Having someone with excellent time management skills can also help you, their client, keep up with your own schedule. They can help you plan your day and manage tasks so that everything gets done in the correct order.
A good administrative assistant must have excellent organizational abilities and attention to detail. They don’t just need these skills for organizational tasks like file management and scheduling meetings. They also need this to ensure projects are on track and nothing slips through the cracks.
Learn more about the top administrative assistant skills you need to look for and other virtual staffing know-how on the 20four7VA blog. Or book a free discovery call for more expert remote staffing tips.
2. Create a Job Listing
Once you’ve narrowed down the tasks you will delegate and the administrative assistant skills you seek, it’s time to craft your job listing. For a more efficient recruitment process, you need to create a thorough job listing which should include the following:
- job title and description
- educational requirements for the position
- required career experience (if applicable)
- work arrangement (part-time, full-time, project-based, etc.)
- details on how to apply
- and other relevant details about the job that candidates may need
3. Kick Off the Recruitment Process by Posting on Job Boards
Once you have a job listing, the next step is to let potential candidates know about the opening. You can post your job listing on your company website and online job boards.
In addition to posting on job boards, look into referrals from friends and networks that can point you to qualified candidates.
But if you want to save even more time and money, consider working with a remote staffing agency to find the right admin or executive assistant for your business.
4. Work with an Experienced Remote Staffing Agency
A top-tier remote staffing company like 20four7VA can make finding remote staffing easier and quicker. We can scour our wide talent pool to find the right remote administrative assistant with the skills needed to help you manage back-office tasks. We also offer end-to-end remote staffing solutions from recruitment and onboarding to payroll processing and performance management.
Need more tips on finding a good personal assistant or administrative assistant?
How to Make the Most Out of Working with Administrative Assistants
When working with remote administrative or executive assistants, you need to put in the effort to build strong working relationships. You may not be literally close in proximity, but it doesn’t mean you won’t need to work closely and collaboratively.
Build a Collaborative Remote Work Environment
Working with a distributed team requires business managers to make an extra effort to make the team feel more connected. It’s crucial to build a collaborative remote work environment. You need to make remote assistants feel that they’re a part of the team just as much as in-office staff members are. You can do this through online collaboration tools and regular check-ins.
Clear expectations, guidelines, and regular communication can foster trust and encourage teamwork despite the physical distance. It’s also essential to establish a sound workflow management system, such as using project management tools like Asana or Trello. This helps you stay on top of your tasks and keeps your administrative assistant informed of their responsibilities and expected timelines.
It is also best to establish a system of regular check-ins, whether weekly or biweekly, to keep everyone on the same page and provide feedback on their work. Maintaining a positive and supportive working relationship can significantly enhance productivity, teamwork, and overall job satisfaction.
Maintain Open Communication Channels
Open communication channels are essential for any distributed team to remain productive and successful. It also helps foster trust between remote workers and their managers by providing a platform where they can ask questions or talk about work concerns. Finally, it enables teams to stay connected even when not physically together.
Administrative assistants with prior work experience will know the ins and outs of their jobs. They are professionals who don’t need constant supervision from a manager. However, it’s still important to regularly communicate with them regardless of their career experience and education. Doing so will help the administrative assistant and the rest of the team build better working relationships.
Prioritize Data Security and Cybersecurity
Today’s technology makes it possible for people from all over the world to come together and collaborate online. It also helps companies build a more diverse and inclusive organization. However, bringing work online can leave your business vulnerable to malicious attacks and opportunistic entities.
Employing cybersecurity measures to protect your organization and clients would be best. Here are some examples of simple yet effective cybersecurity practices:
- Utilize data encryption techniques to protect sensitive information from unauthorized access
- Monitor the online activity of staff members regularly
- Implement two-factor authentication methods where applicable
- Install firewalls and antivirus software
- Implement the use of strong passwords with a combination of letters, numbers, and special characters
- Regularly update all software to the latest version
- Restrict access to sensitive information and systems
- Have an incident response plan in place for potential security breaches
- Periodically do a system check of the tools of every team member (remote or otherwise)
Discover the essential cybersecurity tools every remote team needs. Or schedule a no-obligation discovery call with our Growth Experts to learn how to effectively and securely work with remote talents.
Make Working with Administrative Assistants More Hassle-Free with 20four7VA!
We have helped clients and top executives from nearly every industry across the world find the right virtual assistants.
Why Choose 20four7VA?
20four7VA is a multi-awarded remote staffing agency that has helped more than 2,500 clients grow with cost-effective staffing solutions. Here are some of the reasons why we are the partner of choice of companies across six continents:
Global Talent Pool
You can gain access to our pool of remote professionals. All our remote assistants or VAs passed our meticulous 8-step vetting process. After the consultation call and approved job description, we’ll scour our network to find remote talent with top-notch administrative assistant skills.
Dedicated Client Support
All 20four7VA clients are assigned dedicated account managers. An account manager makes sure all client concerns are addressed promptly and effectively. They also help with VA management to ensure you’re continuously getting your business’s best remote staffing solutions.
End-to-End Staffing Solutions
At 20four7VA, our services don’t stop at finding you the right talent. Our top-notch, end-to-end staffing solutions make remote staffing much easier and hassle-free. Aside from recruitment and onboarding, all 20four7VA clients have access to the following:
- HR Services (payroll processing, time-tracking, etc.)
- IT Helpdesk
- In-house Training for the Remote Assistant
- And more!
Ready to hire a remote administrative assistant or assistants to help you check more administrative activities off your to-do list? Schedule a FREE, no-obligation discovery call with our Growth Experts to learn more!