Many factors influence our decisions in our daily lives, and these decisions, if correct, should make our lives better in short- and long term. Take our careers, for example. Many people – especially entrepreneurs – need an assistant. Still, they can’t decide if they need a personal assistant who will work with them in the office or a virtual assistant who can assist them remotely. Your choice will be heavily influenced by your budget, of course, but it can also be affected by your day-to-day requirements and your office space – simply put, do you have room in your workplace for another person? All of these factors will have a significant impact on your decision. So here’s how to determine if you need a personal assistant or a virtual assistant: factors to consider.

  1. Budget constraints

The first factor influencing your decision on whether or not to get a PA or a virtual assistant is this: can you afford it? If you get a PA, you not only have to think about a competitive salary – you also have to think about sick and holiday leaves, National Insurance, and so on. When you hire a VA, on the other hand, you have more flexibility with them because you only pay them an hourly rate, and you don’t have to deal with holidays or sick leaves. In other words, if your budget is limited or you can’t take on a full-time employee, then your best bet would be to get a virtual assistant rather than a personal one.

  1. Enough space in the office

Whether you work in an office or from home, you have to consider if there is enough space for your assistant. With a personal assistant, you must ensure they have a workstation, computer, telephone line, and the like. With a virtual assistant, you don’t have to worry about all these things – since they work remotely, you can communicate via messenger or email or schedule a weekly call, so they know what you want them to do for the week. Many virtual assistants have the latest software packages, so that’s one less thing for you to worry about.

  1. Technologically savvy

The number one requirement of many who hire a personal or virtual assistant is efficiency. And they can only be as efficient as possible if they are well-trained and have the right experience. For example, it follows that a VA or PA would already know their way around Google Suite or Microsoft Office. But can they manage your social media or business blog? A VA and a PA can be an asset to your company – but this only happens if you find the right person with the right skill sets you need.

Plenty of virtual assistants are managed by an agency or provider, who gives them adequate training and offers a guarantee. Whilst some PAs also have the training, you have to consider specific training if you want them to take care of bookkeeping, for example, or web design.

  1. Are they available?

The last consideration is whether or not they are available when you need them. Whilst your PA is generally there in your workplace, and all you have to do is go to their desk, what if they get sick or are on holiday? Meanwhile, a VA is on-call when there are holidays, and they can be there remotely.