Having a partner, an assistant or a coordinator is essential to a sales business. Having someone who can handle things back at the office while you are in meetings means that your focus can be on your client and his needs.

While a number of administrative tasks can be evaluated almost immediately – phones are being answered, emails are being sent – there are quite a few things that you have to trust are getting done. That’s why hiring virtual assistance can be so scary…how do you really know what you’re getting if it’s not there in front of you?

Setting up a system for reporting can help eliminate most of these headaches. Consider some of these suggestions for making sure your assistant is on track.

Talk Daily

This should go without saying, but let’s face it…who among us hasn’t come into the office in the morning, sat down and started immediately on the day’s tasks, only looking up because of a growling stomach hours after lunch time?

Set aside time to talk – whether it’s a 15-minute phone call, a cup of coffee in the reception area or a formal meeting in the conference room, make sure that you and your assistant are discussing what has been done, what needs to be done and what’s on deck for the day.

Customer Relationship Management
Make sure that all your employees have unique access to your CRM database and that every client touch is recorded in it. Spot check the data intermittently to ensure that notes and input are accurate.

Set Up Shared Tasks
Using a shared task management system can help keep the communication flowing. Assigning tasks to your employees will allow them the flexibility to handle it on their own while you are able to see updates and keep an eye on the office’s day-to-day operations.

Create Regular Reporting
Set up regular times to talk with your partners to get updates on projects and to-dos. Request reports on what has been done so that follow up tasks can be assigned or set up your CRM to report these things to you automatically weekly. Reporting protocols keep everyone on track while also encouraging accountability.

The ESA Advantage
Executive Scheduling Associates puts great emphasis on reporting. There’s a lot that can be missed in a virtual world, which is why we have set up standardized daily reporting procedures which are closely monitored by our account managers. After a dial session, schedulers report their activities through our proprietary software and reports are reviewed regularly for any anomalous information.

Each ESA client receives a custom-built database from which his scheduler will note every time a call or email is made. Team leaders and executive management have access to all of the database and perform regular spot-checks to ensure quality and accuracy.

ESA schedulers also record every conversation they have with their clients in that client’s database. Goals, projects, and updates are clearly noted and defined using our standardized noting system, ensuring that, in the event of an emergency, management can jump into a database and know exactly what needs to be done and how.

Finally, ESA clients receive a report at the end of every week, detailing their scheduler's activity and progress.

Hiring someone virtually doesn’t have to be a great unknown. A simple set of rules and reporting protocols can help keep you and your office running smoothly while creating an environment of trust and accountability.

What kinds of reporting tools does your business use to stay on track? Tell us in the comments below.

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