How to Hire the Right Personal Assistant: 8 Important Questions to Ask
Image Source: Freepik
Whether you are a first-time entrepreneur trying to get a startup off the ground or you are a seasoned business owner with multiple successful companies under your belt, running an organization isn’t a one-person job. And, having a skilled, like-minded personal assistant by your side can be invaluable.
But while the market isn’t short of experienced PAs, finding the right person to propel your company into a thriving future isn’t easy. Asking the questions below during the hiring process can help.
What Experience Do You Have as a PA?
PAs play a vital role in helping build a bridge between employees and employers, manage day-to-day tasks, improve customer relationships, and ensure that new projects run smoothly. Because of the high level of responsibility PAs deal with on a daily basis, investigating the experience of a candidate is essential.
Do You Have Experience Working in a Specific Niche?
According to statistics by Zippia, today, there are nearly 41,000 personal assistants operating in the US. But while you won’t struggle to find an experienced PA, not all candidates will have experience in the field your company operates in.
Pro tip – Applicants with limited experience as a PA but with a thorough knowledge of the market niche your company operates in may be just as valid candidates!
What Are Your Salary Expectations?
PAs are invaluable to any growing company, but adding an extra full-time employee to your team can weigh on your budget. On the other hand, highly qualified professionals will be seeking a salary in line with industry standards.
So, although the average annual income for PAs in the US stands at nearly $40,000, be sure to research your local market and offer adequate benefits. Then, during the recruitment process, take time to understand what a candidate’s expectations are, both in terms of salary and schedule, and make sure they match yours.
What Type of Tasks Do You Handle?
During any given day at work, PAs are responsible for a wide range of tasks, from administrative duties to customer-facing jobs. So, if you are looking to hire a Personal Assistant, it is important to be clear about what tasks you’ll need him or her to manage and what projects they are able to handle.
A great way to find the perfect match for your company’s needs is to create an accurate job description and investigate a candidate’s experience in different areas.
Don’t be put off by the lack of experience in a certain aspect, though! Instead, look for a candidate’s ability to learn, think outside the box, and tackle new problems.
Can You Evaluate Your Greatest Strengths and Weaknesses?
Even the most experienced candidate will have strengths and weaknesses, and it is crucial for PAs to be aware of them. So, during the screening process, don’t forget to ask candidates how they have been putting their strong suits to use and how they have managed the areas that need improvement in the past.
Do You Feel Confident Handling Tasks Remotely?
The advent of hybrid work models has drastically changed how companies operate. So, no matter whether you are running a fully-digital startup or you are embracing remote work in your brick-and-mortar business, it might be essential for your PAs to be able to work remotely.
That is why, during the interview process, you should consider investigating whether a candidate has experience working as a virtual PA and what their tech skills are. Generally, a good understanding of CRM software and collaboration platforms is enough to get started!
What Are Your Career and Personal Goals?
The right PA is likely to stay in your company for years, and experience future developments first-hand. So, for hiring managers and business owners, it is important to look beyond their current needs and find a Personal Assistant whose long-term goals align with their own.
What Makes You a Great Match for This Company?
Although this question is asked during nearly all interviews or hiring processes, it is one not to be underestimated. Listen carefully to your applicants’ answers to find a person who, beyond their experience and hard skills, will bring the right human capital to your company.