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IYOTSA 2014: Job descriptions and titles

As part of the International Year of the Secretary/Assistant 2014, participating organisations are developing themes for their members in order to raise awareness of Secretaries and Assistants throughout the world… This month is:

Job descriptions and titles

Your job description should reflect where you are in your professional development; your job title should reflect where you are in your career. – Ana-Maria Valente

Now as Virtual Assistants, we may feel we’ve left the corporate world behind and that job descriptions are a thing of the past – not so!

Let’s say you are looking to partner with another VA to take overflow work when you are busy… Do you rely simply on knowing them through networking? How do you know if their work is any good? In essence: What are the rules of the game?  You need to write a job description…

Admittedly in the past, I’ve been a bit lax about this myself.  I’ve thought “Ah it’ll be okay” or “Oh look, there’s a CV in and I have a job that needs doing – that’ll do fine”.  Except it hardly ever is fine because I haven’t looked at who is right for the job but simply looked for the person standing in closest proximity!

Writing the description focuses your mind on what is really important about the job and what would be quite nice to have… Working without one is a bit like looking for a house without knowing how many bedrooms you need, what your budget is or where you want to be located!

See also  Do you know a FANTASTIC virtual assistant?

For clients, I would always recommend that they do this… Often you’ll find that the VA they are searching for is completely mythical – they should be available 24:7, type at 125 WPM, be an SEO guru, and well versed in their own industry too.  But what they forget is that by hiring a VA, you aren’t looking for all those qualities in one person – you can hire 10 people who all do different specialised jobs and who aren’t limited to just 24 hours in the day.

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