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This crisis is going to force short-term rental operators to professionalize.

Airbnb side-hustle operators are going to struggle. They may decide to get serious with their vacation rental business plans

But a plan won’t do you much good if you can’t get out of the weeds.

This post will tell you how to find a virtual assistant to help you grow your short-term rental business.

One of our STRPA Inner Circle members gave us a live training on how she does this in her business. She runs over 100 units and works only 2 hours a week in her business.

Watch the full training in the STRPA Inner Circle

Let’s start with the basics.

What is a virtual assistant?

A VA is a virtual assistant. Usually, it's someone who lives in a country where the cost of living and wages are much lower than at home. 

So, instead of hiring someone locally for $25 an hour, you can hire someone in the Philippines and pay $5 an hour

You can hire that person to take over tasks that YOU currently perform. That way, you'll have more time to work ON your business instead of IN your business

You’d be surprised how many tasks can be performed online these days, if you provide the right training.

Some obvious tasks that you can outsource are:

  • Messaging guests
  • Creating and updating your listings 
  • Creating an online guidebook 
  • Adjusting prices 
  • Posting on social media 
  • Managing calendars

Even things like scheduling cleanings, keeping track of inventory and maintenance can be done remotely. 

virtual assistants for vacation rental business

Even things like scheduling cleanings, keeping track of inventory and maintenance can be done remotely. 

It all comes down to two things: 

  1. Finding and hiring the right VA. 
  2. Creating a system to educate your VA on how to perform all tasks.

How to find the right virtual assistant for your short-term rental business

There is no wrong place to find a virtual assistant, it depends on your goals and resources. Some options are:

  • Craigslist
  • ODesk
  • Elance
  • Bestjobs.ph
  • Virtual Staff Finder
  • Fiverr
  • TaskRabbit
  • Upwork

This list is not exhaustive.

Project-based virtual assistants for your vacation rental

Project-based virtual assistants work on specific tasks instead of taking on responsibilities. For example, you might need to migrate data from one PMS system into another. This is a task instead of a responsibility like managing social media.

virtual assistants for short-term rental business

Rebecca giving her full presentation inside the STRPA Inner Circle

This is the right job to assign to someone you find on Fiverr, Craiglist or TaskRabbit for pretty cheap.

Do not expect them to know what to do. You’ll need to provide crystal clear instructions on how to get the task done. 

Responsibility-based virtual assistants

Having virtual assistants work full-time or part-time for you is what Rebecca does. But it depends on your business.

They learn your systems and begin to work more efficiently. If you’re building a brand, this might be the better way to go.

For this, Rebecca recommends Virtual Staff Finder, because they do the HR work for you.

Why is Virtual Staff Finder better?

When you’re looking for your own VAs, you become an HR department. 

That means:

  • Looking through applications
  • Sifting through different resumes, and
  • Going through all the different things that you’re looking for in your company.

Virtual staff finder is like a headhunter agency for your short-term rental business

You tell them a very clear job description, rate, and hours we want them to work, and what your expectations are.

They give back 3 different candidates

From them you get the resume - they’ve already looked through their community. 

They connect the business owner with the person that best suits their needs. 

If you need someone who answers phones - they give you an audio clip of their voice.

They even provide a DISC assessment, which is a widely used personality assessment test, to make sure they best fit your team.  

Finally, they give you values index, references, all of which makes it much easier to hire them.

If you’ve never tried to hire somebody, it can take hours or weeks to hire them.

It’s saving time and it’s connecting us with the best people for that job. As you go through it a lot of people start to look the same. Unless you’re trained in it, that process is grueling. If you put something out there, especially now when a lot of people are looking for work, you can get 100s if not 1000s of resumes. Just to read through the resumes is exhausting, then you have to look through all the resources and references. Finally, how could you know if they’re a good fit? 

Enter your text here...

Rebecca Slivka

Pillow & Coffee

Virtual Staff Finders provides 3 excellent candidates. You save time and start working.


This is a much easier faster way to do it. The price of virtual staff finder is $500 and you get 3 candidates.


If none of them work for you, you send them back and they give you a new batch.

The awesome thing is that it’s a 1-time cost. It’s not $500 per candidate. It’s $500 total - you can hire one person or the 3 and the price stays the same.


There are so many VAs in the world - it’s hard to know how to hire


One of the biggest challenges with hiring a VA is that there are thousands, if not more, VAs available online.


When short-term rental business owners start hiring VAs, they often think they can throw the job on UpWork and find someone quickly.


But it takes a long time to go through applications and interviews.


As you go through it, all the applications start to look the same.


Unless you’re trained in HR, the process is grueling.


Today, if you put out a job - especially now when a lot of people are looking for work you can get 100s if not 1000s of applications.


You have to look through all the resources and references, and they might not even be a good fit.


How could you know?


With Virtual Staff Finder, you just tell them what you’re looking for. If you feel like you’re really good at hiring - then one of the other websites mentioned above might work fine for you.


There’s no right or wrong way. This was much easier for Rebecca’s company, because she wanted to focus on getting started and moving forward.


Building systems for hiring VAs


Rebecca doesn’t use Virtual Staff Finder anymore.

 

Now, she gets referrals from her team members. 


Everyone on her team is solid, but she does have some people that are stronger than the others. 


Now, whenever she’s looking for another position, she reaches out to one of her top virtual assistants and tells them what they’re looking for.


Her staff already understands what they need, what their values are, how they work, and most importantly - what skillsets are needed.


The past 4 people she’s hired have been through referrals and not through an agency. 


And they’ve been excellent. 


“Our team knows how we work, what kind of training we give, they understand our pay schedule and they’ll be working with this person too and they see who would fit with our company” she told us in the training.


Moving your business forward

There's two vital ingredients in building your short-term rental business. That's finding the right people to help you and having solid systems in place.


You should start by being clear about your goals and where you need help. You can’t hire until this is clear.


Then you can use an agency to help you find the right people.


As your staff grows and they understand your business, you can start having your team help you find the next hires.


Are you growing your short-term rental business?

Watch the full training in the STRPA Inner Circle

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