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  • Ann-Marie Farquharson-Clarke


Updated: Apr 6

It is quite common during the onboarding process for individuals to feel uncertain about the responsibilities and tasks associated with their new job. However, having an understanding of what to do, and how to do it, helps to provide clarity, which sets up everyone involved for success.

Key Performance Indicators, or KPIs, are widely used to measure success within an organisation, and are thus, one of the most vital aspects of business performance.

It is important to note that in order for KPIs to be effective, goals should be set using the S.M.A.R.T. method (Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Relevant and Time-based).

What are KPIs and why are they important?

KPIs are the strategies used to channel performance. They are quantifiable goals that help you to track and measure success, and are therefore vital in achieving those goals.

KPIs measure how well a company is achieving the goals and objectives it set out to accomplish. Setting clear goals is crucial to the success of any business. In addition, everyone must be able to see how their actions contribute to the overall objective.

KPIs can be set for both operational as well as strategic goals. However different, the two must be aligned in order for success to be attainable.

Let’s say a company decides to use the services of a Virtual Assistant (VA), similar to in-house staff, the VA must understand the company's goals and how their work contributes to its overall success. Monitoring of VAs is very different from that of in-person employees and can become more of a headache rather than a convenience, if not planned properly.

KPIs give you a better scope of your VAs productivity.They allow you to evaluate the impact their work has on your business, deciding whether or not this is a worthwhile investment.

Having KPIs that are specific to each company goal is necessary for everyone to operate at their best. You are able to measure progress in the short-term and long-term, make adjustments where necessary, problem-solve, as well as maximize on opportunities.

Hiring a VA is an investment for your business and therefore you need the right systems in place in order to be as profitable as possible.

How to create and track KPIs for your VA.

Being able to measure your goals will help your business determine what works and what does not. It is also a good way of defining both short-term and long-term objectives. When it comes to creating and tracking KPIs for VAs, the same principles must be followed as that of your company’s main goal. Metrics used in your KPIs must match each goal you want to achieve.

Here are 3 things to consider when creating KPIs for your VA:

Efficiency -The fact that your VA works outside the office makes it more challenging to measure competency. KPIs are a great way to encourage continuous input. The team camaraderie is missing in this scenario, as the nature of the VA role is to work remotely. Whereas employees in an office can rely on one another, and real-time or face-to-face communication, VAs have to lean on electronic communication. Having KPIs to clearly outline the end goals and how to achieve them, will assist with the lack of real-time interaction, hence improving efficiency.

Reliability - Having a VA who is responsible and reliable is crucial. Even though they work independently, work must be aligned with overall objectives. KPIs make this very much attainable. With this in mind, certain checkpoints have to be put in place. VAs must adhere to deadlines and maintain a particular standard of work. These must be clearly stated when creating KPIs.

Productivity - a VA's main goal is to free up your time, by tackling time-consuming tasks, allowing you to focus on areas which generate revenue. It is important that VAs fit right into the prevailing work culture (group dynamics). One effective way of ensuring this is through the use of KPIs. KPIs provide clear communication on what should be done, making it easy to track strengths and weaknesses, giving you the ability to examine areas at which your VA excels and areas in need of improvement.

Creating KPIs for your business goals will help with understanding what works and what does not, helping you to focus your time and energy on areas where you can effect change.

Tell us in the comments if you found this information helpful.

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