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Risk tips for virtual assistants

30/05/2014

Abracadabra! Kenny Louie

Virtually perfect 

If just one unfinished job sneaks through unnoticed, it could cause big problems for your client's business. And for your business too.

Money talks and, if your mistake costs your client, you might find yourself in a pretty awkward conversation.

Virtual assistants' professional indemnity insurance protects your business – and takes care of that awkward conversation for you.

But, as prevention is always better than cure, knowing how to avoid claims in the first place is obviously best. Here are our tips.

Blitz your risk

Different VAs do different things. And some things are riskier than others.

Either way, it's likely you do one or all of these:

  • Diary management has the potential to cause endless muddles. If you manage diaries for more than one client, establish a system so you can't put appointments in the wrong diary. Although in most cases a missed meeting isn't the end of the world, there's always the chance it could cost your client a contract of their own. To avoid such mishaps, always allow ample travelling time around appointments. If in doubt, check with your client before rearranging their schedule.
  • Email management needs careful treatment. Agree from day one which types of emails you can respond to on your client's behalf, and which you should flag up for them to deal with. If there's anything that falls outside the agreed categories, it's best to err on the side of caution and ask your client. Remember, you're not managing your own emails, you're managing someone else's.
  • Typing and note taking can have different risk levels depending on the documents you're working with. For example, a spelling mistake in something like medical and legal transcriptions could, well, spell disaster. If you're doing work you think might be 'high risk', you should ask your insurer that they're happy to cover it. As always, check and double check to make sure your work is accurate before sending it on to anyone else.
  • Marketing and social media is slightly more involved. If you're just setting up social media accounts for your clients, you shouldn't run into too many claim-inducing problems. However, if you're creating blog or social media posts on your client's behalf, be cautious. Before you start, make sure you understand exactly what your client wants you to post. Something that you may find interesting or funny might not reflect their company values or personality. If you can, get your content signed off or formally approved before pressing 'send'.
  • Data inputting shouldn't be too risky, as long you're accurate. Where possible, get your client or a third party to check the data before it needs to be used for any processes or analysis. That way, it shouldn't throw up any erroneous results.

Virtual assistant, real risk

Combine these risk management tips with your professional indemnity insurance and your VA business should be well protected from any potential mishaps.

If you have any questions about insurance, or you're not sure what level of cover to go for, feel free to call one of our helpful advisers on 0345 222 5360.

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