Just joined SVA today and very excited to meet you all and join your group, thank you for having me. I launched my VA business on 1st October, and loving (nearly) every minute of it! Often have moments of great self doubt and think… what am I doing, get a job!.. but generally its been brilliant so far. The only tip I can offer right now to any newbies similar to me is network, network, network… it really does work. Good luck all, may the force be with us
Great that you’ve been out and talking to people about your business - have you picked up any clients yet?
Lovely to hear from you. I have picked up 4 clients very surprisingly considering I only made the decision to go it alone on the 1st October. They’re all very small jobs currently but keeping me ticking over. I have a Will writer, an accountant and a property developer all on a 2hr per week retainer and another I write transcripts for on an ad hoc basis. So basically only 6 hours guaranteed work a week but that’s fine for now, has boosted my confidence. I’m also expecting a call from another potential client very shortly who I met last week. I’m booked in to 5 networking events this week where hopefully I’ll grab another but also studying with the Digital Marketing Institute as social media is my weakness, so happy to stay reasonably quiet for December when I hope to get some serious studying in. Whilst you’re here, may I ask… I’m currently charging £25 an hour to which I’m told is massively undercharging/undervaluing myself and that I should increase it to £30 per hour at least… “they’re paying for 25 years of experience and not just that one hour of work”…I keep getting told. I just wondered what you thought and how much you charge? if you don’t mind me asking.
All the best to you and thanks for dropping me a line.
£25 is the average (mean and mode) for UK VAs. That’s taken from UK VA Survey v10 - it’s the biggest study of UK VAs, it’s also the only statistically valid study we have of the industry - because HMRC doesn’t carry a “virtual assistant” definition. You may well be able to charge more, depending on the kinds of clients you are targeting and the kind of work you do…
Basically when it comes to rates, I always say this:
It doesn’t matter what rate you charge, as long as your clients see the VALUE in what they are getting.
If you charge £30 and another VA charges £25, your client/prospect has to see why you are worth the extra £5 an hour… Does that mean you can do things faster? Does it mean they are getting better quality? Does it mean they are getting better service? It’s good to do your own thing but it’s also good to be aware of what your clients are thinking when they compare different services.
Thanks so much for taking the time to come back to me, I really appreciate it. All very useful advice.