Question Developing My Services

Stella

New Member
Good Afternoon from the Green Mountain State of VT!

Seeing as though I am in the beginning stages of developing my business, I was seeking some feedback in regards to the services I am planning on providing. Given I have 12 years experience in the field of Human Resources prior to leaving my job several weeks ago, I had originally set out to perform HR consulting services to small businesses who could not substantiate the need for a PT or FT human resource professional. Through several conversations with a friend who was just starting her own small business, we decided I would assist her with some of her administrative functions, and eventually help her on the staff development side. Given this need, I stumbled upon the job description of a VA, without ever even knowing this type of a position existed! It then led me to this forum of wonderful individuals who have discovered the need for this market, except for I believe I am just a little behind in the times :eek:
That being said, I am also in the beginning stages of developing my website which will outline the services I am planning on offering which include Human Resources, Administrative and Social Media Management.
>>>>My question--in your opinion, do you think this is too many different services to offer and should I perhaps consider separating these two niches, or keep them all under one service? On one hand being diversified adds more value for the client, but a client could look at it and think I am not specialized enough in one area, so I would love to hear your thoughts.
Secondly, since the Human Resources services are geared more towards the legal aspect, I was considering pricing my services higher for human resources, and a little bit of a lower rate for the administrative services. Do any of you do that?

Thank you so much your time in reading, and thank you in advance for your input.
 

Your Virtual Wizard

Community Leader
Hi Stella,

I would suggest tying all your services together into special packages. One package is strictly HR services...the next will be HR services with social media upgrades, etc.

Many if not most clients ask for social media services in all industries so you can offer social media for human resource professionals quite easily.

I don't think a client will look at it and say you are not specialized in one area. While the topics may be different when you post for social media for each type of industry, the act of performing social media for HR will be the same.

I would offer packaged services if you can so that clients look at the value you offer.

If you take on an HR client, chances are you will be performing admin services for them within that service package so there is no need to adjust rates.

I offer a social media package for my clients which includes any admin work I am asked to do. I didn't change my rate because I was asked to do research or find some photos.

I would suggest you list all the services you will offer under the HR category. I would include admin services within that package, however, many clients just assume you will be able to do those services anyway. If a client asks for example (just an example) that you will screen resume and applications for a job (HR services), you can suggest placing those candidates in a spread sheet (admin work) which will be billed at your HR rate. It would be too much to bill each service separately.

I wouldn't break services down so much. I think it is more important to list your HR services a package and provide value and a monthly goal so the client can see how working with you is a benefit.

Janine
 

LuzDonahue

VAF Community Leader
I love that you are leveraging the tremendous experience you have for businesses that need this. As always, Janine shined her wisdom ray all over this but I will add my take in hopes that it helps you.

I do not see a need to charge less for the admin services. You have expertise in an area already and I think that in itself makes your services valuable to whoever needs them. Social Media *IS* a specialized service and it requires ongoing learning on your part that is unbillable to your clients so it is fair to charge a good rate for that service, especially if you are helping your clients grow their audience.

I like the idea of having packages that include social media or admin stuff but there is actually a super nice overlap in HR and social media. I actually recently listed to this podcast on the subject not too long ago http://ontherecordpodcast.com/pr/otro/social-media-HR-issues.aspx You have a pretty niche and needed services list with your HR background. I think it's smart to have packages that just include this stuff as added bonuses to the other things you do. Any time you can suggest something that will make their life easier, once you are working with someone it's easier to suggest an add on and they would have no reason to expect that this service would be priced differently. Why undercut yourself? I don't think this is too many services but it is easier to market specialized services since it's easier to get it to 'stick' in people's head that you are their solution for X rather than a solution for X, Y or Z.
 

Stella

New Member
Thank you so much, ladies! That was truly invaluable information you both shared, in addition to the time you took to craft a very thoughtful response. I would not have even considered packing those services together, and had thought to only include the à la carte to the client, so this is helpful.
Realizing there is a learning curve to this process, I understand I'll likely learn from my clients (and fellow VA's) as to what works best, but I sincerely appreciate the feedback and hope you enjoy the rest of your weekends!

PS--Janine, I noticed you are on the Gulf Coast of Florida? My husband and I just moved from upstate NY and are temporarily here in Vermont until next month when we make our move to the southeast coast of Florida!

Stephanie "Stella"
 

Your Virtual Wizard

Community Leader
Hi Stella,

There are a few east coast Florida VAs here. I'm in the Tampa Bay area. Feel free to 'friend' me on Facebook and we can connect there.

You have found the best forum on the planet for VAs. So please feel free to ask anything and many of us will jump in to offer any advice.

Best,

Janine
 
Hi everybody. I hope this is the right thread.

For a long time I struggled with this business and then BOOM!! I know what services I want to offer. I want to be a go-to for families caring for special needs children or aging parents. I'd be helping struggling families find the services they need, helping them find estate attorneys or getting info on local nursing homes, local laws, etc. I'd LOVE to do this kind of service, since I have this sort of background and enjoyed the logistics. Anyone who has cared for an aging parent knows it's a labor of love and it can make one's head spin trying to keep on top of everything. It would almost not feel like work.

Somehow I don't think "virtual assistant" would describe this very well, as it would confuse potential clients. Does anyone have any suggestions what to name myself?

As you know my company is Veteran Office Support Services. That also may be confusing. I will probably end up making this a subsidiary of the business. Can anyone suggest a name for a company that finds services for caregivers? I'd be really grateful.

I can definitely blog about something like this. I know basically what I have to do to get started. YAAAAAY I'M SO HAPPY!! :happydance::applause::D
 

virtualvanecia

New Member
Hmmmm I think that's a great idea. I would just say be careful with providing information and services that could fall into the gray area of giving legal advice. People will need the service you want to provide and you have good intentions. But emotions run high in theses industries and you dont want anyone to claim unauthorized practice of law. Sorry to get off topic, Im still trying to think to a name for you. :)
 

Susankelly

New Member
I think as long as you are careful this could be a great biz. I do think you need a new company name the one you have is confusing vs what you are going to do. I'll think on it however, I know when my sister in law needed information for her mom: lawyers that specialize in elder law, small personal nursing homes, extra care nurses/assistants, services from the state, hospice. She kept saying to me, there is no place around here that can help you with all this info. And she spent weeks/months trying to figure it all out and navigate around it all. So I think your biz has great potential.

Susan
 
Thanks, everybody. Don't worry; my husband being a paralegal, I know all about UPL (unauthorized practice of law). I'll be talking to some attorney friends who can help guide me through that minefield.
 
I would appreciate any help at all. I'm still brushing up on my sciences (I have a medical background) as well as collecting some stats. And that's a big reason I'd like to do this. Taking care of my wheelchair-bound diabetic mother fell into my lap after my dad died of a hear attack during a hurricane. Thanks for reminding me about the emotions. There are also siblings, children and grandchildren.
Next week I'm starting a business development course. Hopefully that will help point me in the right direction.
 

Bikash Kumar

New Member
Good Afternoon from the Green Mountain State of VT!

Seeing as though I am in the beginning stages of developing my business, I was seeking some feedback in regards to the services I am planning on providing. Given I have 12 years experience in the field of Human Resources prior to leaving my job several weeks ago, I had originally set out to perform HR consulting services to small businesses who could not substantiate the need for a PT or FT human resource professional. Through several conversations with a friend who was just starting her own small business, we decided I would assist her with some of her administrative functions, and eventually help her on the staff development side. Given this need, I stumbled upon the job description of a VA, without ever even knowing this type of a position existed! It then led me to this forum of wonderful individuals who have discovered the need for this market, except for I believe I am just a little behind in the times :eek:
That being said, I am also in the beginning stages of developing my website which will outline the services I am planning on offering which include Human Resources, Administrative and Social Media Management.
>>>>My question--in your opinion, do you think this is too many different services to offer and should I perhaps consider separating these two niches, or keep them all under one service? On one hand being diversified adds more value for the client, but a client could look at it and think I am not specialized enough in one area, so I would love to hear your thoughts.
Secondly, since the Human Resources services are geared more towards the legal aspect, I was considering pricing my services higher for human resources, and a little bit of a lower rate for the administrative services. Do any of you do that?


Thank you so much your time in reading, and thank you in advance for your input.
Your Own Dedicated HR Manager
It gives you a dedicated HR manager who helps you craft HR policy and understand compliance
It will work with you to craft your internal HR policies that fit the way you run your business.
Full remote HR support, available to help by phone, email, or chat. Consider us an extension of your team.
This powerful platform lets you onboard, terminate, and take corrective action easily and securely.
It makes sure your business appreciates nuanced wage and hour regulations.
Check it out:-
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Bikash Kumar

New Member
Hi Stella,

I would suggest tying all your services together into special packages. One package is strictly HR services...the next will be HR services with social media upgrades, etc.

Many if not most clients ask for social media services in all industries so you can offer social media for human resource professionals quite easily.

I don't think a client will look at it and say you are not specialized in one area. While the topics may be different when you post for social media for each type of industry, the act of performing social media for HR will be the same.

I would offer packaged services if you can so that clients look at the value you offer.

If you take on an HR client, chances are you will be performing admin services for them within that service package so there is no need to adjust rates.

I offer a social media package for my clients which includes any admin work I am asked to do. I didn't change my rate because I was asked to do research or find some photos.

I would suggest you list all the services you will offer under the HR category. I would include admin services within that package, however, many clients just assume you will be able to do those services anyway. If a client asks for example (just an example) that you will screen resume and applications for a job (HR services), you can suggest placing those candidates in a spread sheet (admin work) which will be billed at your HR rate. It would be too much to bill each service separately.

I wouldn't break services down so much. I think it is more important to list your HR services a package and provide value and a monthly goal so the client can see how working with you is a benefit.

Janine
Your Own Dedicated HR Manager
It gives you a dedicated HR manager who helps you craft HR policy and understand compliance
It will work with you to craft your internal HR policies that fit the way you run your business.
Full remote HR support, available to help by phone, email, or chat. Consider us an extension of your team.
This powerful platform lets you onboard, terminate, and take corrective action easily and securely.
It makes sure your business appreciates nuanced wage and hour regulations.
Check it out:-
https://rb.gy/be6ajn
 
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