How to Know When to Hire an Online Business Manager
Owning a small business often means doing most of the work alone. However, it is not easy to manage all the administrative and customer service tasks by yourself. If you are exhausted and realize you need help, then consider hiring an online business manager.
What Is an Online Business Manager?
An online business manager, also called an OBM, is a person who supports your business and helps it run smoothly while working virtually. Although their tasks may vary, OBMs usually take over many of the management duties that a business owner does not have time to do. Owners who feel overwhelmed or who notice their growth has stalled can delegate assignments to the online business manager while focusing on other things, such as business expansion.
Lacking the Right Skills and Experience
As you consider hiring an online business manager, you may want to think about the skills that you lack and another person can bring to your company. Many OBMs have business degrees and experience managing other workers. They may also have finance, marketing, human resources, data research and administrative experience. If you do not have these skills, hiring someone who does can benefit your business.
According to Maryville University, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics expects 632,400 jobs to be open in business and finance in the next five years, so students are flocking to these career paths in anticipation of the demand. This means it will be easier to find an experienced OBM for your business.
Drowning in Work
Business owners need time to work on their business and not just in their business. If you are drowning under a stream of emails, phone calls, customer service complaints and other tasks, then you never have time to plan or create anything of value. You have become an administrative assistant who is simply trying to keep up with the flood of work.
A good way to examine if you are spending too much time on tasks that an OBM could do is to look at your schedule. If you are already using a paper or online tool, then pick a week that feels typical and evaluate it closely. If you do not have these tools, put all of your tasks into an online scheduling app like Calendly. Next, write down everything you do for one week. Make sure you include all the phone calls, number of emails sent and other small tasks that add up.
After one week, look at the full schedule and see how many of those tasks were necessary for you to do and how many of them prevented you from doing something else that was more important. A large number of boring, repetitive or easy tasks means it is time to hire an online business manager to do them.
Upset Customers and Angry Employees
When business owners have too much to do and do not delegate, it can lead to upset customers and angry employees. Everyone feels entitled to your attention, but you cannot give it to them. One way to check if it is time to hire an online business manager is to have customers and employees fill out surveys about their experiences with your company.
Pay attention to the survey results and look for patterns. Are customers complaining about slow responses to questions and problems? Do employees feel like you never talk to them or appreciate them? An online business manager can help you with people management and make sure that everyone is satisfied.
Sometimes business owners need an outside perspective or better systems to grow their companies. If you notice that you are not able to reach the goals you set, it may be time to hire an OBM. An online business manager can look at your company objectively and produce systems to streamline everything. They can automate responses to customers that still feel personal, create employee appreciation days and manage projects better.
Hiring more people may be the key to help your company and increase revenue. An online business manager can help you outsource and hire more workers. They can handle the entire process from advertising jobs to interviewing candidates, so you can focus on other things and are not stuck reviewing hundreds of applications. OBMs can even create employee handbooks to onboard new hires.
Preparing for Changes
Who will run your company if you get sick or need to travel for business? How will you handle tasks if you decide to take a long vacation? An online business manager can handle all of this and let you rest or take care of yourself. Eventually, you have to learn how to delegate and let go of the tiny details. Hiring an OBM is the first step to growing your business and finding more time.