It’s funny how this all started.
Eight years ago, I had moved to the Philippines to set up an analytics training company. It took a few years, but we were quite successful in becoming THE name brand in analytics training in not just the Philippines but across Southeast Asia.
While in the midst of getting the business established, I got a request from a friend of a friend to help them do some outsourcing. Specifically, the requirement was to set up a team of six SEO keywording specialists to tag images on an online auction site. I shook my network and we quickly set up the team and they dove in.
We were so successful that we quickly expanded the team to 12, added a graphic designer and an e-mail marketer. All home-based workers. The client was so happy, we just kept adding. To the point where we quickly had over 30 employees on the account.
There were two things we did that made a difference. So much of a difference that are attrition has been under 10% year of year ever since. In the outsourcing industry, that is unheard of. And for home-based work, where most people work as freelancers, the “ghosting” rate is so high that it’s basically a 50/50 craps shoot if you get a good person.
So, the first of the two difference makes is the talent pool. This is true of VAs as whole, but for me it’s my secret sauce. Most of my employees, and just about all of the leadership team are stay at home moms who used to work in the call center industry. They have good English; they have worked within an American business model and they are used to structure. They also have a big incentive to work hard to provide for the family and be there every day for their kids.
The other big difference? You may have noticed I refer to my team as employees. They are exactly that. Most VA services that are work from home jobs can be kinda shady. Low paying, no benefits, inconsistent workload, poor communication loop with clients are common. By employing talent full time, paying a competitive wage, with all the benefits and perks of an office job, and following local labor laws, my team really values their job.
Here is a testamonial from one of my team, Liza, who has been with us for 6 years.
“I find working at home very practical and convenient in terms of travel. No traffic to waste time on, this is quality time spent with the family or errands. No need for expensive clothes to wear nor uniforms to iron every day. Food is easily accessible and if you have children, no need to hire a maid just to take care of them and the household chores. Homebased jobs also make working safer and more efficient. Invaluable gave me the chance to be valuable again in the comfort of my own home. There really is no place like home.”
And that is what makes being a Virtual Assistant with Sonic Analytics special.
Daniel Meyer heads Sonic Analytics, an analytics firm with offices in Manila, the San Francisco Bay Area and Ocala, FL. With over 20 years in Big Data, Dan is one of the most sought-after public speakers in Asia and offers big data coaching and analytics training seminars on both sides of the Pacific. Dan has also recently joined the Powerteam International family as a small business analytics resource speaker.
Sonic Analytics(www.sonicanalytics.com) brings virtual staffing and big data analytics solutions like business intelligence, business dashboards and data storytelling to small and medium sized organizations looking to enhance their data-driven decision-making capabilities. We also advocate the use of analytics for civic responsibility through training, consulting and education.
As citizens of this great democracy, we need to look at the data (analytics), plan a course of action (strategy) and share our data-driven viewpoints (presentation). This approach to a data savvy work force starts in school. So, we started an internship program to empower our youth to use Analytics, plan Strategy and Present their insights… ASP!
When not training current and future analysts, you can find Dan championing the use of analytics to empower data-driven citizenship by volunteering his expertise with schools and non-profits dedicated to evidence-based social progress like Saint Leo University’s Women in STEAM 2020 Conference.