The Evolution of Assistance: How Remote Executive Assistants Are Changing the Game

by | Jul 26, 2023 | Blog, LifeSquire Connect

Remote work is more prevalent than ever. And with this, comes an increase in remote executive assistant jobs.

An executive assistant was customarily an office-based job. Assistants once needed to sit at a desk outside their boss’s office, ready for their supervisor to call when needed.

The shift toward remote work during and since the COVID-19 pandemic has shown that a remote executive assistant can be just as effective as an office-based assistant. All it takes is a little extra strategizing to boost remote work effectiveness.

In this post, we’ll run through what to expect from remote executive assistant jobs. This overview includes why you should hire a remote executive assistant and how to get the most out of working together.

Why Hire a Remote Executive Assistant?

The pandemic triggered the move to remote work, but it’s likely a change that’s here to stay. Experts predict that, by 2025, 36.2 million Americans will work remotely. It’s an 87% increase from pre-pandemic levels. Executive assistant roles are no exception. Below are just some reasons you should hire a remote executive assistant.

A Larger Talent Pool

Hiring a remote assistant opens up the talent pool you can source from. You’re no longer restricted by geography as you would be with an in-house assistant. Instead, you can find the perfect executive assistant with the specialized skills to suit your company’s needs. It doesn’t matter where that person lives. 

This newfound access to top talent is particularly beneficial for companies in smaller towns and cities where the local talent pool may be more limited.

Productivity Increase

A remote executive assistant also may be more productive than an in-house assistant. More than half of employees say they’re more productive when working remotely.

Reasons for increased productivity with remote work include:

  • Elimination of Workplace Distractions. Businesses lose $600 billion a year because of workplace distractions. Remote work eliminates distractions such as background noise, interruptions by colleagues, and non-essential meetings.
  • No Workplace Politics. Not being in an office environment dramatically decreases workplace politics. As a result, your assistant can focus on important work-related tasks instead.
  • Comfortable Workspace. Working in a comfortable home environment in casual clothing can also help contribute to greater productivity.

Fewer unscheduled absences

Organizations with remote workers have a 63% reduction in unscheduled absences. Remote workers don’t have concerns like a flat tire on the way to work. They also don’t need to take an entire day off for things like a personal errand or home maintenance appointment. Instead, remote workers blend personal errands with professional work, making them more productive overall.  

No Commuting

Remote workers are more likely to voluntarily log more working hours each week than their on-site counterparts. One of the primary reasons for this is the removal of the daily commute. The average commute is 30 minutes each way. Thus, remote work saves employees a whopping seven hours every week.

Eliminating long commuting times also leads to happier and more satisfied employees. And a happy executive assistant makes for a happy executive!

More Engaged Employees

Despite often working longer hours, remote workers tend to be more engaged with their job. Gallup found that remote workers are more engaged (32%) than employees who work on-site (28%). They also tend to feel more connected to their company and feel like managers listen to their ideas.

Cost Savings

Hiring a remote executive assistant can save you money. By hiring remotely, you eliminate the office-related expenses of adding a new employee. These expenses include those for a workspace, office supplies, utilities, parking, and other on-site amenities.

Improved Mental Health

Perhaps most importantly, the flexibility of remote jobs can breed positive mental health.

Removing the daily commute and allowing more flexible work hours can create a better work-life balance. As a result, your employees have extra time to spend with family, get a good night’s sleep, exercise, and catch up on tasks around the house.

The flexibility of remote work can reduce stress and lead to a happier, healthier, and more satisfied executive assistant.

A remote executive assistant works at her desk.

What to Expect from Remote Executive Assistant Jobs

There are countless benefits of remote executive assistant jobs. But hiring remotely also comes with unique challenges. 

Working effectively with your remote executive assistant requires new strategies, processes, and communication methods. It’s no longer as simple as poking your head around the corner and asking for help. Below are some things to expect from your remote executive assistant.

Regular Check-Ins

While it’s important not to micro-manage, regular communication is the key to success. Scheduling check-ins, such as a quick call each morning, will help keep you on the same page. Identify which communication method works best for you, and schedule regular catch-ups. Regular open communication with each other is vital.

Living By a Calendar

Living by a calendar is an integral part of working with a remote executive assistant. A well-organized calendar will ensure you’re both aware of all upcoming deadlines and meetings. It will guarantee that you don’t miss anything important.

Anticipating Things in Advance

A remote executive assistant’s job is to anticipate your needs and make your life easier. But for them to do this, you will also need to help them out, especially at first.

Help your remote assistant anticipate your needs by: 

  • Making your expectations, vision, and long-term goals clear from the start
  • Helping them know which tasks to prioritize
  • Anticipating any extra help, tools, or training they might need
  • Identifying problems early on

Maintain Boundaries

Remote workers do tend to work longer hours than their on-site counterparts. At home, it’s easy to work non-stop. However, it’s still important to maintain boundaries with your remote executive assistant.

Don’t expect your remote executive assistant to be available on weekends or evenings, even if you’re working. They need to have their downtime too.

An executive assistant also should set boundaries, including when they’re available and how best to contact them. Their boss should respect these boundaries around work.

How LifeSquire Can Help You Find A Remote Executive Assistant

Hiring the ideal remote executive assistant for your business can be a difficult task, especially with a large talent pool to choose from. Fortunately, LifeSquire Connect is here to simplify the executive assistant hiring process. We take the stress out of recruiting by helping find, interview, and train the perfect remote assistant to meet your individual needs. Contact us for more information about our executive assistant recruiting services.

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