You can work with Associates in one of two ways, or indeed, a combination of both.
Firstly you can retain all the client contact so that he/she never knows that the work they are sending you has been completed by a third party.
The plus side here is that you will never have to worry about unscrupulous associates who may attempt to take the client from you, or underhand clients who think they may save a pound or two if they cut you out of the equation and work directly with your associate.
The downside is there will be inevitable delays as you send work back and forth, and you will have to be not only very aware of every piece of work as you will have to discuss it with the client where necessary, you will have to double check everything that goes out. All this additional admin can become very time consuming.
The second way to work with an associate is to effectively pass the client over to them and allow direct communication.
This frees up much more of your time as all discussions about the tasks performed are direct between the client and the associate. However, do make sure that you have very solid contracts in place with both your associate and your client to prevent them working directly together.
Also bear in mind that associates will not be with you forever so make sure you keep yourself up to speed with the clients account information, that you have access to all their files and the work completed by the associate, and that you maintain a relationship with them have contacting them regularly to check in and see how things are going.
It’s imperative to have an Associate Agreement in place so that everyone understands the boundaries of the relationship. For more information and a selection of templates you can download and adapt for your own virtual assistant business click here.