Employees vs Virtual Assistants

Link A VA
3 min readNov 2, 2020


05 November 2020

Employees vs Virtual Assistant

Now that you are familiar with what a Virtual Assistant is and what they can do for you, let’s explore the differences between a permanent employee and freelance, virtual assistant. At the end of this article, you should have a clear idea of what will work best for you and your business.

It’s not a secret anymore- if you want your business to grow rapidly, hiring a Virtual Assistant to manage a part of your workload is a smart move. Today, Virtual Assistants handle more than your typical administrative tasks. There are Virtual Assistants who do admin work, but some can do much more specialised work like social media managing, coding or bookkeeping.

There are several factors that separate a permanent employee from a Virtual Assistant — the main one being cost.

Let’s keep this simple and focus on an administrator. On average, according to Payscale, a full-time office administrator can earn up to R119,157 per year whereas a virtual assistant may only cost you, the employer, R50,000 per year, dependent on their rate.

Why is there such a huge discrepancy in annual cost? Well, the answer is simple. When hiring a full-time employee, there are other expenses you must pay in addition to their actual salary. As an employer of a full-time individual, you are responsible for the following additional expenses:

● Taxes

● Paid vacations

● Paid sick time

● Payroll costs

● Office expenses

● Office equipment

On the flip side, when you hire a Virtual Assistant, you are only responsible for paying for the actual hours worked and/or the project rate agreed upon. Virtual Assistants usually provide tracking for hours they work. Because Virtual Assistants work from a remote location, they provide their own equipment so that’s at no cost to you, an extra bonus.

Another two factors to consider when comparing full-time employees to Virtual Assistants are productivity and efficiency.

As the workplace evolves, employers have additional training costs. This is in an effort to ensure that all their employees are competent enough to do the necessary tasks.

This is where having a Virtual Assistant is a huge win for you as the employer. Choose a Virtual Assistant based on their experience and expertise — they already know how to do the jobs you need to be done, all you have to do is show them your particular methods and desired outcomes. This greatly reduces training time and cost.

The last, but certainly not the less important factor to consider is flexibility.

When you hire a full-time employee, they work the set hours as per their contract. There is very little leeway for more or fewer hours based on your volume of work. This means that if you have a massive project that would require a full-time employee to work a few more hours, it’s going to cost you a pretty penny. However, with a Virtual Assistant, they work flexible hours, often based on task deadlines rather than set hours.

The Virtual Assistant vs. full-time employee debate can only be solved by figuring out the specific services your business needs. Budgetary concerns are also a critical factor to consider as hiring a Virtual Assistant may save you lots of money. As an employer, you have to find the balance between how much you can afford and what the company’s long term and short-term needs and goals are. At the end of the day, you need to do what’s best for your business and considering the above factors should help you decide what would be a better fit for you and your company.

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