Subcontracting A Perfect Part Time Gig

Running A Home Business & Working Full Time Outside Your Home

Very few people will claim they are bringing enough money home to meet all their needs and wants. Several will begin a home business to supplement their income while remaining at the full time job outside. This can take a toll on the personal life as well as the health of just about anyone running a home business and working full time outside the home.

One of the first considerations should be is the home business in conflict with the full time job as many employers will not tolerate competition from one of their employees. For example, a person working in a retail environment in nearly any capacity may find themselves in conflict with company policies if they begin an online retail outlet. Or someone working for a carpet cleaning company starting a home business offering cleaning services part time as a home business. Being in conflict often forces the employee to make a choice of keeping their full time job or finding work elsewhere.

There are many home business opportunities available that will not conflict with outside work environments, but the time involved in operating the home business will need to examined to determine if it can be done effectively while working full time. The business operator will only have limited availability as well as time to spend on the business and the time needed to run the business will have to be reallocated from another part of the day.

A person with a family will need to know that any time needed to run the home business will have to come from time usually used for family functions or just spending time with the wife and kids. The full time employer will not tolerate someone spending time on their home business while being paid so dividing the time between work, running the business and family may or may not be worth the extra income from a home business.

In some cases, there are home business opportunities that require little time and enable it to be run at the convenience of the owner. With these jobs time can be arranged in which to run the business without losing time with family and friends, although sacrificing sleep or relaxation time may be necessary. Overall, there will be some sacrifice of time and personal involvement when running a business and working full time outside the home.

Time management will be essential in creating work-life balance as well as remaining organized so as not to allow important aspects of work, home business operation and family slip through the cracks. A single schedule guiding the commitments for all obligations will be needed in order to accomplish everything that needs done and to stay ahead of the work.


Exactly What You Need – An RFP

Send a Job (RFP) directly to our Virtual Assistant Job Board

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A Request for Proposal (RFP) is something you write when you are looking for a company to complete a project for you.

There are many benefits to writing an RFP you should know before you begin.  The primary purpose of an RFP is to inform subcontractors that your company is looking for business help and it encourages these companies to make their best effort in meeting your requirements.

In an RFP for business subcontracting you will be specific to the products you would like to use in your project.  For instance, if you want someone to schedule out social media and you want them to use Hootsuite then you should specify this requirement.  The more specific you are with your requirements and your budget, the better bids you will receive.

An RFP also forces suppliers to be realistic and factual identify your requirements when they come back with an offer on your RFP.  It also allows for a larger response to your request for business subcontracting.  It also gives you the opportunity to let the suppliers know that the process of selection is competitive.

A closed bid selection is the best way to go when you are looking at bids for your project. This way, it doesn’t allow a subcontractor to underbid another company for the project.  You should never tell a company what another company bid on the project and give them the opportunity. The entire selection process should be fair to all of the companies.

The best way to find a subcontractor is to write a Request for Proposal for the project and include detailed requirements for the project.

Request For Barter

Spend Money To Make Money

In order to make money you have to spend money.  I’m not talking about spending frivolously.  The spending needs to be an investment to take your business to the next level.  There are a ton of free resources on the web, which are great to get you started, but they won’t last forever.

Through the Solo Smarts podcast I learned to like, trust and invest in Kelly McCausey.  The podcast is free and it really got me headed in the right direction.    One of the first products I invested into was a mastermind group, Solo Masterminds.  Why you ask?  Because it was a great way to learn, network and potentially gain clients.  It took me close to six months before I got my PayPal card out to join the group.

The membership now includes full access to full version products sold outside of the membership – all together you’d spend about $400 to access them…  I haven’t mentioned this yet but probably the best news ever is this:  You only have to pay for your membership for 12 months, then you ‘graduate’ into lifetime free access.

Another thing to remember is there are a ton of mastermind groups out there.  You can belong to multiple or just a few.  I highly suggest keeping to a minimum of two and no more than five.  Otherwise your head will be spinning with ideas and your business won’t grow.

Find out more and get signed up here:


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The Difference Between Subcontracting & Outsourcing

ConnectionWhat outsourcing is. You pass it on. What subcontracting is. The initial service provider is in control but another provider does the work.

There are things of which one should pass on some workload for the company’s development. Which is outsourcing.  The tasks that are not income related or not the best use of the owner’s time should be subcontracted.

To buy a product from someone else and sell it to others is not outsourcing, it is mere a relationship of a buyer and a vendor. Subcontracting involves an in-depth communication process of both your or the project manager with the subcontractor. Failure of the subcontractor to meet the lead directives would mean breakdown of everybody. It is not just instructions that are necessary, it is more to giving out rules and making rules happen. To make an subcontracting business successful it roots to trust, confidentiality, and coordination.

Trust is important for the subcontracting business to flourish. The presence of trust with both the lead and the subcontractor makes them focus more with making productions a hit rather than involving themselves from negative contemplations.

Equally important with trust is confidentiality. Due to tight competition in business, there are matters that should be kept confidential by both the lead and subcontractor. Disclosing private matters will result to a probable malfunction in the business. Thus, problem will arise. It does not just affect the lead contractor but significantly, the subcontractor.

Proper coordination of the lead project manager to the subcontractor is highly vital in the a service business. Coordination gives both the contractors the ability to be responsible with each other’s task. Both should move forward when things are well-planned and well talked about by both parties.

Failure to comply with the essentials of subcontracting means fall down of the business service being performed.

Common business types that are being subcontracted are in the field of:

• Analysis of Data
• Knowledge or Research Processes
• Operations in Information Technology (IT)
• Writing
• Back Office Processes
• Recruiting
• Project Bidding
• Training

Pass it on. To pass part of a responsibility, especially a business task to a third party takes a leap of faith. Subcontracting is essential for service providers who wish to retain and gain clients in the virtual world.

How & What To Subcontract

PLR Articles: How to Choose a Good Service

By Nicole Dean

Private Label Rights (PLR) articles are hot right now. The
only problem is that many people have tried them and been very
disappointed. I can’t say I blame them. I’ve been disappointed, too.

Oftentimes, the PLR services you may have tried are lacking in
several areas. So, what makes a good PLR service and how can you make
sure that you don’t waste you money on a bad one?

Here are some questions to ask yourself before investing any money into a PLR package or membership.

1. What topics are you getting?

I mean, seriously, if you are promised 100 articles each month, but
you end up receiving a selection on Laser Hair Removal and Divorce,
when all your websites are about cooking… You just wasted money.

2. What quality are you getting?

Say you’re lucky enough to get a series of articles on your topic.
Take a minute to look at them. Are they pure fluff? I’ve paid for
articles that had no original ideas, or worse, were written so poorly
that there’s no possible way I’d put them on my website. Make sure your
PLR package contains quality articles. Otherwise, you just wasted

3. How many other people are getting the exact same articles?

If 1000 other people signed up to get the same articles, are you
really receiving any value? Perhaps if you don’t mind reworking the
articles. However, if you’d like more unique articles, then you may
consider a more exclusive PLR service.

4. Does the PLR service give you any extras?

Are they offering training on ways to use their PLR articles? Do
they provide you with ways to monetize the articles you’ve purchased?
Some PLR sites will include recommended affiliate programs and training
on how to use their articles to get the most benefits from their

Really assess the value you’re receiving when investing in any PLR
package or service so that you don’t end up wasting your money. I don’t
want you to make the same mistakes I did.

Author Resource –
Nicole Dean welcomes you to check out – where you’ll find high-quality PLR articles on niches sold in very limited quantities.

How & What To Subcontract

Familiarizing Yourself with the Pros and Cons of Subcontracting

What if your online business seems smaller and smaller everyday for everything – the time, the workload, and the production?

Will you wait for your company to fall apart or act now?

One solution is to subcontract. Subcontracting is commonly known as the administration and supervision of one part or parts of the core business managed by a third party.

Like any business events, there are advantages and disadvantages if one decides to subcontracting.

The following are subcontracting advantages:

• Flexibility

The hours of work may be shorter or longer depending on the lead  contractor’s decision. Additionally, since it is contract-based there is room for  contract extension if subcontractor’s efficiency is well; otherwise contract renewal is not possible.

• Expertise on everything is not a must

Since the subcontractor will be the one to handle part of your business’ sector, you have an option whether or not to be an expert in the field that you want to outsource. Normally, the subcontractor being the party offered by the outsourcing business are the ones expected to be specialist in their field.

• Cost-effective

Generally, subcontracting saves you and your company money. Most often  than not, subcontractor has lesser production cost with efficient services.

• A venue for new learning.  Subcontracting gives both the contractor the chance to explore new business resources such as reading materials, technical and non-technical information.

Not all things are good, others believed that for every matter in life there are inconveniences.

The following are subcontracting disadvantages:

• Inability to have complete peace of mind. Since one part of your company is with someone else’s hand, more likely you will be hesitant once in a while. You may start to worry if the subcontractor can keep up with your business. Henceforth, it is important to have a good foundation of trust.

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Take Steps to Grow Your Virtual Business!

Back by popular demand, the Online International Virtual Assistants Convention (OIVAC) is happening once again.

Sharon Williams, the Steering Committee and OIVAC’s presenters are leaders in the Virtual Assistant world, and have formulated the best program to help build your virtual business. I’m presenting in one of the dedicated tracks you can choose from or better yet, register for the entire event. No matter what stage of business development you are in: start-up or aspiring, novice, seasoned, OIVAC 2013’s presenters are committed to sharing with you real world tools and training for maintaining and growing or expanding your successful VA business.

Here’s what we’ve put together: • 48 hours of training, webinars, networking • 2 and 3 hour “Break it Down” sessions where VAs walk away with a skill, new process or technology awareness • International Virtual Assistants Day Celebration • Networking galore • Ask the Seasoned VA sessions • UK, Aussie, African VAs sessions • VA Hot Seat session

These seminars will be presented, over the course of 3 days, by your fellow Virtual Assistants who have been there, done that.

AND… ANY Virtual Assistant at ANY stage in his or her business career can attend, accessing cutting edge information about getting ahead in an increasingly competitive virtual business environment.

Added Value Benefits: • Pay for entire convention registration in 3 equal installments • Attending live conference will cost about $1,500, but you can participate in OIVAC for less than $300 (and get copies of the recordings too) • No travel, lodging, food or entertainment costs • No lost business because you attend from the comfort of your home/office • Attend from home, available to handle family matters

The cost? Save $50.00 by using the Early Bird Registration $99 to $189.


Hope to see you there!



Subcontracting: A Good Fit for this Start-up

Guest Blogger: KassandraBrownis a new business owner who enjoys yoga, meditation, walks on the land and the freedom to focus her energy on the tasks that are important to her.

When starting my business I thought I would do everything myself. I’ve started a business before and did all of the website design and construction myself, did all of the advertising design and creation myself, and did all of the actual work myself. I figured I’d do it that way again.

My main motivations for doing it on my own fell into two categories. 1) I didn’t think I had the money to afford help. If my time is free, then the least expensive way to do anything is for me to do it myself.  2) I wanted to be seen by myself and others as being competent enough to know what I was doing. I was proving myself and somehow thought I was admitting to some lower level of capability if I asked someone else to do a task for me.



After all, it worked before so why change it?

It turns out there are good reasons to change the ‘do it yourself” paradigm for a start-up and an easy way to change it is with sub-contractors. But before I could benefit from hiring subs, I needed to examine some of my underlying beliefs – namely the ones listed above – and see what was really true.

3 Do It Yourself Myths

  1. I don’t have the money to afford help. Asking others to help me in their area of expertise means the work gets done faster and better than if I do it on my own. The increased professionalism of the end product can pay for itself in terms of helping create more customers through ease of use or appearing more competent through having nice presentation. This needs to be balanced and services paid for judiciously when one is on a tight budget, but it is not necessarily more expensive to hire help.
  2. My time is free but other people cost money. Undervaluing my own time makes everyone else seem very expensive. Having children and balancing time with my family helped me realize just how valuable my time is. This made it easier for me to hire a subcontractor for specific tasks and feel good about the investment.
  3. People will respect me more if I do-it-myself. Being capable is very respectable. Yet most of us want to be seen as capable in our chosen field or vocation. I realize I often have more respect for people who ask for help when they need it rather than maintaining a stoic struggle for independence.


Some tasks of a new start-up are best handled by the owners, but others can benefit from being delegated. I started by bringing in a friend to consult with me on the start-up and visioning. From there, I hired a subcontractor for my website. After I created the basic site and content, he came in and created a unified theme and easy-to-use forms. The subcontractor was hired for a specific task, given a specific budget, and expected to deliver within a specific timeline.

When the scope of all that was finished, our official relationship was also finished. I was left with none of the expectations I would have for an employee like continued production and my subcontractor had none of the expectations for an employer like continued compensation. Clear boundaries for the work, scope, and timeline are some of the best features of a subcontractor relationship.

There are some things that a business owner benefits by doing for themselves. There are other things that are very effective to subcontract. An example of a whole category of things that are good to subcontract – specific tasks requiring technical expertise you do not wish to acquire at this time. Subcontracting allows a business owner the flexibility to focus on the tasks that are important to them because they’ve hired some competent person to do the task they don’t want to do.

For instance, subcontracting aspects of my web development has been invaluable. I’ve saved time by asking my subcontractor to do targeted jobs, but I would not have benefited from subcontracting the entire development of the site. I needed to develop the content and going through that process helped clarify my vision.

I’ve also enjoyed the flip side of subcontracting. I’m currently blogging for  A Cooler Climate. Raising awareness about climate change is a mission I believe in but this business has no budget for hiring me as an employee. Subcontracting allows me to take on finite tasks for a known amount of money over a given time period. Both of us benefit from this clarity and flexibility.

What’s your favorite benefit of subcontracting? Known timeline? Ease of using the right people for the right tasks? Ease of budgeting? Or something else? We look forward to hearing from you.

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Employee Or Subcontractor?

Many employers have elected to hire subcontractors as a way to reduce costs and reduce liabilities. This can be an effective tool, but knowing the difference between what the IRS and other government agencies consider as an employee and a subcontractor is extremely important. If a subcontractor is found to fit certain criteria, they may actually be legally considered an employee and this could leave employers open to stiff fines and penalties from the IRS and even liable for back wages and benefits.

Subcontractor Definition Many employers consider a subcontractor anyone they hire a job out to that is not hired as an employee and pays their own income and withholding taxes. This could be temporary help through an agency or a free-lance entity who charges a fee or commission for their services. Although that may seem to be the case, the IRS has set guidelines on what they consider to be a subcontractor as do state labor and industries and unemployment agencies.

To be a subcontractor or independent contractor under the IRS definition has many different aspects, mostly to do with how the subcontractor and business relationship applies to the work being performed. In general, the definition of a subcontractor is someone who is paid only for the result of their work, not when and how it is done. Here are a few examples of what the IRS uses to help determine an employee versus an independent contractor.

-Directions and training. Subcontractors are generally not trained or given specific directions on where and how the job is to be performed. They are hired for their expertise and are allowed to complete the job as they see fit as long as it meets the final results of the contract for service.

-Hours and workspace. The subcontractor should determine the amount of hours and where they are performed. If a business requires that they perform a certain amount of hours per week or that they do all work on-site, they may be considered an employee.

-Tools, equipment, and expenses. Subcontractors generally pay for their own expenses and provide their own tools and equipment. If you are providing reimbursement for expenses or having them use your equipment, they are more likely employees.

-Length of service. Any contractor that performs work for you for a substantial amount of time or at reoccurring intervals may be considered an employee. Also, the more important that contracted work performed is to a businesses success can also determine that they are considered employees.

The IRS uses a 20-point test to determine whether someone should be considered an employee or independent contractor. They main points to consider is that contractors are hired to perform a specific job based on the results, not how it is performed. They can hire their own employees; work whatever hours and wherever is needed, and are hired by other businesses and individuals to perform services outside of yours. Any limitations to how they and when they perform, who they can hire and where they can complete their work may potentially be construed as an employer/employee relationship.

Other Considerations Beyond the IRS, there are other entities to check with on definitions of subcontractors. OSHA and other worker rights agencies may have stipulations you must adhere to. To protect yourself from liability, talk with a lawyer to understand insurance requirements for job safety concerns. Having your subcontractors responsible for their own insurance in your contract could save you from costs if the contractor is at fault.

Hiring a subcontractor can save you money and time versus hiring a person to do a specific job. Just be aware that just because you or they think they are subcontractor does not make it necessarily so in the eyes of the IRS, the state government or the courts.

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Always Give a Trial Period When Hiring Subcontractors

The Setup

You’ve decided take the plunge and outsource some work to a subcontractor. So, you ask a couple of colleagues for recommendations and they suggest Susie Sub. They say Susie is a hard worker with a variety of skills and she’ll do an excellent job for you.

So you contact Susie Sub and agree upon a rate for your client’s project, sign a contract and you hand over the specifications. You expect Susie to have her work finished by the next week because of the glowing recommendations.

The next day, you email Susie for an update, thinking she might have some questions. As the project manager, you want to give her support. By that night though, you hear nothing back from Susie and start feeling a little worried.

You’re thinking there’s probably a good explanation. You figure she’s probably working so hard on your project, she’s forgotten all about email. She’ll answer your email the next morning.

The Problem

Three days later and you’re anxiously trying to contact Susie. You’ve called her, emailed her, tried to reach her in every way possible and there’s still no response.

Another day goes by and the client is asking questions, wanting to know how the project is going and asking for a few changes to the original project. You still can’t reach Susie and your stress level goes up, so you start working on the project yourself. You’ll have to work as fast as you can through the next day and night but aren’t sure if you can complete it by the due date.

Finally Susie emails you. She’s been visiting her friend out of town and there was no Internet. She did work on your project though and it’s all complete, right on time. You go through it, and the work is excellent. But she caused her so much stress that you almost don’t care.

The Solution

The moral of this story:

When you outsource work to a subcontractor or multi-VAs, always give a probationary or trial period to test if they’re suited to work with you.

A trial run would have helped you discover that Susie has a habit of not communicating during a project, even though she does the work, does it well, and does it cheerfully.

This situation may be difficult to handle and you need to make a choice. Either you can handle Susie’s silence because of her excellent work, or you’re going to be so stressed out by the absence of communication during the project that you can’t possibly work with her.

A trial period can also bring out other problems:

1. Work isn’t finished on time.

2. Refusal to follow your instructions.

3. Negative attitudes.

The Lesson

You may not notice all the problems during a trail period, but you can take quick action to address those that do, and possibly save yourself some headaches.

During the time you’re testing your subcontractor, make sure you are paying her. You may go ahead and sign a contract, including a provision for the trial period.

After a trial period is over, mentor your subcontractor and offer constructive feedback. The reason your colleagues may not worry about Susie is they’ve worked with her for years and know she always comes through. It’s important to tell Susie or other virtual assistant team members that you expect communication throughout the project. They may be happy to oblige.

Get the The Power of a Focused Business and learn how to focus more on your business for greater success.

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