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Why you need a Standard Operating Procedures Manual (SOP)

 

A Standard Operating Procedures (SOP) Manual should be something for you to consider when creating your virtual assistant business. This is nothing more that sets of instructions that outline the various ways in which you plan to manage your business. It will include a variety of areas, which are all considerations you should be making anyways.

A SOP manual can help you create a uniform system for the policies and procedures that take place within your business. It can cover standard office practices, as well as how you accept payments, how you deal with late work, and how to let go of a client. It is beneficial to think about and decide upon this information in the beginning, so that you will know what to do with a certain situation occurs.

Having a SOP manual will also let your customers know what is to be expected of your business. For example, one area of the manual can discuss payments. This will include the types of payment methods accepted, how long the client has to pay for work that has been completed, and how you plan to deal with customers who do not pay. There should be a step-by-step model of how work will be handled within the business, from beginning to end. You can state that you will first quote the work needing to be done. You will then receive the work, complete it, submit the work along with an invoice to the client, and wait for payment.

Yet another benefit of a SOP manual is to familiarize any new employees with the procedures and policies should you hire decide to hire someone. Right now, you may be thinking you will always be a one-man show, but what if business starts booming and high volumes of work roll in. At that point, it may be necessary to employee someone to avoid having to turn away new clients. Having this manual handy will allow for a shorter training time for this new worker, as they will be able to quickly become familiar with the methods you use to run your business.

About Stephanie Watson

Mom | Wife | Virtual Assistant | Content Strategist
Stephanie has been working from home for over 20 years as a virtual assistant, template bender, and content writer. She's currently transitioning to business coach. You can learn more about her at her website http://www.barrypublishing.com.

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