The Ultimate Guide to Hiring a Virtual Assistant from the Philippines

Are you drowning in a never-ending to-do list? Maybe it’s time to hire a virtual assistant to help with daily tasks. 

The Philippines is the #1 destination for virtual assistant outsourcing. There are about a million VAs in the country, offering high-quality support services to clients all over the world. 

With the rise of remote work, Australian businesses are embracing the trend and increasingly relying on Philippine virtual assistants to help out with operations. Let’s look at why Australian companies hire virtual assistants from the Philippines and the types of tasks you can outsource. We’ll also share some hiring best practices and tips for onboarding and managing a Philippine VA.

Why Hire a Virtual Assistant from the Philippines?

The Philippines has been the go-to outsourcing destination for over three decades, and for good reason. The country’s labour is hard-working, dedicated, and cost-effective. 

Australian businesses stand to benefit from hiring a Philippine virtual secretary in many ways. For one, many Philippine workers already have experience engaging with global companies and many speak fluent English. This makes for seamless onboarding and effective collaboration. 

While VAs work remotely, the Philippines is in a time zone similar to Australia’s. With only a couple of hours of a time difference, it’s easy for Australian businesses to work synchronously with their Philippine virtual assistants. 

Of course, cost savings is one of the biggest reasons to outsource to the Philippines. While Philippine staff offer top-notch services, they do so at a much lower cost than Australian labour. You can expect to pay around AU $9-15 per hour, including bonuses and overtime. This is compared to Australia’s minimum wage of AU $23.23. 

Defining the role and scope of services a virtual assistant can offer, including common tasks and how they can support businesses remotely.

A Typical Philippine Virtual Assistant Task List

The goal of hiring a VA is to reduce the burden of daily tasks from your operations based in Australia so you can focus on strategic tasks that grow and scale your business. 

Depending on your needs, you can engage an entry-level VA to do several basic tasks. Here is a standard virtual assistant task list: 

  • Calendar management
  • Email management
  • Data entry
  • Customer support 
  • Bookkeeping 
  • Answer phone calls and emails 
  • Organising travel and events 
  • Scheduling and confirming meetings 
  • And much more

That said, you can also outsource more specialised tasks to a virtual assistant in the Philippines. This may include graphic design, market research, lead generation, social media management, and tech support. 

Identifying Your Virtual Assistant Needs

Whether it’s a small business or a large company, hiring a VA from the Philippines can remove a lot of administrative burden from you and your team. Before embarking on the journey of global hiring, your business needs to determine the types of tasks to outsource. 

To do so, you’ll need to consider your overall business goals and ensure that your VA’s tasks align with your global objectives. Assess your current workforce and operations. What types of tasks are taking time away from your growth and development? 

Once you’ve decided which tasks and roles are suitable for virtual assistants to handle, you can start the hiring process. 

Hiring a VA from the Philippines: Best Practices & Tips

Ready to hire a Philippine virtual assistant? Here is a step-by-step guide on how to get it right. 

1. Write and Circulate a Compelling Job Description.

The first step in hiring a qualified VA is writing a detailed job description that clarifies your expectations. This will ensure that you receive applications from the best-suited and qualified candidates. 

Not sure where to start? Here’s a VA task responsibilities template that can be used to get you on track:

Bonus: Sample Virtual Assistant Job Description Template

Job Description: We are seeking a proactive Virtual Assistant to provide administrative support to our team while working remotely. As a Virtual Assistant, you will perform various administrative tasks, including answering emails, scheduling meetings, and managing calendars. The ideal candidate should be able to handle administrative projects and deliver high-quality work under minimum supervision.

Responsibilities: include:

  • Manage email inboxes, including reading, monitoring, and responding to emails on behalf of the company.
  • Schedule and coordinate appointments, meetings, and events.
  • Manage calendars and set up reminders to ensure all appointments are kept and deadlines are met.
  • Perform research on various topics as directed and compile data into comprehensive reports.
  • Handle administrative requests and queries from senior managers.
  • Prepare internal and external corporate documents for team members and industry partners.
  • Assist in the preparation of regularly scheduled reports.
  • Support with social media management, content creation, and customer service as needed.
  • Handle confidential information with integrity and discretion.

Review Applications and Interview Potential Candidates

After closing the call for applicants, review the CVs you’ve received and identify who you’d like to interview. You can do this manually or use an HR automation tool to sift through the resumes. 

Then, contact the candidates and conduct interviews. Make sure to inquire regarding their previous experience, check their English-language proficiency, and evaluate the candidates’ cultural fit with your organisation.

Test and Vet Stand-out Applicants

Once you’ve identified the top candidates, administer skills tests and check their references. You can use numerous tests to check for skills like data entry, writing proficiency, tech knowledge, and even cultural fit. You should also contact their past employers to get an idea of the candidates’ experience.

Pro tip: One thing many business coaches encourage is to request a video introduction from your applicants. This helps you determine who of your applicants is genuinely interested in your role to put in some extra effort and can help you assess communication capabilities.

Make an Offer and Complete Hiring Formalities.

Review the interview and test results, and decide who will be the perfect fit for your business. Then, make an offer and draft a compliant contract. Discuss the job’s details, such as pay, working hours, holidays, and other expectations with the potential hire. When both sides are happy with the terms, sign the job contract per Philippine and Australian labour law.

Onboarding and Managing a Virtual Assistant

The process of onboarding and managing remote workers can be a unique challenge for companies. Here are some tips to help you and your new team members succeed. 

Whether you are looking for simple tech support or to outsource entire development projects, the Philippines is an ideal outsourcing destination.

Have an Onboarding Plan

Prepare a plan for the new hire’s onboarding process. Make sure to provide the VA with everything they need to get started. This includes access to relevant documents and accounts as well as any culture and company training. 

You should also establish clear expectations to set your VA up for success from day one.

Engage Effective Communication 

While VAs work remotely, supporting and acknowledging their success is still important. Consider a virtual assistant a member of your larger team who contributes to your business’s overall objectives. 

Treating VAs respectfully and rewarding them for going above and beyond will encourage quality work and increase retention.

Scale and Grow Together 

Over time, as your business grows, remote Philippine VAs can become an invaluable asset to your Australian business. Providing opportunities for growth just like you would local talented staff is an excellent way to build a loyal and happy team. 

Hiring global virtual assistants can lessen the burden of daily operations and allow you to focus on what matters — growing your business. Book a call with us today. We’ll walk you through how to hire a virtual assistant from the Philippines and help you with onboarding and managing your Philippine-based team members.


1. What Qualifications Should I Look for in a Philippine Virtual Assistant?

Before hiring remote workers in the Philippines, define your objectives. Decide which roles you’d like to fill through outsourcing, the type of support your organisation needs, and how long these engagements will be. 

For example, you may need to contract a temporary team to build and launch a website as a one-off project. Or, you might want to set up a long-term relationship with customer service staff to support your clients in the long run. 

Whatever your goals, make sure that you have a plan and clear goals before diving into global outsourcing.

2. How Do I Communicate Effectively with a Philippine Virtual Assistant?

Effective communication is crucial to the success of remote workers. Various tools can help you maintain both synchronous and asynchronous communication. Besides email, you can explore platforms like Slack and Trello that support team and project management. 

Also, ensure that you set clear expectations regarding availability and communication turnaround at the onset of the contract.

3. What Are the Best Practices for Onboarding a New Virtual Assistant from the Philippines?

Here are some best practices when it comes to onboarding a Philippine VA: 

  • Prepare an onboarding package and share it with your new employee. 
  • Provide a detailed job description, introduce your company’s mission and values, and explain the role’s expectations. 
  • Establish clear workflows and communication protocols. 
  • Assign achievable goals and tasks to build confidence and competence. 
  • Schedule regular check-ins and performance evaluations. 

Clear expectations and lines of communication will help you foster a supportive and collaborative relationship with your new VA, ensuring the success of your remote team strategy.

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