Once you or your organization have decided that you want to hire an executive assistant, now comes the task of finding the best one for the job. You need to be aware of a few stages when hiring an executive assistant.
We are excited to look at some essential tips for finding an executive assistant for your team.
Why Hire An Executive Assistant?
An executive assistant (EA) can bring tremendous value to your team. There are so many tasks to be completed that it's almost impossible for a CEO or senior leadership team to not only do them themselves, but to do them well.
If you and your business are looking for more than a person to delegate simple tasks, and you are at the point where you need a strategic business partner to help you sustainably grow your business, then hiring an executive assistant could be a good fit for your company.
An EA can do many things for your organization, but most importantly, they save time for your senior-level executives. They are extremely ferocious in knowing their job and provide solutions before problems even exist.
There is a laundry list of jobs they can perform not only to help free up your leadership team but to focus on more critical aspects of the business to increase their output and efficiency as team leaders.
The primary goal of hiring an EA is to get your C-level executives and overall business to run like a fine oiled machine. Executive assistants can help with project management, running reports, and market research for essential meetings.
If you and your company are at the peak in terms of capacity and growth, consider hiring an EA to lighten the workload.
Qualifications To Look For In An Executive Assistant
Because the job of an EA requires such trust and chemistry, there are specific qualifications that you want to look for when hiring an EA. Not everyone can fit this very strenuous and stressful position, and only the people who have exceptional organization and a tenacious attitude for success should be considered for such an integral position.
With that said, there are other essential qualities you need to look for in an Executive Assistant.
They enjoy collaborative environments
Their professionalism is second-to-none
They have fantastic networking capabilities
They are great at adopting new technology and can learn systems quickly
Someone who is agile and can adapt
They are a team player
They are great communicators
They can delegate tasks accordingly
They are good at training other people
They are extremely organized
They exhibit great attention to detail
They have excellent written and verbal skills
Confidentiality is extremely important to them
Related Links: 5 Things To Consider When Hiring an Executive Assistant
Tips For Finding An Executive Assistant
Congratulations! You’ve decided to hire an EA, and now the next step is to hire one. Below is a brief outline and tips on finding an executive assistant that is right for your organization.
Create a Dynamic and Compelling Job Post
One of the most important parts of hiring an EA is to attract the right candidates. The only way you will do that is to create an enticing job posting that attracts top talent to apply for the position.
In your job listing, make sure you sell the candidate on why they should come and work for you. These things can include your company mission, vision and benefits. By including employee benefits and wellness perks, it will peak the interest of the applicant.
If you need help crafting your job listing, there are templates that can help you. You need to have a summary description of the job, describe the job's responsibilities, and include the requirements and qualifications that the candidates must have.
Having a clear job description which outlines roles and responsibilities are very important. For example, different industries may require different skills, so having a list of “nice to have” skills would be beneficial.
Advertising Your EA Position
After creating your job posting, you need to look for ways to get the posting out there. One of the best ways to do this is by posting your job on some of the internet job boards, such as Indeed.com, Zip Recruiter, Career Builder, and Monster Jobs.
Internet job boards are among the fastest, most efficient ways to get your job posting public. With thousands of new people searching every day, you will get applicants almost immediately after posting.
Social media is another great way to post your listing. LinkedIn has become the mecca of job postings and can attract top talent by matching like-minded professionals with your job posting. Throughout the years, LinkedIn has become the best way to hire Executive Assistants. Therefore, don’t be afraid to use this channel to find executive assistants as LinkedIn can be a great asset for finding top talent.
Don’t forget the power of word of mouth and referrals. If people are interested in partnering with an executive assistant service, asking fellow CEOs what they’ve used in the past can be a great way to find some qualified candidates.
If you need more help, you may even consider hiring a recruiting agency to help you with finding and hiring an executive assistant.
Once you’ve received some applications, you will need to start screening the applicants and deciding which ones are worthy of your time, energy, and an interview.
You can do this manually or use a 3rd party software to do the heavy lifting. Application screening software can’t do everything, but if you have a job posting where you get at least 50-100 applicants, it may be worth your time.
Your interview process is vital as it is the last step in determining who will be the best fit. Many interviews are being conducted using video conferencing applications such as Zoom or Google Meets in today's environment.
When interviewing candidates, make sure to have unique questions to ask about their qualifications and experience such as “what experience do you have working with executive teams” or “can you share with us some examples of how you helped a management team with their organization”?
Asking questions that ensure they have the experience and skills necessary to do the role, but also questions that ensure they are a culture fit and can integrate with your team seamlessly.
You can also use the following tips below when interviewing:
Try using a supplement test or assessment (KOLBE, etc) to evaluate their critical thinking.
Get them to speak to a few team members on the team to get a 2nd opinion.
Give them an assignment to see how they problem solve and show their critical thinking capabilities.
Working With 3rd Parties
For many CEOs the process of interviewing candidates can be quite gruesome and time consuming, but necessary. This is why you can now find many agencies or boutiques that do 95% of this leg work for you, and pair you with an already vetted Executive Assistant.
Working with a Fractional EA company makes the entire process of finding and hiring an EA extremely easy.
These firms have fantastic teams of already qualified EAs waiting to be hired. They have already had many years of experience and can add tremendous value to someone at your company.
Fractional EA companies are also very well connected with other insider EA groups and always know the perfect EAs looking for a job.
Working with a recruiter, agency, or fractional EA company can be the easiest route for companies who are looking for the easiest way to hire and can be the most effective way to find the right EA - since its such a critical role.
Finding an EA can seem daunting, but it doesn’t have to be. Knowing what to look for and how to navigate the job posting process is half the battle if you decide to do it yourself.
If you don’t have the time or don’t feel confident in your own ability to hire the right person, try partnering with a Fractional Executive Assistants Service that has qualified and strategic EA's, such as Take It Easy Group. No matter what method of hiring you choose, the decision to get yourself an EA could be the most important decision you'll ever make!