If you haven't worked with a Virtual Assistant yet, here's a rundown on the process at CeTA.
Communication can be carried out in three ways: e-mails, Skype (or another preferred system), or by phone. What we discuss will then be transcribed and e-mailed to you for review and clarification if necessary.
After the initial free consultation (a maximum of 1 hour), you will have a 1 hour free consultation available for each service request.
If you're paying by the hour, the minimum amount of time per service request is 1 hour. You'll be billed by 1 minute increments afterwards, based on the rate of the service. (For example, if your work only takes 20 minutes in total, you'll be invoiced for 60 minutes.) See the Rates tab for more information.
THE PROCESS & POLICIES
Step 1 - Contact / info / details
If you're uncertain as to what type of service you need, CeTA can help you determine the best course of action.
Upon first contact, a few basic pieces of information are required: name, contact number(s), province (tax purposes) and country. Next are the details of the work you require: time frame, deadline, budget and if there are any specific materials to work with such as templates, style sheets, or a workplan.
Step 2 - Estimate
Once we iron out the details and you're wish to proceed, an Estimate will be e-mailed to you. You'll have 3 calendar days (not business days) to review, make changes or sign.
(Note that if you prefer assessing cost based on word count for services such as proofreading, please ask that this be included in your Estimate.)
Step 3 - Service Agreement
Once you sign your Estimate, a Service Agreement will be e-mailed to you. It will contain the details of the service(s) CeTA agrees to provide, the rates, any deposit or retainer fee to be paid, and the policies. Again, you'll have 3 calendar days to review, change, or sign.
Note that the Agreement contains the following clauses: Confidentiality and Non-Disclosure, Relationship of the Parties (it confirms that we are not entering an employer/employee relationship), Governing Laws (which is Ontario Canada), Delays that may affect our Agreement, copyright infringement, using material for CeTA's portfolio, and Termination of the Agreement.
Step 4 - Deposit or initial Retainer fee
The deposit, or initial Retainer fee for those on a Monthly Retainer Plan, is required upon signing the Agreement.
Any material or data required to carry out your work must be sent within 24 hours of signing the Agreement.
Step 5 - I get to work!
Step 6 - Invoicing / Payment
You'll be invoiced on a weekly basis (Fridays) for those on an Hourly Plan and/or when the work is completed. Payment is due within 5 calendar days of the invoices date.
See the Rates tab for more details. Your deposit will be applied to the invoice(s) and any balance remaining will be credited in time which you'll need to use up within 6 months.
If you're on a Monthly Retainer Plan, you'll receive an invoice 7 calendar days before the end of the current month. It will serve as a status report on hours used and remaining, as well as remind you that your retainer fee for the next month is due before the 1st day of the upcoming month of your Plan. It will also contain any additional expenses you've incurred due within 5 calendar days.
Step 7 - Your turn to proofread
Once you receive your deliverable(s), whether service or document, please review it. If CeTA hasn't heard back from you after 48 hours, the work will be considered accepted and any corrections afterwards will be billed according to the rate of the service.
Clear instructions will save you time and money.
Difficult to read handwriting may also eat up your time. Illegible words will be flagged but if the handwriting or copy is too difficult to decipher, the work will be put on hold while the problem is discussed and resolved.
Any request for changes or modifications after the work has started must be done in writing. You'll receive a response within 48 hours which will be in the form of an Amendment or Addendum to be signed, or a counter proposal, or a refusal of your request as CeTA reserves the right to do so. If the rates are affected, an additional deposit or pre-payment may be required, and possibly a revised Estimate.
The same process applies for CeTA. If, for example, additional hours are required, you'll receive an e-mail with the details and a request to approve or decline.
Discounted rates for those on a Monthly Retainer Plan does not apply if you require or request additional hours or change your level of service during that month.