123Employee is one of the largest outsourcing firms in the world, with more than 350 virtual assistants working with clients all around the globe.
The company started its operations in 2006 with just ten employees, but has seen tremendous growth following a simple mission of helping small to medium sized businesses get more done at affordable rates.
They now operate 3 different outsourcing centers in the Philippines.
The physical offices of 123Employee.com are located in the Philippines, and they have American managers on-site. This VA firm offers hard-working Filipinos the opportunity to use their outstanding skills, while enabling American businesses to increase their productivity at minimal costs.
In contrast to many virtual assistant companies who seem to try and remain anonymous, I really like how 123Employee features real VAs in their real offices. While there’s still a little bit of stock photography lurking around, it’s clear the workers and founder Daven Michaels like to have fun too:
The virtual assistants from 123Employee offer professional help with:
• Customer Support/Service
• Research / Datamining
• Database admin
• Video Marketing
• Article Marketing
• Social networking
• Facebook fan pages
• Personal assistance
How it Works
Businesses provide their job descriptions and 123Employee matches them with candidates having relevant education, skill level, and experience and then allow the businesses to interview and select the best candidate. This is a great advantage over other firms that simply assign you a VA based on whoever is available.
You are in control of your VA’s working hours to match your time zone if necessary.
123Employee Intro Video
Plans and Pricing
If you sign up for 123Employee, you’ll get a dedicated virtual employee, with all the office infrastructure and support you’d expect at no additional cost.
123Employee.com offers 3 different Small Business VA plans, ranging from 10 hours a week to 40 hours a week:
- Silver – 10 hours a week, $497 per month ($12.43/hr)
- Gold – 20 hours a week, $797 per month ($9.96/hr)
- Platinum – 40 hours a week, $1287 per month ($8.04/hr)
The mid-level Gold plan is the most popular offering, and is the equivalent of adding a half-time employee. All plans require pre-payment via credit card after you hire your virtual assistant.
These rates are competitive but perhaps a little on the higher end to support the management layer and added infrastructure investments.
One downside to 123Employee is the one-time admin fee of $199 per employee, which covers everything the employee will use (chair, desk, phone line, computer, etc.). Many other VA companies have the same overhead expenses, but few charge this fee.
At press time, there’s an offer for 30 hours of free virtual assistant service plus an audio version of Michaels’ Outsource This! book.
Beyond the set-up fee and recurring monthly charges, there are no hidden fees or long-term contracts. You can cancel anytime.
If you selected “Enterprise” on their homepage, the story is a bit different. You’ll find a site that’s more call center-focused where you’ll have to contact them to get a pricing quote.
The trend among VA companies in the Philippines is to hire home office-based staff, so 123 is a strong entry if you prefer an assistant working from a dedicated office environment. (VA Staffer would be another to consider.)
And if you’re not married to the Philippines, Uassist.ME out of El Salvador might be worth a look as well. Their 20-hour a week plan is similarly priced.
Have you worked with 123Employee.com? We’d love to hear about your experience in the reviews below.