Australian Enterprise Awards 2023

Feb22538 With a commitment to excellence and a passion for supporting people in the workplace, Katie Hurst is flying the flag for virtual assistants everywhere with her firm, Virtual Office Connect. We find out more from Katie as the company gains recognition in the Australian Enterprise Awards 2023. Virtual Office Connect is experienced in delivering customised realtime solutions for the workplace, such as reception and administration services, project management, bookkeeping and accounting, and marketing. The firm’s dedicated team of managed services specialists have more than 50 years’ worth of combined experience in helping businesses scale up efficiently. With more than 25 years’ worth of experience personally, director, Katie Hurst knows what it’s like to go from startup to established. “As the saying goes, ‘Jack of all trades, master of none’ seems to be the norm in the early years of business but it doesn’t have to be!” she explains. “Virtual assistants can help by providing a whole host of services, such as virtual reception and administrative services, bookkeeping, and tax agency assistance.” As a Sydney-based business, Virtual Office Connect has both a national and global clientele, as well as an equally extensive database of professionals and consultants to support the specific needs of its clients. “Every business owner envisions a future for their family and business, and Virtual Office Connect transforms that vision into reality,” elaborates Katie. “We create flow in business, maximising profit. This is a process we have perfected over the years, and continue to finesse, as business ecosystems evolve.” Covid was instrumental in pivoting businesses from office-based to working from home overnight. As time went on, and technology evolved at an alarming rate, there was a boom in communication and productivity apps, with better cloud-based PABX systems entering the market. With greater workplace flexibility, there was improved productivity, but for families, working from home certainly had its issues. Despite these challenges, Katie tells us that there was an increase in trained VAs (virtual assistants) entering the marketplace, which provided people with greater employment opportunities to serve clients more extensively. “The change in marketplace conditions allowed our team to expand on our service capabilities,” she continues. “As a company, we are about connecting virtually and supporting business owners in the management of their administration and bookkeeping. As receptionists, we understand the importance of first impressions and building client rapport, so we decided to build on this!” Virtual Office Connect transitioned from answering calls to being an integral part of its client’s team in order to meet growing demands during the pandemic. As a team, the firm decided to take the time to understand its clients’ teams, business dynamics, and their needs, so it could serve them holistically. “Beneficially, our team loves the flexitime which increases their productivity and engagement. Our clients benefit from expert knowledge, the right person, and the right solution for the right problem. Overall, our business and our clients are maximising profits by optimising their time!” The internal culture in Virtual Office Connect is the driving force behind the entire operation, with Katie explaining that she wants the team to be excited about working with each other each and every day, as well as excited about connecting with and serving the firm’s clients. When recruiting for new staff, Katie seeks to employ based on personality, values, and skills. “If a prospective employee is teachable then they can be trained,” she enthuses. “Work should be fun, innovative, and collaborative. After all, who wants to work eight hours a day and not laugh or be appreciated? My team is our success and this is what we want for our clients!” And as if to demonstrate its commitment and dedication to its clients, Virtual Office Connect was recently bestowed with the Excellence Award for Virtual Administration Solutions – Sydney in the Australian Enterprise Awards. Now, as Katie and the team look to a bright future, it appears that the sky is the limit. “An exciting development for the future is our newly minted Recruitment Agency and Affiliate Programme,” she states. “Our teams want to capitalise on our networks by connecting the right employees with the right businesses, monetising opportunities so we can start to financially give back to our local communities. “Next year, Virtual Office Connect will be establishing a not-forprofit organisation with a view to building stronger communities. Watch this space!” Contact: Katie Hurst Company: Virtual Office Connect Web Address: Excellence Award for Virtual Administration Solutions - Sydney Feb23016