Your business is important to you. It’s your baby. You’ve watched it grow and lost sleep over it. You do your best to make decisions that will not hurt your business. Now that it has grown a bit, you find yourself struggling to manage everything by yourself. Even though you’re struggling, you’re scared to bring on help. You’ve heard horror stories or you’re afraid it will cost too much or you don’t know where to start looking for help.

First let’s discuss the two different ways you can bring on help – project work and retainer work. The main difference between the two is one has a specific start and end date and the other is a monthly agreement.

Key Differences of Retainers vs. Projects


  • Well-defined scope & services
  • Clear, short-term deliverables
  • Shorter timeline (typically < 6 months)
  • One-time needs (once completed, there is no more work to do)
  • First-come, first-serve
  • Budgetary considerations


  • Broad or unclear scope & services
  • Broad range of services
  • Longer timeline (typically 6+ months)
  • Ongoing needs (there is always work to be done)
  • Needs prioritized over projects
  • Budgetary considerations

Examples of Retainer or monthly type VA work:

  • Creating and sending email marketing, newsletters, promotions
  • Blog posting
  • Social media connecting or posting
  • Website support, updates, add-ons or design
  • Computer techy things like online data backups, creating ebooks, organizing files on desktop, organizing email inbox with folders and rules to sort email
  • Setting up new email marketing, hosting accounts or shopping carts
  • Help deciding which technologies and software or services to use in the first place so you maximize your time, are more efficient and don’t waste money on the wrong tools

A project can be a great way to start out. You can hire a virtual assistance for a project which will allow you to get to know how they work and see if they are a good fit for you for retainer work. 

In our newest Free Download, we cover all of this as well as:

  • A few examples of some projects we have done in the last 90 days
  • List of Delegatable Tasks
  • Examples of how to sort your list into categories
  • How to Choose a VA
  • Some Examples of Questions to Ask when Interviewing a VA

What do YOU need help with? Do you even know what you need? Some business owners do not which is where we also come in handy…. 

Grab a copy of this FREE Download –

How to Hire & Work with a Virtual Assistant

by Project or Retainer? – here


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