Case study: What does a virtual assistant do?
Here at Prialto, we hear success stories every day from our clients. From managing daily tasks to assisting with projects, our PAs (productivity assistants) understand how to be proactive team players.
Yet, not everyone understands how much their PAs can do for them, and it’s easy to be left asking, “What does a virtual assistant do?”
Today, we’re sharing how one of our top PAs and her Member have grown from a simple “Schedule this” and “Cancel that” relationship to one where he has come to rely on her to orchestrate larger projects.
Case Study: Castlight Health Hands Off Their Admin And Grows Their Operations
Tom McGurran is Castlight’s VP of Customer Success. With 50 people on his team, managing 250+ accounts worth over $80m in revenue, you could say he’s a busy guy. When Prialto started working with Castlight, though, Tom was still working in their sales division.
Prialto was brought on as a small pilot program with a few of their Sales VPs, and they were told to use this service for calendar and travel management. However, many people struggled to make the service work with these limitations.
That wasn’t the case with Tom and Jenny, though.
Jenny Tuguigui was assigned to Tom’s unit (55 hours of time per month), and at first, the tasks were very simple. He’d ask for help with scheduling, but Jenny quickly realized he didn’t really know how to best utilize her — and that she could help. Jenny says:
“I started offering to do more. Because I was CC’d on his emails, I’d say, ‘I saw in your calendar, you’re traveling to Phoenix. Do you want some help organizing that?’”
That was when things started to kick into high gear.
Slowly, Tom began to pass more tasks over to Jenny, and she began to understand how much to be involved. Picking up additional tasks daily as she saw them in his email, Jenny’s proactive attitude ensured Tom was able to stay on top of his schedule and on track with his team.
When people began seeing Tom using Jenny in so many ways, they wanted to know how he did it.
Prialto was already working with a few of their other sales VPs to help with scheduling and other core administrative activities. However, when we noticed how they were using their CRM, we could see more opportunities to support their executives. We began to help with sales operations projects when PAs had additional bandwidth. By fully utilizing their PAs in this way with buffer projects, Castlight started to see more growth, and we grew right along with them, adding additional PAs to supplement their sales operations.
That was when someone outside of sales got wind of what was going on.
When Castlight’s internal leadership began to see how Prialto was helping their sales executives perform at their best by enabling them to focus on revenue generating tasks instead of being bogged down with admin work, it became clear the rest of the company’s executives could benefit from this level of support as well.
Today, we’re an integrated part of Castlight. They’ve seen us a cost saving method, enabling them not to hire additional in-house assistants, and having us back fill positions as folks move on.
Way More Than Outsourcing
We work well with their internal assistants, too. By plugging into Castlight’s Slack, both Castlight on-site EAs and Prialto Castlight PAs work collaboratively as one team. We now even provide administrative support to their chief executive assistant, allowing her to get move involved with investor relations and other project-based work.
In addition to our normal activities, we’ve had some incredible opportunities to assist in other ways, too. We had the privilege of helping onboard portions of their new executive team when Castlight recently acquired another company, which we were able to nail thanks to our understanding of their office building, internal processes, and more.
Today, Castlight has been with Prialto for 4 years, and Tom is effusive with praise for Jenny.
She transitioned right along with Tom when he moved from his sales management role to his current customer success role, and the way she has continued to take on operational tasks has made her indispensable to him.
Today, Jenny is the control tower for all incoming requests for support and client issues. As Tom’s primary gatekeeper, she handles all incoming requests, ensures they go through the right channels, and prioritizes them in task-management tool Trello. She also handles CRM tasks like running reports and managing his Salesforce dashboard, reminding him and his team members about follow ups, missing documents, and scheduling as needed.
In addition to her operational tasks, she recently planned the team’s annual party and company retreat, reserving hotels, organizing catering, and more. Tom jokes that his team knows when Jenny is CC’d on something, they get it done fast — because if they don’t, she’ll be on top of it.
We’re thrilled Tom has gotten so much out of working with Jenny, and we want all of our Members to get this kind of value from Prialto.
Curious how you can get more out of your relationship with your PA?
Here is Jenny’s advice.
“Don’t be afraid to explore options! It can be as simple as asking a PA to cancel something. You just need to learn to trust and experiment with your PA, and as long as you are both open, you’ll be able to successfully grow that relationship.”