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SUB-CATEGORIES: Standard Operating Procedures

Systematic, Step-by-Step Documentation Forming the Foundation of Everything Your Virtual Assistants Do

(These Apply to Most Real Estate Sectors, From Residential Agents to Commercial Investors)

OVERVIEW: The REVAS-Style SOP Creation Process

When we build Real Estate Standard Operating Procedures (SOPs) at REVAS, we always follow a 3-Step Process:

Step 1: The “Over the Shoulder” Training Video.

Step 2: Documenting the SOP.

Step 3: Live Implementation & SOP Corrections.

Below, we’ll briefly go over each of the 3 Steps to help you build your own SOPs.

Step 1: The “Over the Shoulder” Training Video

Anytime we’re building a new SOP, we always start with what we refer to as the “Over the Shoulder” Training Video.

This is either recorded on-site, or more often, via a video call & screenshare (e.g. a Zoom call).

During this recorded Video Training Call, the major stakeholders involved in the Workflow will all attend, and walk through every step of every Task required to complete the flow.

This will typically include Questions & Answers (Q&A), as well as troubleshooting as everyone provides input to ensure the Workflow is being as clearly & correctly described as possible.

Step 2: Documenting the SOP

Once you have a thorough recording from your Over-the-Shoulder Training Video Call, the most important part of building your SOP comes next:

Systematic, detailed, step-by-step documentation of the Process.

While certain mundane details can probably be skipped, a good rule of thumb is to include more than you think is necessary.

Include screenshots of every significant action step required to complete the Task.

Many beginners build “SOPs” as a mere series of bullet points.

However, for a Virtual Assistant to build their day-to-day work off a solid foundation, you’ll want to go into excruciating detail. Never assume someone will automatically “fill in the blanks.”

It’s all too common that you skip one simple step in the SOP, then see your Virtual Assistants messing up at that step over & over again.

This is what we refer to as “systematizing mistakes” and can cause significant issues with your VAs’ training. If left uncorrected, this can even lead to consistently incorrect work!

That’s why it’s generally the best practice to include more detail, rather than less, and to expect that additional refinement will still be necessary once the Workflow is being implemented based on the documented step-by-step Procedure.

Step 3: Live Implementation & SOP Corrections

Once you’ve completed your Over-the-Shoulder Training Video as well as a cleaned-up, step-by-step documented SOP, it’s time to train your Virtual Assistant according to the documented Procedure.

From there, you’ll be able to see how accurately your documentation reflects the real-world, step-by-step Process, based on the actual performance (and likely mistakes) made by the Virtual Assistant as they get to work.

It will typically take your VA at least 5 – 10+ completed repetitions of the Workflow before you’ll really know how well the documented Process matches the real-world requirements. More complex Workflows will require more repetitions to finally reveal potential issues with the documented step-by-step Procedure (especially if the SOP includes variables that occur less frequently).

Eventually you’ll reach a point where the Virtual Assistant is completing the work accurately, efficiently, and consistently.

However, we still recommend treating your SOPs as living documents – preferably stored in the Cloud so it’s easy to make small tweaks & edits – continuously checking in on the live Workflow itself, and ensuing all steps are accurate & up-to-date in the documented Standard Operating Procedure.

Summary: The SOP Creation Process

From recording your Over-the-Shoulder Training Video, to building the documented SOP, to real-world implementation & ongoing corrections:

Creating step-by-step Standard Operating Procedures for your Real Estate Business will have a big (positive) impact.

Not only will these SOPs make it easier for you to bring on new Virtual Assistants (whether that is in the form of growth & scaling up, or in case you ever need to replace a VA)…

… By having a more thoroughly documented business, you’ll also be building a more valuable asset should you ever decide to retire or sell the company!

SOPs make your entire business model more resilient, consistent, and ultimately saleable. Every SOP you build is part of the overall Intellectual Property that makes up part of your company’s valuation.

Therefore, the Return On Investment yielded by building more Standard Operating Procedures for your business is one of the best ways to invest your time, energy, and resources!

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