But slow and inconsistent connectivity can be frustrating, especially when you work with a fully remote team.
If you’re considering hiring a virtual assistant from the Philippines, but have heard horror stories about the country’s internet, this article will set the record straight. Read on to find out about the reality of the internet speed in the Philippines and how to navigate it:
Based on the speed test global index Ookla released in July 2023, the Philippines ranks 49 out of 182 in terms of countries with the highest average fixed broadband speed. For mobile, it’s 89 out of 143.
This is a huge improvement from last year’s numbers. In July 2022, the Philippines’ average mobile internet speed was 22.55 Mbps while its average broadband speed was 72.80 Mbps. Now, they’re at 25.88 Mbps and 91.56 Mbps, respectively.
While it's not mind-blowingly fast, these speeds are more than enough for your remote assistants to complete tasks like:
With providers like Starlink offering their services to Filipinos, there’s definitely hope for even more improvements to the Philippines’ internet. Infrastructure in the Philippines is improving — and it’s only going to get better from here.
This means the average Filipino VA won’t have much trouble performing their tasks — with natural disasters, routine maintenance, and the occasional technical issue being some exceptions.
While the mobile data and wifi in the Philippines have become more reliable, it’s still smart to prepare for worst-case scenarios.
Here’s how you can deal with connectivity problems:
Ask applicants to share a screenshot of their internet speed as part of the pre-screening process. They can do this by visiting sites like Fast.com or Speedtest by Ookla. It’s up to you to decide on a minimum speed, but at the very least, it shouldn’t go below 5 mpbs.
Even a high-speed fiber network may fail at some point, so ask your virtual assistant to have a backup ready. They don’t necessarily need another internet provider Philippines, but it would be neat to have pocket wifi, a prepaid portable wireless modem they can use in case their main connection fails.
When your business relies heavily on remote workers, having no internet connection can put operations to a grinding halt. You need to come up with a game plan to prevent that from happening — and you must ensure your team is familiar with it.
As a contingency, you might also want to look into hiring in other places like Latin America to avoid work disruptions. Just so you know, Shepherd can help you find LatAm VAs, too. Feel free to message us for more information!
Say thank you to whoever invented co-working spaces, because they sure solve a lot of challenges you might encounter when hiring virtual assistants Philippines. They have speedy wifi, a backup power source, and other amenities that will help your assistant stay productive in case of blackouts and even natural disasters.
Plus, if you have a growing team, they’re the perfect place to gather a few times a month. This study by Harvard Business Review reports that 60% of people see co-working spaces as more socially fulfilling than working at an office or from home.
Trustworthiness is one soft skill you can’t overlook when hiring employees, especially those who are thousands of miles away.
It’s a huge asset to have a VA who does their best to message you when their power is gone and finds workarounds. They should also be transparent, informing you about potential delays and letting you know once their electricity is restored.
If you’re having trouble finding a trustworthy VA, Shepherd is here to help. We’ve found hundreds of talented virtual assistants for our clients, and we’ll do the same for you. Just let us know about the role you need to fill.
If you get a message from your VA saying there’s an unexpected power outage in their area, don’t let your first thought be “Oh, they’re probably just looking for an excuse to avoid working today.”
Instead, trust that they’re telling the truth and that they’ll follow what’s outlined in the contingency plans you established. If your VA has done nothing but deliver solid output since they started at your company, you’ll know a blackout won’t change any of that. Let their track record speak for itself.
Last, but definitely not least, be empathetic — especially when it comes to things out of your VA’s control, like earthquakes and typhoons.
Remember that behind the screen is an actual human being with fears and emotions. Being supportive will go a long way in tough situations. Your VA won’t forget the kindness you extend, and they’ll feel good about working for you.
There are several reasons why the Philippines is still a top choice for many business owners needing remote workers, such as:
The Philippines may still be improving its infrastructure, but it’s not as bad as you think. With the solutions we discussed, you and your VA can sort out the problem and keep your business running smoothly for the most part.
If you want to start hiring virtual assistants from the Philippines, we’re only a message away.