Michael Russer, aka Mr. Internet, wrote an excellent column that I came across in the online edition of RealtorMag. He makes the argument that hiring a qualified virtual assistant is a smart way to increase business productivity and production.
He writes that successful businesses focus on three phases: lead generation, lead conversion, and business support. It's the last phase where virtual assistants can be most helpful. Virtual outsourcing is a way to extend yourself without hiring employees and carrying overhead.
You can read the entire column at http://www.realtor.org/rmotechnology/askmrinternet/columns/1008_mrinternet_virtualassistants.