Wishup, a global operation, provides access to knowledgeable and experienced virtual assistants ready to help with recurring work. Services include everything from project management and lead generation to assistance with ecommerce sites and social media marketing. With the help of Wishup, overwhelmed professionals can dig out from underneath the piles of work that keep them from achieving their goals.
Of the many motivational quotes I’ve seen scattered across the internet, one always stands out: You can do anything, but you can’t do everything.
It’s true, and particularly reassuring for folks who tend to carry the weight of the world on their shoulders. Sometimes, the only way to achieve success is to reach out for help.
In the business realm, that typically means outsourcing — a practice in which a company hires a third-party provider for a specified task. This well-established strategy allows companies to deliver products and services faster and at a lower cost than would otherwise be possible.
Of course, trust between the buyer and provider is key to any effective outsourcing relationship. Wishup, based in Delhi, India, recognizes this and is working to build positive long-term relationships between its customers and globally distributed virtual assistants.
To do so, Wishup employs an in-depth vetting process that identifies prospects with exceptional communication, technical, and multitasking skills. Only the top 2% to 3% of total applicants are accepted.
“What we are trying to do is to give only the best employees to companies,” said Neelesh Rangwani, Founder of Wishup. “To do that, we take care of everything related to their quality, training, upskilling, and management.”
Wishup’s virtual assistants are trained in-house to perform more than 50 recurring services, including administrative work, social media management, and assistance with your WordPress or ecommerce site. With Wishup by your side, it’s OK that you can’t do everything — because you no longer need to.
From Delivery Service to Remote Assistance
Wishup was launched in 2015 by Vivek Gupta and Neelesh under a completely different business model.
“The very first iteration of the business was a hyper-local delivery service where customers could have anything picked up and dropped from and to anywhere. This could be something from a friend’s house or food from a local restaurant,” Neelesh says. “But within a few months, I realized that the business model we have is not sustainable in a price-sensitive market like India.”
While considering a new plan, Neelesh and Vivek observed an interesting trend involving WhatsApp, a free service that allows users to send messages, make calls, and share content. The app was fairly new in India at the time.
“We had human agents who were taking orders on WhatsApp. We looked at our data to understand who our customers were and what they were using the service for. We realized that most of our recurring customers were entrepreneurs who were looking for help on operational tasks, rather than for manual work,” he added.
Neelesh then conducted interviews with a handful of Indian entrepreneurs who were requesting such tasks through the company. The interviewees confirmed the market demand for these services.
“We spoke with quite a few entrepreneurs who were ready to pay a monthly fee to outsource some mental work to us,” he said. “From there, we kept evolving.”
Working to Satisfy Demand in the U.S.
Wishup enjoyed early success with its new business model, which was tested first in India.
“We quickly launched this service in India. And to our surprise, we had startups coming to us wanting to use us as an outsourced arm of their business,” Neelesh continued.
By 2019, unemployment in the U.S. dropped to 3.5% — the lowest rate since 1969. At that point, the Wishup team made the decision to change the perception of outsourcing between the U.S. and India.
“The outsourcing industry in India has suffered a negative impression owing to mistakes of the past,” Neelesh said. “To get ourselves past that image, we knew we had to establish trust between our clients and employees based in India. Our goal with our brand and platform was to bridge the gap between them.”
Around that time, Neelesh read “The Four-Hour Workweek” by Tim Ferriss, which mentioned the benefits of working with a virtual assistant based in India. He told us that while the book made it clear that the idea behind Wishup wasn’t entirely new, it also convinced him that his company could do better.
“We knew we could stand out by providing high-quality virtual assistants,” Neelesh said. “We could train them, upskill them, and deliver a better value at an affordable price point. So we worked really hard on our hiring and training models. We hire not only based on skills but also on behavior.”
An Alternative to Traditional Recruitment Companies
Neelesh said Wishup’s first client under its international virtual assistant model was a former Facebook employee and digital nomad. He was working on two startups when Neelesh contacted him to offer the company’s services.
“A member of their operational team, Andrew, started working with us closely,” Neelesh said. “He was our very first client in this new avatar of Wishup. To this day, he is still our client. That gives us confidence that we are on the right path and that there is definitely a long-term value in what we are doing.”
Wishup strives to form long-term relationships between its clients and virtual assistants. The idea is to provide access to remote employees rather than one-off vendors. For this reason, Wishup commonly avoids onboarding freelancers.
“We cater to people who like stable jobs, who like fixed pay at the end of the month, and who know how to deliver value for their employer on a recurring basis,” Neelesh said. “This is what we want on both sides — we expect clients who want long-term relationships and value.”
In this way, Wishup competes directly with recruitment companies. Customers get the chance to work one-on-one with a dedicated virtual assistant who the company rigorously trains in multiple tasks. All assistants to get to know clients’ preferences and anticipate their needs.
“You don’t have to go to a recruiter and do interviews, and you don’t have to fire employees,” Neelesh said. “Technically, as a client, you get all the benefits of a full-time remote employee, but none of the liabilities that come with one, since we manage all those aspects on our end.”
Expanded Sales, Support, and Influencer Marketing Offerings
Wishup will continue to build out its categories of expertise in the near future.
“We’re currently focused on administration and marketing, but we are working on doing more with sales; lead generation experts, cold calling experts,” Neelesh said. “We will also get to get into chat support because we see a lot of demand from B2B software companies and niche e-commerce players.”
Moving forward, the company will also focus on providing solutions in the virtual office category.
“What I mean by a virtual office is a place where people can manage their tasks,” he adds. “So we are trying to provide a system where project management, timesheets, reports, feedback systems, and salary transfer systems, are all rolled into just one app. We’re excited to help companies in this new area, with our single workplace management app.”