There are several items that you don’t want to dump on your outsource worker or Virtual Assistant. Some examples would be tasks that are far outside your VA’s capabilities. If your VA is a Webmaster, assigning her the task of creating Apps for Android devices, for example, would cause nothing but headaches. It would frustrate her as she tries to please you and interfere with the tasks you hired her to do.
In cases like this, I recommend outsourcing the task to a specialist. I refer to this as “single-task-outsourcing”. There are a lot of choices when it comes to outsourcing. I have used Fiverr, Elance, and Odesk for single tasks.
My experience with Fiverr was poor. Some of the tasks I found were done well and quickly, but most reflected the adage, “Pay peanuts and you get monkeys to work for you”. Even the feedback system doesn’t work as well as it should. I really should have sent some negative feedback about poor quality work, but for $5.00 tasks, it wasn’t worth my time.
My last experience with Elance (for developing a WordPress Plugin) resulted in a lot of applications that bore a remarkable similarity to each other. From my experience, it appears that a few companies in India have flooded the system with proposals. Within minutes of my posting, I had received answers from these companies. What put me off was that these companies were acting as intermediaries; taking on tasks, then finding a random programmer to work the project. The problem with that is that you would never have a chance to evaluate the work of the person who actually does the task.
My best experience has been with Odesk. A clearly defined task and a good offer will result in applications from talented individuals who want to work for you. For example, I have found a bookkeeper on Odesk who does great work at a decent price. Once a quarter, I send her an exported file from my QuickBooks program, Excel spreadsheets of my business accounts (downloaded from my bank sites), and any other files she may need. She then does all the data entry for the quarter, assigning all entries to the correct US tax categories. She then sends the file back and I incorporate it into my QuickBooks account. This takes care of tedious data entry and frees up my time to work on the things I do well.