A virtual assistant offers administrative services to an individual or a business but works remotely – or outside their offices.
COVID-19 has further propelled our dependency on technology and given a push to the Work from Home (WFH) culture. And, thus, virtual assistants have become more popular recently.
On one hand,, automation is reducing the number of mundane tasks in many organizations. But what about jobs that need a human touch and checks? Consider these tasks – checking emails, taking calls and notes, making reservations and bookings, keeping a tab on expenses, posting content on social media, drafting and responding to emails.
No amount of automation or technology can replace such jobs!
Who is a Virtual Assistant (VA)?
Every business hires an assistant for doing their administrative tasks. A virtual assistant is someone who performs such administrative tasks remotely.
As businesses rely on remote work and virtual offices to cut costs, virtual assistants are expected to gain more prominence.
Right now there is a huge demand for Amazon virtual assistants to assist sellers on the e-commerce platform!
Most virtual assistants are freelancers or independent contractors with years of experience as administrative assistants or office managers. They offer their services to clients – companies or individuals – that hire them.
But what if one doesn’t have years of experience as an administrative assistant?
Graduates or professionals who have an educational degree, digital literacy, good communication and writing skills can still become virtual assistants. There are numerous virtual assistant training courses available on the Internet. This makes it easier for an inexperienced person to get acquainted with the roles and responsibilities of one.
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What Does a Virtual Assistant Do?
A virtual assistant takes up a lot of administrative tasks, but is a lot of their work clerical? No!
Many entrepreneurs and small businesses who hire virtual assistants look out for a decent education level, and of course, digital skills in the applicants.
They are hired to take over the mundane tasks like data entry, checking emails, fixing meetings, bookkeeping, making personal appointments, bookings and payments.
Besides, based on their industry profile, they may provide help posting social media content, creating dashboards, marketing and blogging, to name a few.
Why Do Businesses Need Virtual Assistants?
- When you take off the redundant, repetitive tasks, you get more time for productive work. Don’t get me wrong here. Creating reports, finances and emails are still integral to one’s business but consider the cumulative time that gets spent on these things in a day.
A virtual assistant is someone who is specialized in certain tasks – like creating reports, handling emails and making bookings. This means they will not only do these tasks well but also more efficiently. This will let you focus on your core competencies and manage your time well!
- Hiring a personal assistant as an employee is expensive. Outsourcing work to a virtual assistant on a contract basis comes out cheaper.
This reduces hiring costs. Also, these virtual assistants come with years of job experience. Companies can still provide specific training to the virtual assistants they hire. Several digital coaching sites and e-learning communities offer certifications and courses for virtual assistant training. Besides, hiring a virtual assistant does away with the need for dedicated office space and rolling out of employee benefits.
- Virtual Assistants are highly skilled people who can take over a wide array of tasks. This will not only free up your time but also that of your employees.
There is a wide array of things that a virtual assistant is trained to do. Some include web design, social media management, content creation, lead generation, customer service and processing refunds. However, it is essential to make sure the list of tasks that you want to outsource to a VA and hire VAs depending on the workload.
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