Virtual assistance is a fast-growing and booming industry. With the advent of technology and integration into our day-to-day activities, business owners are shifting much of their operations to the online world and taking advantage of the benefits of hiring remote employees. With that, the demand for virtual assistants is at an all-time high.
However, becoming a virtual assistant is not as simple as one might think. While there is a variety of virtual assistant jobs out there, employers are looking for quality VAs that can provide them with the support and services they need.
Generally, virtual assistants handle a wide array of tasks and responsibilities. Unlike the common misconception, virtual assistance is more than just answering phone calls and organizing excel spreadsheets. Depending on the scope of responsibilities, virtual assistance can be as simple as data entry, but it can also involve more specialized work like graphic design, digital marketing, social media management, and more.
If you’re thinking about starting your virtual assistant career, it is important that you know what it’s like to be a VA. To help guide you through this, here’s a brief overview of the VA industry over the past few years as well as helpful tips that can help you get a headstart in your virtual assistant journey.
What Is A Virtual Assistant?
Generally, a virtual assistant is someone who provides support and services to businesses online. Their tasks can vary from general administrative tasks to more technical work. The primary element of becoming a virtual assistant is that their tasks are designed to be done completely online. This allows VAs to work remotely whether it’s work from home or work from anywhere that has a good and reliable internet connection.
Tasks and Responsibilities of A Virtual Assistant
The common type of virtual assistant is the online executive assistant that provides support to high-level business leaders or owners. In this position, the VA handles tasks such as managing their client’s calendars, organizing their daily schedule, responding to and overseeing their emails, and the like. Online executive assistants are typically delegated mundane and time-consuming consuming tasks of business leaders in order to ease their workload and free up their time.
However, there are also virtual assistant jobs that require technical skills and specialized training in order to accomplish their assigned task. Depending on their experience and background, some VAs can handle digital marketing responsibilities such as identifying leads and managing marketing campaigns. Aside from that, VAs can also act as customer service agents and provide timely customer support whenever needed. Even more, they can also provide services such as graphic design, bookkeeping, accounting, content writing, and so much more.
To give you a better idea, here are some of the most in-demand virtual assistant services:
- Social media marketing
- Cold calling
- Email marketing
- Lead generation
- File management and maintenance
- Data entry
- Email communications
How To Become A Virtual Assistant?
One benefit of starting a virtual assistant career is that some jobs require little to no training or experience. This means that you can work on becoming a virtual assistant wherever you’re position in life is at the moment. But how do you exactly become a virtual assistant?
Virtual assistance is all about helping and supporting your clients through your skills. So in order to find the suitable virtual assistant job for you, it is important for you to know your skills and strengths. Here are some of the most common skills that virtual assistants start with.
- Editorial skills
- Arts and graphic design
- Computer literacy and proficiency
- Verbal and written communication
- Organization and management skills
Once you’ve zeroed in on your strengths and skills, you can start looking for the specific particular virtual assistant jobs that fit right in your alley. But before accepting any job opportunity, make sure to establish your pricing structure. Most VAs charge on an hourly, daily, weekly, or monthly basis while others ask on a per-task or per-project completion basis.
After establishing the particular VA career you want to venture into, the next step is to obtain the necessary equipment you would need to perform your responsibilities. The devices that you would need to procure depend on the services you want to provide.
Some VA jobs would require just a mobile phone while most need a desktop computer or laptop. Aside from these, also invest in the necessary tools and paraphernalia such as your internet service, your computer accessories, as well as the programs and software that will help you with your tasks. Ideally, invest in your work-from-home setup as it will be your primary working area as a remote VA.
Ways To Boost Your Virtual Assistant Career
Working as a virtual assistant can be a long and satisfying journey. However, some VAs experience stagnancy where they are jumping from one client to another without exactly growing in their careers. To prevent this from happening, here are some tips that can help you improve your virtual assistance progress.
Build and polish your portfolio
One of the earliest mistakes that new virtual assistants do is failing to build and consistently update their work portfolios, As you work with several clients, you are gaining experience as well as honing your skills as a VA. In order to better job offers, it’s important to regularly update your resume and portfolio so that clients know what exactly is it that you have to offer.
Upskill with training courses
While years of experience can account for the training that you would need as a VA, taking training courses and attending related webinars or seminars are some ways to elevate your craft. Not only will you be able to learn about the inner workings of your industry but most online courses provide certifications that can help cement your position as an experienced and qualified virtual assistant.
Virtual assistance is a relatively broad field. While this opens doors for more job opportunities, this also means that you have more people to compete with. If you have a particular skill or technical background in a particular niche, consider specializing in it. This allows you to market yourself as an expert or specialist that can draw the attention of clients who are looking to hire based on a specific VA skill.
Want to know more about the benefits of hiring a VA? Sidekicks is an on-demand virtual company and we’re eager to help visionaries and entrepreneurs like you. Get a free ebook and learn more about how we can help you by signing up for our newsletter. We also offer a free 30-minute consultation if you prefer something more personal.