What Can You Expect From A Virtual Assistant?
Thinking of Hiring a Virtual Assistant?
Are you interested in making a change in your line of work? The so-called “great resignation” is credited with sparking a boom in the so-called “freelance economy,” which is now responsible for more than $1.2 trillion of the overall US economy.
A virtual assistant, also known as a VA, is one of the most common types of jobs available to freelancers who work from home. Nevertheless, this term refers to a wide variety of occupations.
So, what exactly does it mean to work as a virtual assistant, and would it be a good fit for me? We’re glad you asked!
Virtual Assistant Job Requirements
The requirements for the job will be very different from one position to the next. On the other hand, you should anticipate that the majority of positions will require some sort of administrative background in addition to experience in any particular field they need assistance with.
As a result of the fact that skills associated with virtual assistants can vary, many virtual assistants offer entirely different services and determine their own prices.
A virtual marketing assistant, for instance, will need to have prior experience in marketing, whereas a customer service assistant might come from a background in providing customer service.
In general, the only requirement that is always present for a virtual assistant is access to the internet. After that, the requirements are quite variable.
Virtual Assistant Salary
Some virtual assistants charge as little as $12 an hour for their services, or they may work for a company that pays them a salary comparable to what they would make independently while also providing them with benefits.
On the other hand, many independent contractors working in the field may charge up to $100 per hour or somewhere in the region of $60 per hour.
Others might not charge based on time at all, but rather on each individual task, their abilities within that task, or what they consider to be reasonable for each job. That’s the freedom that comes with freelancing!
Benefits of Becoming a Virtual Assistant
The vast majority of virtual assistants are considered to be independent contractors, which means that many of them get to set their own hours. Setting your own schedule is a huge benefit in and of itself, especially if you’re not a fan of the traditional 9-to-5 workday.
Also, independent contractors get to determine their own pay rates, which means that you can make as much money as you want to charge for your services, provided that there are customers who are willing to pay that amount.
Last but not least, the work is not overly stressful. Independent contractors have been shown to have a lower risk of experiencing stress on the job, as well as a lower risk of developing illnesses that are related to stress.
Do not be concerned if none of those things sound appealing to you. There are a lot of jobs available for virtual assistants, and some of them still provide stability in terms of pay and benefits, while others do not.
What Does a Virtual Assistant Do?
One question remains for you now that you have a better understanding of some of the factors that make this industry so appealing: what exactly do virtual assistants do?
All of these are examples of possible services that could be provided by a virtual assistant. There’s a possibility that two different virtual assistants won’t provide any services that are even remotely comparable to one another, but these are some of the most typical ones in the industry!
This broad category includes a wide variety of tasks, some of the most common of which are customer service, email screening, and scheduling. However, the following are the most common responsibilities of a virtual assistant:
- A systematization of the documents and files
- Schedule management
- Coordinating travel arrangements
- Email monitoring
- Activities related to billing, invoicing, and other aspects of accounting
- Taking and/or directing incoming phone calls
- the process of documenting and keeping records
The examples are endless. It should not come as a surprise that the majority of people who work as virtual assistants have prior experience in the administrative sector, whether it be as a mid-level manager for an organization or as a receptionist for a local dentist’s office.
However, all of these skills can also be taught, so if your expertise lies elsewhere, there’s no need to worry about learning them!
A significant portion of the work of the majority of virtual assistants consists of answering emails, managing schedules, and working with spreadsheet programs like Google Spreadsheets or Excel.
Bookkeeping is a service that is provided by the vast majority of virtual assistants. It is a well-known fact among employees that this is a crucial part of any and all businesses. Bookkeeping is one of the most common jobs in the United States, employing more than 1.7 million people. This may come as a surprise to you.
The addition of this skill to a virtual assistant’s resume is sure to impress potential employers. They are almost certainly going to require bookkeeping services, although it does not matter what kind of company they work for.
Another essential component of a company is its marketing, and professionals with strong marketing chops are in high demand.
The best part is that you don’t even need a degree in marketing to get a job in this industry, which is a huge plus. Many businesses look to hire virtual marketing assistants who specialize in a particular field to achieve their objectives.
For the purpose of implementing a new SEO strategy, for instance, a company might decide against recruiting an entire marketing team or agency. Instead, they could hire an assistant who has experience in search engine optimization and content marketing.
If the company is willing to pay the freelancer’s rate, then this arrangement has the potential to be beneficial for both parties. Not only will the company save money, but they will also receive the services they require, and the freelancer will still make more money than they would working as an assistant.
This is applicable to any specialized area of digital marketing as well. Examples of common specializations within this sector include email marketing, the creation of video advertisements, and social media marketing.
Photography, graphic design, video editing, or even cybersecurity are some options. What do these have in common?
These are just a few examples of the kinds of skills that businesses might require for their advertising campaigns, website content, social media strategies, in-house work, or even more. There are many other skills that businesses might require.
Also, most assistants with niche skills, like web developers, can charge higher rates, which means it may pay off to learn one of these skills.
How to Become a Virtual Assistant
Since you now have an idea of the kinds of assistance that a virtual assistant can provide, you might be interested in learning how to launch a career in this sector. So, here is how you can launch your new career right now, regardless of whether you have previous experience or not.
Hone Your Skills
Which of the skills that you have picked up at school or while working can be applied to jobs that require you to work from home? What would make you valuable as a freelancer in today’s world?
If you find any of these skills, put extra effort into developing them.
Take the example of someone who uses bookkeeping apps at work but does not consider themselves to be a bookkeeper; this person should enroll in a bookkeeping course and become a bookkeeper. Then, in order to back up your skills, you have both the education and the experience necessary.
Learn In-Demand Skills
Today, as long as you have access to the internet, you are free to work from virtually any location you choose. This is the world we live in. Well, the same is true about learning a new skill.
If you want to be competitive in the field of remote work in today’s world, you don’t need a master’s degree that costs one hundred thousand dollars; all you need is the drive and dedication to become proficient in a new skill.
You can find hundreds of helpful courses online, in addition to plenty of free resources, if you want to learn anything on the list that was just presented or any specialized skill, such as blockchain.
You can basically become an SEO expert in a matter of weeks if you have thirty dollars to your name, the patience to read through a large amount of new material, and the willingness to follow along with some videos.
Because of these two considerations, it is our intention to strongly suggest that you enroll in a class and supplement the information you learn there with research done online. To begin, you have the option of including a class with a corresponding certification on your resume. That’s still helpful information, even if it’s just a free online course!
Second, the quality of the content that can be found on blogs varies widely across the internet. Always use reliable professional sources, and check their credibility by doing some additional research online.
Update Your Resume
It is time that your resume reflects that you are seeking employment as a virtual assistant or in the lucrative freelance economy if you are looking to join either of these fields.
Include any recent educational programs that you have completed, as well as your relevant work experience, and make sure that the “overview” or “objective” section of your resume is updated to reflect the position that you are seeking.
Apply for Jobs or Platforms
If you are ready to begin looking for clients, you can begin sending out applications alongside your most recent resume and continue doing so until you find a client who is a good fit. Freelancers are always in demand.
Especially if you are new to the field, cover letters are a great way to differentiate yourself from the other applicants and explain to potential employers why you would be a fantastic addition to their team.
If, on the other hand, you are interested in the freedom that comes with being your own boss, then all you need are customers. To your good fortune, there are many excellent freelancer platforms that can assist you in connecting with companies that have a requirement for your services.
You’ll be able to set your own rates, work whenever you want, and construct your portfolio according to your own standards if you do it this way.
Additionally, the companies that are most actively looking to hire virtual assistants are active on these platforms; therefore, you shouldn’t limit your reach too early on.
Start Your New Career Today
You are now in a position to make an educated decision about what is best for you now that we have provided an answer to the question “what does a virtual assistant do?”
If you believe that working from home could enhance your life in some way, the opportunity to do so is more accessible than it has ever been; therefore, you should work on improving your skills, revising your resume, and finding work as soon as possible.
Keep up to date with our most recent advice for freelancers, and investigate the opportunities for virtual assistants that we have available right now.