Virtual assistants are usually independent service providers of professional and technical works being outsourced by business owners. They are known for their expertise in their respective fields. Since the advent of the internet, virtual assistants thrive in the worldwide web’s virtual space as an avenue to send their work outputs.
The internet contains a wealth of possibilities. And just as it has opened doors for information, it has also become a business vehicle. If you are running a business online, but find yourself needing additional workforce and personnel to keep your business thriving, you can either open a physical office or hire employees the traditional way. Or you set up a team of web professionals online who will work for you at the comfort of their own home. These web professionals who work from home are called virtual assistants or virtual office assistants. Here is everything you need to know about them.
What are virtual assistants?
There are various types of virtual assistants according to their area of expertise. Some can function as a virtual marketing assistant to fulfill your marketing needs, an administrative assistant, who will prepare necessary documents, draft correspondences, or transcribe data, and as a customer service representative who assists customers inquiries and concerns in regards to your products/services. Others offer specialized services like web design, search engine optimization, appointment setting, web management, graphic design, and bookkeeping service, among others.
Some virtual assistants have established connections, and may at times refer you to their VA contacts or contract out the work to other virtual assistants when they can no longer accommodate your request. These days, clients and their virtual assistants usually communicate via online voice and messaging tools like Skype, email, and mobile phone. For the physical transfer of documents, they use fax and courier or postal services.
Because the web enables people to communicate with each other from virtually any place in the world and considering there are now various payment remittance options, a business owner can choose a virtual assistant from any part of the world. Clients can work with individual virtual assistants or tapping companies who offer VA services to meet their exact needs.
Pros of hiring a virtual assistant
Just like hiring a regular employee, hiring a virtual assistant has both its advantages and disadvantages. But if you are running a small online business, hiring virtual assistants will have greater benefits than drawbacks. First of all, you do not have to allot resources for office space, internet connection, and other facilities and supplies your VA may need to do the job you requested.
And, because you are technically contracting your VA’s services instead of carrying an employee-employer relationship in the traditional sense, you are not obligated to pay taxes, insurance, or other benefits unless you have otherwise agreed earlier on. The only thing you have to provide your virtual assistant is the payment for the work produced. You also have a freer hand in specifying work hours and other conditions.
Cons of hiring a virtual assistant
The only downside to hiring a virtual assistant is when the VA you hired is unable to deliver the work promised. It is therefore important to scrutinize applicants and choose those with considerable experience and a proven track record. Conversely, considering the only expense you will be making with VA is their salary, it is also only appropriate that you do not short-change able and dependable virtual assistants. You must give them salaries commensurate with their skills and their performance.
Virtual Assistants are the key to enabling small businesses to truly take off and thrive. It is a growing profession, and when you find a virtual assistant that best suits you and who is able to deliver what you require, you will see that getting a virtual assistant is good business sense.
What virtual assistants do?
As we mentioned what virtual assistants are, let us also give you an idea of some of the tasks they do to help you run your business.
Daily record date output management
Virtual assistants provided by a company, not individual work are controlled by a company. The parent company manages times logon and logoff, and virtual assistants work in coordination with the client synchronization, so if something needs to adjust the request, can be done without delay.
Customer direct cooperation coordination
Virtual assistants are made to coordinate directly with customers, so the customer can continue to be developed for each project that he/she controlled. Virtual assistants work on a project always in IM or Skype ID to an officer available to employers that customers can contact the project as demand increases. With this strategy, it is easy for customers to manage and supervise the work to remain free under your business’s requirements. Save time and quite a way to reduce costs, so that the client wants the job done efficiently and the money you pay for the service worthwhile.
Daily, weekly and monthly
Whatever the developmental stage of the project by the parent company that provides virtual assistants left. This list is daily, weekly, and monthly, which sent all the details about the project and included development levels. This makes it easier to understand for the client that the money you pay to hire virtual assistants is not in all cases, waste.
With these monitoring tools, the customer is always supported and will not feel that their investments will fall. Another advantage of this strategy is that people begin to rely on hiring virtual assistants.
Why there is an increasing demand for virtual assistants?
Despite lapses in the economic growth of major industries the world has experienced in recent years, it is undeniable that the outsourcing industry seems to be non-vulnerable. More and more businesses, either big or small, are extensively jumping towards the wagon of the global outsourcing industry. Virtual assistants’ role in any business process is a vital one that keeps industries cope and runs their operations with ease and efficiency.
As a matter of fact, many businesses worldwide, who incorporated virtual assistants in their manpower pool, have surpassed the economic turmoil halting the maximum revenue potential of those who delayed or rejected the idea of outsourcing some technical works to virtual assistants.
The use of the internet proves to contribute to the new model of a business process incorporating offshore outsourcing. The World Wide Web’s virtual space provides an unlimited number of opportunities for all businesses to promote their products and services. In return, this virtual space also created many jobs for virtual assistants skilled and adept at helping businesses advance and realize their maximum profit potential.
How to become a virtual assistant?
Nowadays, the Internet is such a powerful tool that makes it possible for people to work together even if they are a thousand miles away. This gives a doorway to the birth of an individual who is now considered as a vital key of a business organization, and that is our virtual assistant.
A virtual assistant is someone who offers support to someone via the internet. Services being offered range from SEO, online marketing, administrative tasks up to coaching and business presentations. So, the next question is how to become a virtual assistant and take a piece of the growing opportunity around it?
Here we have listed five steps to help you to become a Virtual Assistant and have a great start.
Confirm your resolve
This is something that needs to be cleared first. A virtual assistant’s world flows in a result-driven environment with minimal supervision and can even go as far as no supervision at all. Because of that, it is easy for someone to go astray and drift if the level of dedication and conviction is not enough to go against the distractions of working from home has to offer. You need to tell yourself “I AM A ROCK STAR, VIRTUAL ASSISTANT”.
This is a common practice yet very effective, knowing the basic information on something is essential for anyone who is new around it. A lot of major pitfalls can be preempted and put you at par with the professionals around the virtual arena.
Acquire a computer
Well, of course, you need one since this job dwells in a virtual realm. If you think that an internet café or borrowing a computer would suffice that wouldn’t work. This job requires access to the internet which means having a decent personal computer is a major necessity. If you don’t have any do your research first before buying one.
Subscribe for an internet service provider
This one is a must because internet service will be your core means of information between you and your future clients. Whenever choosing your ISP, remember not to compromise the quality for the price.
Join a virtual assistant firm or company
Professional virtual assistants already managed to build their networks and contacts, which help them to get a job and fill in the hours. For starters, the best way to do it is to join one of the best virtual companies that offer virtual assistant services. Doing this will give you more market value to the world of virtual assistants and eventually bit by bit build your own network and contacts.
So there you go, follow these few steps, and for sure you will have a fantastic experience as a neophyte in the virtual industry.