A virtual assistant is anyone who works from a remote location to provide support services to a company. Administrative roles are the most common for virtual assistants, but they can also help with other elements that the company requires.
As technological advancement introduced affordable internet to households, companies realised they could get work done without bringing employees into an office, leading to the first virtual assistants.
Virtual assistants are particularly in demand by entrepreneurs and online businesses that need help but don’t want to spend the money on office space for staff. However, many small and mid-size businesses use virtual support, especially for specific tasks, such as social media management.
How Does a Virtual Assistant Work?
Though it isn’t a distinguishing feature of virtual assistants, many of them serve as independent contractors. They may, for example, start their own home-based virtual assistant company. Clients hire virtual assistants by signing a contract with the virtual assistant’s company.
Virtual assistants may also work for an organisation as workers. Other virtual assistants can move from company to company based on short-term contracts obtained through freelance platforms.
How to Start a Virtual Assistant Business
The first step in starting a virtual assistant business is to determine the area of service you want to offer and to whom. For instance, do you want to specialise in a specific task, such as graphic design or bookkeeping? or Will you focus on a niche market, such as online entrepreneurs or realtors? Once you identify what you’re offering, you can set up your price for services.
Starting a virtual assistant business is fast, affordable, and easy to do. There is a growing need for virtual help, and if you already have the skills and equipment to get started, you can quickly find your first client and be on your way.
Check with your city or county regarding a business license. If you’re already fully equipped to provide virtual support services, the fees associated with obtaining your claim could be your only start-up expense.
What does a virtual assistant do daily?
The typical tasks virtual assistants perform are scheduling appointments, making phone calls, travel arrangements, managing email accounts and other services which may include but not limited to;
- content creation
- graphic design
- social media management
Every virtual assistant offers a peculiar service. Therefore, when starting your career as a virtual assistant, it is critical to identify your niche, develop your strength and provide assistance to businesses that require your skill sets. Also, you will earn more if you are an expert in your field.
Services a virtual assistant provides.
There are numerous services to offer as a virtual assistant and are listed below:
- Social Media Manager
Most business owners understand the importance of leveraging social media platforms to boost business visibility, acquire new clients, engage existing clients and generate more revenue. However, they lack time to dedicate to content creation, sharing and audience engagement which commands the need for a social media manager.
If you have developed a knack for social media usage and can effectively utilise it to achieve business goals, then this métier is for you.
Social media managers are in high demand, and if you have the following skills, you would have an advantage in the job market;
- Understanding how to create compelling content for a targeted audience and familiarity with copywriting and marketing.
- A strong eye for design.
- Trend follower and socially up to date.
- Excellent communication skills to engage the brand audience.
Blogging refers to original writing, photography, and other forms of media that are self-published on the internet.
If you consider a career in blogging, it is advantageous to be a blogger’s virtual assistant. While helping them with administrative tasks, you will learn how bloggers successfully run their blogs.
The primary responsibilities you will perform as a blogger’s virtual assistant are:
- Writing, editing, and proofreading blog posts.
- Blog comment section moderator.
- Design graphics for blog posts and other social media platforms.
- Enhance SEO.
- Manage readers’ emails.
- Schedule and organise social media accounts.
Operating an e-commerce store can be challenging, particularly for small and medium-sized businesses.
These business owners have a seemingly endless list of tasks to manage daily, and this is where the functionalities of a virtual assistant come in.
Some of the things you could help with are:
- Customer service and experience
- Tracking orders, entries, shipment, and invoicing.
- Attending to returns/exchanges
- Managing inventory
- Sales and marketing
- Website maintenance
- General Administration
An Administrative Officer is responsible for contributing administrative support to an organisation. Their duties include organising company records, overseeing department budgets and maintaining inventory of office supplies.
This job is not a specialised role and probably not lucrative, but it plays a crucial role in businesses. It can be the right platform to kick start your career as a virtual assistant as it familiarises you with business management basics and office equipment.
The primary functions of a virtual administrative assistant include;
- Managing calendars and schedule
- Managing emails
- Booking appointments
- Making travel arrangements
- File and document management
- Data entry
- Content Creation
Content Creators create engaging or informative material and are responsible for contributing information to any media. They produce both digital and offline content that appeals to a specific audience’s interests.
If you are passionate about writing, content creation, curating, video and image editing, you could start a virtual assistant business as a content production creator.
Creating content is very engrossing and requires utmost attention. Unfortunately, businesses do not have the time to carry out this function but outsource these tasks.
Content creator virtual assistant execute the following actions;
- Researching content ideas
- Writing blog posts
- Create informatively and attracting graphics
- Source photos
- Take product pictures
- Edit pictures and create videos
A finance assistant is in charge of the day-to-day operations of a financial department. A finance assistant’s key responsibilities include data entry, preparing a balance sheet, reviewing financial statements, and handling invoices. They are also responsible for preparing cost analysis reports for other departments.
Prior experience in finance and bookkeeping is essential to deliver on this job effectively.
Your primary responsibilities as a virtual finance assistant are;
- Invoice creation
- Payments processing
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