“I need more time to deal with all of this”
This is one of those phrases that can frequently be heard from businessmen; most especially from those who own small businesses. When you’re focusing your time, energy, and funding into making your business grow, certain tiny but essential details can be overlooked. You definitely wouldn’t want to spend your time answering phone call after phone call, transcribing documents, booking flights and arranging personal appointments like calling for babysitting services and scheduling doctor’s appointments. These are little things that big bosses can’t seem to be bothered with but can’t exactly do without. Naturally, if things are becoming too much for you to handle, you get help. Or in this case, hire help.
What is a Virtual Assistant?
Typically known as VA or virtual office assistant, a virtual assistant is a generally self-employed professional who provides administrative, technical, or creative assistance to clients, typically from a home office.
Now, some of you may think “I can just hire an actual in-house professional to do those things for me”. Well, here are a few things which may persuade you to reconsider getting a VA.
The thing about having an actual assistant is that there are so many items that you have to spend for. First would be an actual space for the person. That space can be allotted to other essential uses, like an expansion of the production area. Second thing that would cost you would be the furnishings dedicated for the space. Next would be equipment like a personal computer complete with the basic office tools, teleconferencing software and hardware. Now, if you hire a virtual assistant, you don’t have to invest in any of that. Furthermore, you are not responsible for any employee-related taxes, insurance, and/or benefits. An additional expense would be a subscription to a VoIP service for making local and international calls. If the VA is not a US resident, the least costly way would be to buy Skype credits for him. Some clients of MyOutDesk do just that. MyOutDesk, a virtual office, hires and trains VA’s from the Philippines then “deploys” them to different clients.
Most VAs are flexible in terms of payment arrangements and schedules. Furthermore, with the ever growing industry of work-at-home professionals, it’s easier nowadays to get a virtual assistant for any job. Contrary to popular belief, virtual assistants are not just mindless secretaries whose only purpose is to transcribe documents; you can choose a VA who specializes in a certain job. Different types of VA are:
Normally take on internet research, editing, database creation, and overall receptionist work
Proofread and edit print media
Responsibilities vary from creating slogans to posting ads online.
Graphic Design Assistants
Freelance graphic designers who are employed and limit collaboration online
Website Design Assistants
Same concept as Graphic Design Assistants, but their expertise is in web design
Translate documents to a client’s requested language.
Real Estate Assistants
Draw up legal documents, type, design flyers, manage social media accounts, and make calls to homeowners and potential homebuyers
Take on payroll and other financial statements
Medical Transcription Assistants
Transcribe medical reports, patient information charts, and other documents.
Spend most of their time filling out legal documents and may be required to do some documentation for the law firms they work for.
It’s not as hard as you think!
It’s easy to communicate with a VA using email and VoIP services. Just make sure you hire someone reliable and hardworking.