The pandemic forced many people to work from home, and many people are finding they enjoy the flexibility working from home provides. When it is time for people to physically go back to offices, some people may quit rather than go back. This means they will need to find a new job they can do from home. Becoming a virtual assistant is a great way to work from home and make decent money.
What Is a Virtual Assistant?
A virtual assistant, otherwise known as a VA, supports a business from a remote location. The VA could work for one or more businesses, depending on how much money they want to make and how much the business needs from them.
High-speed internet, the ability to easily share documents, and conference call systems like Zoom or Microsoft Teams, allow people to work from home while helping a business with their administrative needs.
Virtual assistants are in high demand right now because they can work part-time for businesses that don’t have enough administrative work to hire someone full-time. It benefits the VA as well because it gives them fewer fixed costs, flexibility, and the ability to scale up or down depending on what the business needs.
What Do Virtual Assistants Do?
There is no cut-and-dry rule for the role a virtual assistant plays for a business. It depends entirely on the needs of the specific company. However, a virtual assistant can be in charge of many things, so there is likely something you will enjoy doing. Here are some examples of tasks you may do.
- Managing social media
- Business Administration
- Generating leads
- Managing emails
- Customer support
- Ghostwriting/blog writing
- Designing websites
- Editing and proofreading
- Content research
- Maintaining WordPress/website
- Data entry
- Video editing
There are many more tasks you could be asked to help with, but that should give you an idea of what types of things you may have to do. The more differing tasks you can handle, the more desirable you will be to businesses.
Skills Needed To Be a Virtual Assistant
You may be asking yourself what types of skills you need to be a successful virtual assistant. First and foremost, you need to have a good understanding of computer skills. You should know how to navigate the internet easily, and having some experience in things like the Google Suite and Microsoft 365 will help land you jobs.
Consider how you can bring your experiences and skills to a business. However, if there is nothing you specifically know a lot about it, don’t be deterred. If you are highly motivated, have good communication skills, and are willing to learn, there is a decent chance a business will take you on. In fact, if you have technical skills but don’t have motivation, communication skills, and a willingness to keep learning, you will likely have trouble as a VA.
There are multiple steps to becoming a virtual assistant, but follow the steps, and you shouldn’t have too much trouble breaking into the industry.
Know Why You Are Doing It
It won’t be easy to succeed if you try to become a virtual assistant and don’t know why you are doing it. You have to know exactly what you want to get out of being a VA and do everything in your power to make it happen. Don’t just go in without a plan and then give up when something unexpected happens. You’ll never make any headway going about it like that.
Research and Plan
Read some articles about what a virtual assistant does and get some feedback from people who have actually lived the life of a VA. It’s important to know what to expect so that you can make a good plan. Once you have researched, figure out what skills you want to focus on and make sure you are up-to-date on them.
Figure Out Your Business Model
Determine whether you want to be fully remote or if you are willing to go into the office from time to time. If you want to save money on commuting but still want to be around people sometimes, a hybrid approach may work well for you.
You also need to decide whether you are going to file as a sole proprietorship or an LLC. A sole proprietorship is the easiest and doesn’t require much setup. However, if anything happens to your business, your personal assets are at risk. An LLC, or limited liability company, takes a little more setup but separates your personal and business assets.
Take a look at your finances and decide how much you want to charge businesses for your services. If you need to make a decent bit of money, you may wish to set your prices high. Just remember that a higher price tag means employers will be expecting top-notch work. On the other hand, if your finances are pretty solid, you may consider lowering your price to help get attention from employers.
Establish a Presence Online
If you want to become a virtual assistant, you’re going to have to do some work getting your name out there. Jobs will not appear magically, so you will have to spend some time getting the word out that you are available. Marketing your business can be tricky, but taking small steps will get you far. Some great first steps are getting your business added to local business directories, creating a LinkedIn profile, networking, and posting all over social media.
Becoming a virtual assistant has many benefits, but there are certain things you need to consider before setting off on the journey to becoming one. First, you need to research the job, make sure you know why you are doing it, and that you are committed. Next, you need to determine whether you will be a sole proprietorship or LLC and determine your pricing structure. Finally, make your availability obvious via business directories and social media and start getting some clients.
You can get started becoming a virtual assistant with Virtual Assistant Canada. We handpick clients for our assistants, have a live job board, and offer training to help our assistants grow.