Whenever an individual starts a business or wants to expand the existing one, they need professional expertise to do so. However, it can get a lot more expensive to hire different specialists at once to smoothen the process. That is where virtual assistants can be of help to companies in performing tasks to improve their scope of functioning.
But who is a Virtual Assistant?
A Virtual Assistant (VA) is generally an independent professional who can be hired on contract basis to perform specific tasks remotely. However, there are now many agencies or companies who provide virtual assistance services where they have employees who assist their clients.
VA is different from an employee and they are paid on task-basis or hour-basis. They can perform any work that can be done remotely either from the comfort of their homes or office.
Where can you use Virtual Assistance?
As already mentioned, the “virtual” in this term refers to working remotely. SO, any task that can be done without visiting the office premises can be assigned to a Virtual Assistant. Some of the major services that can be done this way are as follows:
- Sales and Marketing: One of the most common and high-in-demand services is Marketing. People around the globe are looking for experts to make their business outreach take a leap. The marketing term in itself covers a wide area. Under this, you can hire a VA to perform tasks like content writing, generating leads, social media planning, website designing, company branding, presentation designing, and so on.
- Accounting and Bookkeeping: Another most common service is accounting and bookkeeping as all the businesses need it, and yet not every business can have a special department dedicated to it because of the budget specifications. Whether it is a small business or large, hotel business or legal industry, everyone needs to have their finances in order. Therefore, many companies around the world hire finance advisors on contract basis. As it is much more feasible than hiring full-time accountants.
- Website Development and Designing: With the market moving over to the internet, it has become the need of the time to have a website to have a digital presence. Hence, almost all the businesses have their websites made as soon as they come into the business. However, it is not an on-going task for which they need a permanent web developer. And that’s where hiring web developers on a contract basis comes in handy.
- Personal Assistant Services: For small business owners, hiring a personal assistant might not seem like an affordable option. But an entrepreneur is an entrepreneur, and when tasks pile up all of them need someone to have their back in keeping their work-life balance maintained. A virtual personal assistant can help in small ways like booking a date with your family, scheduling your yoga/gym classes, or planning a trip for you. All of this while making sure that it doesn’t hinder your professional life.
- Other Administrative tasks: Last but one of the most common services provided by Virtual Assistants is managing administrative or executive tasks. This includes tasks like data entry, sending and replying to emails, scheduling meetings, placing phone calls, booking appointments, managing operational tasks, ensuring team productivity, and so on.
These were just a few of the various ways in which a Virtual Assistant can provide great relief. But here’s something more important. How come one understands that they need a Virtual Assistant?
Signs that you need to hire a Virtual Assistant
Even after knowing where a VA can be of help, many businesses fail to hire one on-time. This can lead not only to a great loss of time and money but also a great loss of opportunities.
Don’t worry, now we will be discussing the signs to know whether you need a Virtual Assistant.
- Starting a new business: Most of the time it begins with the beginning only. You have a limited budget and no name in the market. This can make it even harder for you to hire the right skills. In such cases, hiring virtual assistance services can give you a quick head start.
- Part-time project: In case you get a part-time project from your client which will last for only a few weeks or months, hiring a VA can be a suitable option. Even if your business needs part-time assistance, not enough to hire a full-time employee, you can hire a VA.
- Need professional expertise: There are times when finding the right talent is just so hard; moreover, you can not afford giving in a lot of your time. In such cases, you can hire VAs who are certified and qualified to do the job. Hiring HR consultants is one such example. This is also beneficial for a one or two time job such as website designers.
- Testing the waters: One of the best ways to know whether your business is ready to expand, hiring VAs can be really beneficial. You can expand your business while outsourcing the services from expert Virtual Assistants. This helps you to check whether you can introduce that specific department in your company or not.
- International Expansion: For companies planning to expand overseas, the priority remains understanding that particular market. And who, other than a native expert, can help in assisting you with that? VA services can be offered internationally as well and can provide you better insight in the specific market.
Other than this, you can hire a Virtual Assistant when you want to hire one. As hiring a VA is much less complex than hiring a full-time employee. Furthermore, it doesn’t bound you with various facilities that you must have to provide to your employees such as health care insurance, taxes, fixed salaries, and so on. If you are looking to outsource professional services, such as accounting, you can read why you must outsource accounting and bookkeeping services to get a better idea.
Written by – Priyanka Rampal
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