How To Become A Virtual Assistant
Becoming a Virtual Assistant is a great career if you’re looking to improve your work/life balance and utilize your existing skills to make some money.
A VA is a person who provides services to small businesses and entrepreneurs who need support but don’t want to hire someone full time.
If you have a solid background in an office environment and administration tasks then this could be a rewarding job for you. Increasingly, there’s also a demand for more specialized VA services too. So if you have skills in areas such as marketing, project management, or bookkeeping then these are potentially very valuable to clients.
If becoming a VA sounds like something you would like to do, we’ve covered the basics you need to get started.
1. Assess Your Skills
Sit down and make a list of all of the experiences that you have. Include any skills and software you know how to use.
Some VAs target specific industry’s in which they have experience. For example, if you used to work in the legal sector, you might want to approach family law or truck accident attorneys. Most skills are transferable to any sector, so you aren’t limited in who you can work for.
You also need to thoroughly research the marketplace to see what other VAs are offering and how you can compete. If you’re looking for moral and practical support, there are many specialist groups on LinkedIn and Facebook you can join. You will learn more from these groups than you ever would from a course.
Once you’ve nailed down what you can offer, look for any areas that you might need to improve on or take further training.
One of the great things about becoming a VA is that you don’t need any formal training as you are utilizing your existing skills.
2. Set Yourself Up With The Right Tools
As VAs are self-employed and work remotely, there are some things that you’ll need to have in order to do the job properly. These include:
- IT equipment such as a laptop, pc (though this makes it difficult to work on the move) and a reliable internet connection
- Dedicated phone number – this can be a separate line or a virtual number that routes to your mobile. Be sure that you have a suitable answering or call holding service too. If you’re going to be providing a lot of phone-based services, then you may want to invest in a headset too.
- Software – having access to the main programs such as an office system, email client, and remote back up. Many useful communication apps have free versions including Slack, Skype, and Trello.
- Business bank account and accounting software – it’s easier to keep on top of invoices, expenses, and receipts if you have a dedicated place to record them. It will also make it a lot easier when it comes to doing your taxes
- Insurance – as a self-employed VA you’ll need to sort out your own professional indemnity insurance, which can protect you if a client takes legal action against you. Requirements vary by state so you will have research what the legal minimum requirement in your area.
- An online profile – this can be in the form of a website offering your services or an enhanced LinkedIn profile you can use to display your skills.
That’s it, you’re ready to go. Though it’s going to take time to refine your marketing, processes, and service offering, you have enough to get started on your journey to becoming a VA.
– a contributed post
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