What is a Virtual Assistant and what does a Virtual Assistant do? We’ve put these questions together because they get asked frequently, and one generally follows the other.
This is our definition of a Virtual Assistant, although it can vary: A Virtual Assistant is a office administration professional that works from the comfort of their own home office or a leased office space or anywhere they want to be! They are generally a sole trader, carrying their own ABN and working the hours of their choosing.
What does a Virtual Assistant do? Well, there are endless ways this can be answered, but in short, a Virtual Assistant does the majority of things that a personal assistant or office administrator does, but they’re never in your office. Answering telephones, replying to emails, invoicing your clients… anything you can do online, your Virtual Assistant can help you with.
What can a Virtual Assistant do for me? Advancing technology means that you don’t need to hire an administration professional to sit in your office. Below is a tiny list of tasks that we regularly carry out for our clients:
Typing & Data Entry
Logo, Letterhead and Business card design
Brochures and flyers
Marketing Content and letter templates
Updating the content of your websites
Updating your social media accounts and replying to your customers
Replying to your client’s enquiries via email
and much, much more!
Why should I go with you? If you’re weighing up the pros and cons, we’d suggest giving both a trial run. You can then decide based on results, not on words. We often speak to clients who’ve not had much success with overseas VA’s, and want someone that they know they can rely on, that speaks our language and understands business in Australia – and that’s important!
What hours do you work? We work to our own timetable and we can discuss your needs to find the right fit. We normally work 9 to 5 business hours.
What tools do you use to get your job done? We love living in this era of technology! There are so many tools available to us online to make working remotely easy for everyone. We love Zoho Projects and Dropbox for file sharing, we use Google Apps for our email, calendar and contacts, we use Skype for communicating – just to name a few. Of course, you may recommend new technologies that you use in your business and we are more than happy to use these also.
How can I hand over my email inbox to you? If you want us to manage your email inbox, it’s easy. We simply set up a copy of your email account on our desktop and manage it from there. Or, if you’re already in the cloud ie. Gmail, we can simply log on intermittently throughout the day and service you that way.
How do you access my contacts, calendar and email account? A lot of our clients are already in the cloud and use services such as Google Apps or iCloud for their email, contacts and calendar. If you aren’t setup in the cloud and would like to be, we can certainly offer this service for you. Or, we can recommend someone that can help.
How often do you invoice me? If you purchase a pre-paid package or are a retainer client, we request that the money reaches our account before we commence work with you. Retainer clients have different guidelines than pre-paid package clients, but your still need to be financially viable with us for us to keep working.
What are your payment terms? We have a strict 7 day payment term. We are a small business too and if payments are late, you make incur late fees.
What are my payment options? Payment options vary from but generally speaking Direct deposit into our bank account is usually the best way. Credit Card payments may be available but will incur a transaction fee. All the details you need will be on your invoice.
How do I work with a Virtual Assistant? A Virtual Assistant works remotely – they rarely (if ever) have to step foot in your office! They can do anything task you require, provided they have the information and software (where applicable) available to them online.
All Virtual Assistants work hours that suit their lifestyle: whether it’s a normal 9am – 5pm, or perhaps at night after the kids are in bed, they can work from the comfort of their own home: making a happier, more engaged worker!
Applications like Dropbox, Google Drive, Zoho Projects and Skype mean that you’ll barely notice they’re not there next to you. The tasks will be done on time and how you like them. Better still – you only ever pay for the hours they actually work and any expenses. No need to worry about break times, superannuation, income tax or anything else! So ultimately it is affordable and you pay for what you use.
What do you need to know? When you first contact us (whether by phone or email), we’ll ask questions about you, your business and the tasks to be completed. We’ll also ask you for an approximation of how many hours you think these tasks might take (or how long these tasks currently take you to complete).
Do I have to train my Virtual Assistant? Taking on a Virtual Assistant is like a new employee into your business, so you’ll need to spend some time coaching your Virtual Assistant in how you like your work completed.
This may be as simple as a document with instructions, or an in-depth Skype conversation.
We have vast experience in EA/PA roles and are super-fast learners so don’t be surprised if we catch on faster than you expect!
Most clients find they spend around an hour or so on coaching, and then provide feedback ongoing. You might like to implement this as a ‘process’ – which means you build the role over a period so that everyone’s comfortable and the role progresses as per your expectations. This is especially good for people to find it hard to delegate or to let go… Is there a service you’d like us to offer? Let us know what we can do for YOU and if we can’t provide it, we’ll certainly source a reputable service partner who can!
Oh yes, we nearly forgot… Is there something you think we can do better? Please don’t hesitate to let us know