What does a Virtual Assistant do? How are they essential to a company? Those are the questions someone would typically ask if they hear the word “Virtual Assistant.”
A Virtual Assistant can be your go-to person when things get out of hand. They can help you with almost anything or, let’s say, get some of the items on your long list of to-dos to be taken care of to complete things promptly.
Virtual Assistants not only help you with your to-do’s, but they can also take on some particular tasks, and we will discuss that in this article.
The most common tasks for a virtual assistant are administrative tasks, including handling client emails and phone calls, calendar management, and hosting meetings/webinars.
But that’s not all, as some virtual assistants have specialized skills to take on more tasks. You can often find a virtual assistant with experience in sales and marketing or data analysis. Although these specialists charge a little more, their expertise is worth the expense!
Here is a list of tasks you can consider delegating to a Virtual Assistant:
1. Organize communication via Emails and Phone Calls
Email management and phone calls are everyday tasks for virtual assistants.
Having a virtual assistant manage your inbox and phone calls can save you hours weekly and allow you to spend your time on higher priority tasks.
Since virtual assistants will not be able to grasp your company services and other policies immediately, it’s best to create guidelines for responding to frequently asked questions from customers.
Setting a policy for promotional messages is also a great idea as that lessens the time they have to ask you what to do, which means more time you can spend on other things!
On the other hand, phone calls are a bit challenging because, without prior notice, you will be disrupted by what you’re doing, causing you to lose focus. And with the help of a virtual assistant, you won’t have to deal with those disruptions anymore.
A real person should answer your calls instead of letting them go to a voicemail, as that shows your business is fully operational and that you are available during business hours when your customers will need you for some assistance.
Customers would appreciate it if they could talk to an actual human to leave their message. If there’s ever an urgent situation, your virtual assistant can reach you immediately.
2. Plan, organize and execute office activities and meetings
Part of what virtual assistants specialize in will be handling meetings and company events. Meetings like weekly or inter-company ones are easy to handle as they would mostly revolve around the company’s progress throughout a week or so.
However, company events and other extensive meetings for executives are very challenging because you have to ensure everything is planned and organized.
Having a virtual assistant to help you with these events is a great advantage because you wouldn’t have to think of how to make the event successful or what documents or things you have to prepare for the event as your virtual assistant will take care of that in your behalf.
This will not just ensure you have a successful event, but this helps make sure that everything is in the right place without you worrying about how to get things done.
3. Minutes of meetings
Having an organized and structured agenda for every meeting is a must, and that is an essential task you can delegate to a virtual assistant. It helps ensure your session has a workflow, and each team member will be able to give updates on the company project they’re working on currently.
Taking down the minutes of the meetings is a vital task because the minutes will show the summary of what and how each team member achieved things. It will also give a clear path to managing hours on specific projects and focusing on which ones require more priority.
4. Project Management
Commonly added to the virtual assistant job description and is one of the most known virtual assistant skills.
As the project manager, a virtual assistant will plan, monitor, and oversee a project to ensure that the entire team works hand in hand to complete it on time and deliver high-quality work, so there is minimal supervision from the executives.
5. Book travel, events, and accommodations
Booking for travel and accommodation is quite challenging and time-consuming because you’d have to check the available flights for your trip and compare prices from different airline companies. Not to mention you’d have to select the perfect time for your flight and then book a hotel that would also be available during your stay. That’s just a lot to take in, and you’d also have to create an itinerary for your travel duration to make the most out of the trip. Apart from that, you have to look out for events related to your business during your travel so you can attend them to meet new people and expand your network.
Instead of doing all that, you might want to consider delegating this to your virtual assistant. It would not only put you at ease for your upcoming travel, but you can also have enough time to prepare for the things you need for the event. Your virtual assistant can also help arrange some restaurant reservations if necessary.
6. Manage social media
As a business, keeping your social media accounts up to date with all the latest updates on your company, feedback from clients, and all other stuff is a great thing because that shows how socially active you are, and this will make sure you keep your customers engaged with all that’s been happening.
To ensure you can achieve this, you want to have a virtual assistant do the social media management for you. Why? Simply because you wouldn’t want to be thinking about what things to put on your social media accounts. There’s much to consider on what to post, so it is as informative and engaging as possible. Not to mention that it will consume a lot of your time, too, so rather than doing it yourself, it’s best to delegate it to a virtual assistant so you can focus on other things with high priority.
Your virtual assistant can draft and schedule posts and engage with your followers. You can also have them act as a moderator and make sure the comments left on your social media pages aren’t inappropriate.
Some virtual assistants specialize in this field, and most of them do not charge as high as other virtual assistants.
7. Recruitment (source for other team members)
Recruiting is quite challenging, but almost anyone can learn it. In most cases, the online world will not have its own human resources team so you can delegate it to a virtual assistant.
Although several people specialize in this type of work, if your company is not constantly outsourcing for new employees, you might want to give it to a virtual assistant than hire a professional with a hefty fee. After all, this is one of the administrative tasks you can delegate to your virtual assistant.
Creating guidelines on what things to look out for when hiring and what experience is needed will help ensure you hire the right person for the opening.
8. Manage and Organize company and customer Data
Managing and organizing records of your customer and company data is another essential administrative task you can delegate to your virtual assistant.
Collating and keeping all your customer and company data is quite a challenge, let’s face that, but if you have a virtual assistant who’s excellent at organizing and keeping things in place, that’s an advantage!
Because that helps ensure the data is in one place with all necessary information. Making it easier to know where things are located, and if the customer requests their records, it’s easy to share the data.
9. Organize the manager’s calendar
Your calendar schedules and appointments are important, and nothing should be missed, so it’s best to delegate this to your virtual assistant.
That way, you won’t have to bother worrying about who’s the next person you will be talking to, what things you need to discuss with them, or even how long the appointment will last because your virtual assistant can give you all that information by managing your calendar.
Although there are tools you can use to automate and manage this, it’s always an advantage if you have administrative support to monitor it for you, as that will help ensure you’re up to date with every schedule you have on a particular day because you wouldn’t want to miss out on any important meeting/appointment from a client.
As part of the virtual assistant duties, in case you need to reschedule an appointment, your virtual assistant can send an email notifying the other party of the new schedule or call to confirm or mediate the new appointment schedule.
10. Content Writing
Virtual assistants can help create your business’s blog posts, newsletters, and other written content. They can also help with editing and proofreading content before publishing it.
Part of virtual assistant skills is research, so if you do not want your virtual assistant to do the content creation, they can do the research instead and gather all the necessary information needed to create the content.
Remember that good-quality content comes at a higher price and most virtual assistants are not full-time writers. They can help fill in the gaps, but if you want someone to handle lots of content for your business, it’s wise to hire a specialist.
11. Document Template Creation
This task can range from creating a funnel for specific processes to documenting some essential data.
Templates will make your processes easier to follow and guide a person on the next steps rather than dealing with questions on how and what next steps they should take. This is an essential task that a virtual assistant should handle to reduce the management time spent on specific processes and use that time on far more important tasks instead.
This will also ensure that your company processes and data are organized and easy to track.
12. Data Entry
This is one of the most common virtual assistant services offered. All virtual assistants will always handle this kind of work. That’s because this is a very tedious task you wouldn’t want to deal with to focus on other things with higher priority.
Although some specialize in this work, any virtual assistant can quickly adapt to this as this is not very hard to do – only time-consuming.
This is also commonly added to the virtual assistant job description, so it’s no question that all virtual assistant handles this.
13. Transcribe voicemail, video or audio, podcasts, etc.
Transcribing is a very common task for a virtual assistant related to Data Entry. However, it is not often delegated to a virtual assistant as some people use tools to transcribe videos or audio recordings automatically.
However, let’s accept that these tools aren’t perfect at transcribing things because there will still be grammar lapses and wrong translations of words. And having someone to make sure everything is accurate with fewer grammatical errors gives you another level of comfort.
Most virtual assistants are not accountants but can help with bookkeeping tasks like reconciling transactions and maintaining your financial records with software like Xero or Quickbooks.
Additionally, virtual assistants can act as your billing collector to create and send invoices to people with an outstanding balance from your company to make sure you get your payments on time.
They can also give you reminders of your upcoming subscription renewals to ensure any subscriptions you have will be paid before their due date to avoid any issues.
However, one thing to remember is that with this task, the virtual assistant will be handling sensitive data. You must find a trustworthy virtual assistant with plenty of references. Although, some specialize in this kind of work. If necessary, ask them to sign a nondisclosure agreement.
15. Prepare company presentations for reports (Performance, Billing, etc.)
Company report presentations are essential and quite time-consuming because you’d have to check several platforms and ensure you have accurate data, especially when presenting sales statistics and performance.
These things are best given to a virtual assistant because this is one of the essential tasks they handle.
This should be easy, too, as guidelines are already predefined to determine what data to present and how it impacts the company.
16. Basic graphic design and video editing/optimization
Editing and optimizing videos and graphics are special tasks for a virtual assistant. This is because not all virtual assistants do such work.
However, this does not mean that your virtual assistant cannot do this because they have no experience doing it.
This can easily be achieved with the proper guidance and tools plus motivation to make this a learning experience. Even if this is quite a tedious job to complete, there are things that a virtual assistant can learn from it.
There are several virtual assistants too that specialize in this type of work. However, they charge more depending on the complexity of the task. In some instances, you may find it hard to outsource such virtual assistants because they would typically disregard basic editing due to the rate involved.
On the other hand, if your business requires doing a lot of stuff like this, it might be worth having a virtual assistant with experience. This will save you a ton of time and make it easier to get things done promptly.
17. Provide customer service as the first point of contact
This would relate to handling emails and phone calls and is essentially the main task for a virtual assistant.
As a virtual assistant, you will be representing your company to its customers and make sure to attend to their needs to keep your relationship with them.
Providing customer service should not be difficult as we deal with such things daily. A simple redirection to someone you bumped on the road asking for some direction is already considered an act of customer service. You see, customer service is not only about taking emails and phone calls, but it can also be helping out other people because that’s where everything will start.
You cannot provide customer service if you are unwilling to help people. Remember that.
Most virtual assistants have a customer service background, which is an advantage because dealing with different people every day is no joke. Sometimes, some people would piss you off, but the patience of a virtual assistant with customer service experience is incomparable. They might also be the sweetest person you’ll ever meet!
18. Liaison between admin and other team members
A virtual assistant would not only represent your company to your customers but will also be the one who will liaise the relationship between the executives/admin and the other departments/employees in your company.
This makes sure that there’s a proper de-escalation process of things that needs to be raised to the executives rather than being bothered with something which can be resolved without their involvement.
19. Help employees with their administrative inquiries
Providing administrative support to employees is one of the everyday tasks a virtual assistant will do. Since they work closely with the admin/executives, they’d be the perfect person to reach out to whenever employees will have questions or need something.
20. Preparation of Training Materials
Preparing training materials and gathering information is tedious. You don’t want to work on this, especially if you have other important matters to attend to.
This would probably be one of the most common virtual assistant tasks. Considering that a virtual assistant gets to observe the overall activity of all employees and departments, this would help formulate training processes and create the materials needed for any new hire.
21. Train and supervise other administrative staff
There’s no better way to save time on training and supervising other administrative staff than from a virtual assistant. Why?
Because as previously mentioned, virtual assistants get to observe all the activities and processes practiced by all employees in different departments. And why bother doing that yourself when someone working under you has that capability, right?
Instead of managing the admin team of each department yourself, your virtual assistant can do that for you since it’s on the virtual assistant duties.