I guess I shouldn’t be really, but I still get amazed when I meet people, or hear from them via the phone or online, that they’ve just discovered our industry. They’d not heard of a Virtual Assistant before and didn’t know what it was.
Having been part of the industry since its birth many years ago, it’s easy to forget that not everyone has had exposure to the internet as I have had, and indeed, if you have been in the corporate world or manufacturing industry, or elsewhere that really doesn’t require you to be online for business much, then of course you wouldn’t know would you? You would have only been exposed to the things that relate to the business you’ve been a part of.
If you are in need of administrative or secretarial support then looking for a Virtual Assistant makes sense. But it goes further than that. Today the Virtual Assistant Industry embraces many more service offerings that also include bookkeeping, graphic design, transcriptions, translations, research, copywriting, editing and proofreading and a number of other things. While it is true that if someone provides only one type of service might indeed be a ‘bookkeeper’ or ‘transcriptionist’ for example, if they operate via the Internet and provide other services too, then they may well refer to themselves as a Virtual Assistant to cover the myriad of service offerings.
If you are in need of VA support then using Google (or other search engines) will bring up thousands of links – who should you go to? Often engaging a VA that is with a network in the industry is a good way to go. You get choices, you can be sure that the members of that network have met criteria to be a member, and the VAs are available to connect with direct – not through someone else. There are agencies out there who will assign a VA to you, but how do you know if you’re going to get the same VA every time and why should you have to pay an agency to use the ‘VA’s’ services? A VA Network does not charge clients search fees or connection fees to engage a VA from their database.
A Virtual Assistant is a business owner in their own right and are keen and happy to partner with you in your business, to help keep things running smoothly so you are freed up to do what you do best – and to earn an income. Next time you’re looking for admin type support, why not check out the VA Directory I manage? Our longest term members have been with us for over 12 years!