Virtual assistant

The future of the virtual assistant

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As a small business owner, your time is valuable. To learn useful facts about hiring virtual assistants and their benefits, you won’t want to miss watching this video. Work Better Now Co-Founder and CEO Andrew Cohen sits down with Small Business Trends Editor Shawn Hessinger to discuss how virtual assistants can help you grow your brand without breaking the bank.

Rethinking the virtual assistant for your small business

To learn more about Andrew Cohen and his virtual assistant agency, you can click here.

Shawn: What is a virtual assistant? What does a virtual assistant do?

Andrew: This term has really transformed since we started. Before, that meant administrators and data entry located outside of our offices, right? In other words, remote talent who could fill a void in process-oriented roles.

Now that position has really transcended and changed into something bigger. Everyone is working remotely because of the pandemic, and they can use these virtual assistants in different ways.

Andrew goes on to say that while he sees them being used in an executive administration fashion, they are also being used in business development and marketing now. He adds that he also sees VAs used for social media channels, billing using QuickBooks, customer service, and taking inbound and outbound calls.

Shawn: What types of people need virtual assistants?

Andrew: Our business motto is that every business should have an assistant. Take solopreneurs, for example, as they are a type of business owner who can usually benefit from an assistant. Otherwise, they will spend time on repetitive and time-consuming tasks that someone else could do and allow them to grow their business.

Andrew mentions that one of his clients is a shipping/delivery company and he uses eight of Work Better Now’s VAs. Some of the tasks these assistants perform include:

  • Take incoming orders
  • Perform customer service follow-ups, customer calls
  • Billing and Fulfillment Tabs via QuickBooks
  • Planning with the drivers

Andrew says it’s amazing what VAs can do and the talent is there. And finding that talent, understanding how to hire it, use it, and implement it in your business, is important.

He said what his company once thought of as its target market has really transformed into something much bigger as the ability to use talent remotely has increased since the pandemic.

For us, he says, there is no longer any barrier to telling people that they can work virtually. We all know that, since we’ve been doing it for two years. Therefore, we know that is why you can use a virtual assistant.

Shawn: What are the main tasks that people use a virtual assistant for that we haven’t mentioned yet?

Andrew: If you’re a senior executive, have a schedule, and set up meetings, it takes a lot of time between you and the person you’re trying to meet. You have an assistant who does it for you. Anything an executive assistant can do for you is truly the best things virtual assistants can do.

Other examples: sending invoices, collections, follow-up of commercial calls. For example, you may have a call with a potential customer and you let them know that you will be sending them information. These are also the best things a VA can do.

Andrew says his company practices what it preaches. He goes on to explain that it is a small company and that 17 assistants work for them. He adds that 14 of them are in Central and South America, and those are the same 14 that they rent out to customers.

He adds that the 14 do everything from social media management to recruiting and onboarding tasks such as processing incoming CVs and interviewing candidates.

Andrew says the company is having an event in New York in a few weeks, and his executive assistant is doing things to organize the event, like contacting venues, setting all the prices, and managing the loot the company is giving away.

Literally all those time-consuming tasks you don’t have time for, that’s what our VAs work on.

In the video, Shawn and Andrew also discuss:

  • The value proposition of having a VA help with your small business or the value of not going it alone.
  • The huge differences between freelancers and virtual assistants.
  • Where and how to hire a virtual assistant.

Be sure to let us know in the comments what you think of the video and if you plan on using a virtual assistant after watching.

Listen to the full episode and subscribe on SoundCloud…

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