What Do Virtual Assistants Do?

virtual assistants, woman

You may have heard about virtual assistants and how some online companies are getting services from them. We often heard the term in social media and other online forums. However, we may not fully understand its meaning.

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Virtual Assistants (VA) …What Does it Mean?

Virtual is being defined as something that is occurring or existing primarily online. Assistant/s, on the other hand, is someone who gives help, assist, someone who gives aid or support.  Virtual Assistant/s or more commonly known as VA are those multi-skilled, independent-minded individuals who give assistance to clients using the online platform.

The growth of online industries opened a new door for individuals to work on their own place at their own time. More people are now taking the advantage of these opportunities of being able to work at home. This could give them the ability to work at their own time and without leaving their homes. Online companies or business preferred to hire virtual assistants because it is cheaper than hiring a regular employee. 

There are several freelancing sites that are offering virtual assistant jobs to those who will qualify. The skills requirements may differ depending on the type of business that they may have.

The work to be done depends on the assistance needed by the client. The needed skill or skills depend on what the client requires at the time of hiring.  A client may prefer an individual who has multiple skills.  One should learn different skills in order to get more jobs and in order to become a successful freelance worker. 

Here is a list of services a virtual assistant can offer to their clients:

Accounting Services:

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Accounting tasks involve processing of financial information of the company. Big companies may hire full-time employees or may outsource the task and get virtual assistants.

Accounting is a tedious process which requires expertise on the specific field. Accounting can be divided into several areas which include financial accounting, management accounting, external accounting, tax accounting and cost accounting.

Organization’s financial information is one of the main concern of the companies, especially the financial statement which should be ready to external users. Mastery in Microsoft Excel is an advantage. The companies may assign different fields to each virtual assistant depending on the competency level of the worker.

Accounting tasks may be divided into job sub-categories such as computation, classification, and recording of numerical data. Virtual assistants may be asked to do any of the following:

  • Summate, check and validate numerical data
  • Check the entries of transactions
  • Prepare general ledgers and invoices
  • Check the accuracy of figures and posting calculated by other
  • Pay bills on time
  • Reconcile credit card statements, vendor’s and clients statement Bank Vendor’s and client’s statement, Bank account statements and Vendor’s and client’s statement
  • Process accounts payable and receivable transactions
  • Prepare financial statements, Trial Balance, Profit and Loss account and Balance sheet

Administrative Assistance or Administrative Support:

administrative assistance
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Administrative assistance or administrative support refers to a job that performs a clerical function in a certain organization or office. The duties may include taking notes, managing, and issuance of information within the organization.

Most employers would prefer a well organized and with strong work ethics individuals. Clients preferred individuals with good technical, interpersonal and communication skills.

Having a wide knowledge in Microsoft Office would be an advantage. An individual should be great in multitasking

Here are some of the additional tasks that may be required by clients or employers:

  • Answering the phone/assisting clients
  • Managing documents or files
  • Providing assistance to clients
  • Scheduling meetings and conferences
  • Preparing business correspondence, agendas and presentations

Basic Skills for Online Freelancing

Article Writing

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Online business owners may require virtual assistants to write articles for their websites for any given purpose. This may include writing product or service reviews or other topics depending on the business of the company.

The client may need individuals who can write on topics related to health, family, relationships, fashion, home management, sports, gadgets, electronic products.

Excellent English skill is a must and being able to write regarding any given topic is an advantage. Those who have previous experience in writing will be an advantage.

Posting on Internet-Based Forum

posting int forum sites.
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Online forums are a great way to advertise products or services.  Companies may hire virtual assistants to introduce their products in an Internet-based forum without sounding like you are advertising the product.


Online companies may hire individuals who are knowledgeable in data entry, customer service and support, and other clerical works. If you have these skills, you might be the best person fit for the job.

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Sharon Lopez

Sharon Lopez is an online freelance worker and at the same time a full time government employee. Graduated from the Divine Word College of Legazpi, Legazpi city with a Bachelor's Degree in Commerce, Major in Banking and Finance. She has been working as an online writer, blogger, call auditor and involved in other online jobs which she is doing on a part time since 2010.

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