Being a Virtual Assistant (VA) is not all about the client sending you typing, you do the work and send it back, there is much more involved.
As a VA we do many things, there is month end administration with invoices every month so no matter how busy you are, you stop and do your invoices, it is important to be paid for the work we do. You set aside a day and get your invoices out. Bookkeeping and updating your schedules. This is just one part of our administration another part is, we need to push clients and contractors for payments and invoices, we have to battle with clients who do not want to pay, who query what we do.
One of our aims is to keep our clients happy all the time, we need to keep that client as they provide us with ongoing work so we nurture that client; our clients are our bread and butter. We need to liaise with our clients often.
Managing many clients work is not an easy task. Keep their work in separate folders also in my documents have client folders and in email. With regular clients it is best to invoice monthly. All my clients are regular so I prepare all their invoices at the end of the month and get them all out at the same time so that I can monitor payments coming in. This is where my work log comes in handy as I document all work incoming, and I check back against this when doing my invoicing for each client.
Administration as we call it is a major part of being a VA. We need to market continually, our company needs to be out in the public eye and be seen. Our websites/blogs need to be updated. We continually look for new avenue’s to market our work to. Networking is just as important, there is always the need to tell everyone and anyone what we do, who we are, get the word out there. Any person you talk to could be a potential clients or referral, that’s why it is important to talk about your business no matter where you are, when you can and who you are with. We continually need to look for avenue’s to advertise our companies.
Often we need to do debt collecting with clients who do not pay, this is not a nice part of the job but we must do it, we need to be paid for what we do.
Managing of contractors, when a VA is overloaded we then get the opportunity to help out newbie Vas by contracting to them or helping out established VAs with a bit of extra work. Contracting work out is not as easy as you think. We are on our contractors backs to get them to keep in touch, they need to meet our deadlines, what if the contractor decides she is not doing the work or cant for some reason then we need to find a replacement in the middle of the work that is time taking. Paying of contractors on completion of work.
Another favourite is quoting for work, often ad-hoc jobs come in and we need to arrange a quote, quoting is not quick we need to ask questions to be able to place a price on the work, very time consuming especially with larger jobs.
Filing must be done as with any job, the office administration as seen above is often the hardest part of our job to do, but that comes with running any company/business. There are still many other facets about being a virtual assistant, the best way to learn about doing this type of job is to talk to established VAs as they know what they are doing and they can give you valuable information.
So you see it is not all about sitting and typing, it is about running a full time business/company, and these are only a handful of the tasks we do.
Written by Alison Fourie VAcertified
AMF Typing Service cc
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