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What is a Virtual Assistant, and do I need one?

Since starting ARC Virtual PA Services this is a question I am asked regularly. A Virtual PA, or virtual assistant (VA), is the term used for skilled professionals, usually with an administrative background, who provide business support services from a remote location.


Thanks to advances in technology, virtual assistants or virtual PAs are able to work almost anywhere with ease. They are becoming increasingly popular with tradesmen, sole traders, entrepreneurs and small online businesses that could benefit from an extra pair of hands, but don’t want to employ another member of staff. However, the skills of a virtual PA can be utilised by anyone who needs help with the running of their business.


Virtual PA holding a phone in her left had while working on a laptop. There is a pen drive on the laptop.

So what does a Virtual PA actually do?


In theory, a virtual PA can do pretty much anything other support staff can do, with the exception of making the coffee! However, the duties aren’t limited to admin work.  Many virtual PAs offer a wide range of skills and services aside from standard admin work.


My skill set includes executive assistance, document creation (including SOPs), research, proofreading and formatting. While some virtual PAs specialise in a specific set of skills, others carry out a range of duties within a specific industry or niche.  We’re more than just someone to pass your admin to; we can offer professional business support in many key areas.


Virtual PAs save you time and money


Since virtual PAs are self-employed they are a cost-effective way of delegating some of your work. They work remotely from their own office (hence the virtual). They are also there to help your business using their specific range of skills (which is where the assistant come in). You don’t have to pay tax or National Insurance. They provide their own equipment but will require access to some of your systems and programs. They also don’t require space in your office (although some may offer in-house services).


You can work with them on an ad hoc hourly basis or on a monthly retainer depending on your requirements. Many virtual PAs offer packages from as little as 4 hours per month.


One important thing to remember about virtual PAs is that they are also small business owners. They understand everything that goes into running your own business. It goes without saying that it is in their best interest to make sure your business thrives. Without you, their business wouldn’t exist. It is imperative therefore that they provide a top-class service to each and every one of their clients.


If you have any questions about working with a virtual PA; or if you would like to know more about how a virtual PA could support your business, then please get in touch.

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