As a Virtual Assistant, you face a computer majority of your working hours. Working most of the time in front of your computer, you must know how to operate the basic programs and applications since your computer is your primary work tool for Virtual Assistant work. You may also need to know a little basic computer maintenance as well. These are important because if your computer goes down, both you and your client’s work will face a significant downtime.
One primary job of a virtual assistant is as a Content Contributor. It is either as a ghost contributor, creative writer or layout artist. With these tasks, you need a web publishing tool like Microsoft Word, Microsoft Publisher or Wordpad. Knowledge of the basic to intermediate functions of these applications would be your magic wands to do good as a virtual assistant. These tools allow you to produce a wide array of jobs. The list is endless: from creating books, brochures, business cards, calendars, letterheads, logos, magazines, newsletters, postcards and even websites
From basic web publishing, you can also learn advanced graphics applications to have a better grasp of the interactive design space. One of the most sought-after skills for Virtual Assistant work is being an adept in Photoshop, Corel or Quark. Being equipped with skills on either of the three makes one virtual assistant a prized asset. Having control of your interactive design space is very easy when you have skills using graphic design applications. Like the palm of your hand, design, manipulations, and conceptualization are easy to complete.
There are also a lot of clients in need for people to do Data Entry work. In reality, the competition is very high for this gig. However, it is an additional armament of an online services provider if you possess the skills needed for data entry. Data entry tasks require typing and entering data into forms. Some data entry work needs verifying and then editing current information. Some need to do proofreading and updating databases. Knowledge of Microsoft Excel, Google Sheets, and other spreadsheet applications is vital for this role.
On top of having proficiency in specific applications and programs, it is also important to have good communications skills and a good grasp of the English language if you want to excel as a VA. It is imperative for a virtual assistant to have good communication skills, both written and spoken. Being away from your client, the medium for communication is mainly through email, web talk and instant messaging. You may be required to communicate to customers and your client constantly for feedback and follow-ups. Your client may also ask you do tasks on his behalf like calling customers for appointments, confirm meetings or relay messages of customers to the “boss.” The understanding and delivery of messages are vital for Virtual Assistant work. One miscommunication would hamper trust and credibility. Therefore, your writing and verbal communications skills should be excellent.