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How To Become a Home Based Virtual Assistant

How To Become a Home Based Virtual Assistant

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This is how to become a virtual assistant with no experience

Becoming a successful virtual assistant isn’t easy, but with hard work and a bit of self-belief, you can turn your small business into something amazing.

Offering virtual assistance and business support to small and medium-sized businesses can give you the flexible lifestyle that you crave. It’s certainly not an easy path though and when you own your own business, it does come with its own set of challenges, which we layout below.

This is post is going to tell you everything you need to know if you’re thinking of becoming a Virtual Assistant. We hope this post will help you get your first client quickly and help you navigate the mistakes that many virtual assistants make the first time around. 

If you are looking for more working from home jobs then have a look at:

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What is a virtual assistant?

A virtual assistant is someone who works from home, who helps a business owner out with all the nitty-gritty admin jobs that a client doesn’t have time to do themselves.

This could be administrative tasks, a project management task, or customer service help. You could be doing anything from scheduling social media to creating marketing images to just answering emails or amending spreadsheets.

A virtual assistant is useful for any size business, and as someone who’s worked both sides, as an employer and employee, most virtual assistants are very flexible and work on an hour-by-hour payment basis.

What do I need to become a virtual assistant UK?

Being a virtual assistant works because you get to work from home around your family. Start by deciding on the hours you can work. Lay your business hours out clearly on your social media platforms or website. Knowing you can not work full time or certain hours helps to set the expectation with a client straight away.

No client is going to expect you to be available all the time. Know what you can do and be honest.

To become a virtual assistant you will need:

A laptop with Google Drive – Google Drive is free and gives you access to Word, PowerPoint, and Excel. It’s also a great way of keeping your documents safe as you work with different clients.

A payment system – We use Paypal but you can use any payment system, even BACS. You will need to send an invoice and keep track of all the hours you are working.

We have made the Virtual Assistant Essential Tool Kit which has everything you need to start up as a virtual assistant.

This is a tool kit for virtual assistants who want to plan their time better.

The Virtual Assistant Essential Tool Kit includes:

A list of Virtual Assistant essential tools

Invoice template (Word)

Time Card spreadsheet (Excel with pre-made formulas)

Invoice spreadsheet (Excel with pre-made formulas)

Blog post promotion spreadsheet (Excel)

Engagement questions for most niches (Excel)

Facebook schedule (Excel)

The Virtual Assistant Essential Tool Kit can help you land your first client, and keep you on track for when it’s time to invoice.

£4.99Add to cart

Website and social media channels – You need a way to help businesses and freelancers find you. You may find it easier to build a WordPress website and blog to get noticed. Read our post here on How to Start a Blog in the UK. This walks you through not having a website to starting one and publishing.

Social media channels are so important. We landed our first client with just a Facebook page. Join a few local Facebook groups and do the odd task and ask for a review.

How do I become a virtual assistant with no experience UK?

If you really think you have no experience at all, then think again! Many of us have transferable skills that can be put towards becoming a virtual assistant.

If you browse social media like Facebook and Twitter then that can be used. You will know what people like, what people share, and how to post. Many businesses need your knowledge!

Are you people-focused? Then you’ll be great at organizing and offering great customer service.

Do you like numbers? Then invoices and data inputting is for you.

If you are a creative person then creating content and marketing may be for you.

As a virtual assistant, you can do anything, from the comfort of your own home and in front of the TV.

Just a few work from home admin jobs you could do are:

Answering emails – Mnay companies or freelancers just don’t have time to answer all their emails and give a meaningful response. You may be tasked with customer service or even setting up templates in Gmail to help the client answer their own emails quickly.

Image creation and insertion – This could be using Canva or another imaging software. Many companies need images for their social media channels or website.

Content creator – Creating content is very time-consuming and for some businesses a real minefield. You may be tasked with coming up with a monthly calendar of ideas or asked to help improve a social channel.

Social media management – Your client may need help posting on social media or help to gain more clients.

Transcription – Your client may have videos they need transcribing for their website or for other uses. This involves you listening to the audio piece and typing out the words.

Event management – They may need you to make phone calls to plan or book events for their staff.

Personal Scheduler – You may need to help plan a freelancer’s day to help make them more efficient.

Typist – You may be asked to write a blog post or a letter.

Formatting documents – The writing may be done but you may need to format it for the current media.

Researcher – You may be asked to research a project and be able to show your results.

Bookkeeping – You may be asked to look over a spreadsheet and format it correctly or input data that you have been given.

Newsletter creation – You may be asked to set up or maintain an online newsletter.

Social media scheduler – The social media posts may be written but you may need to schedule them for the correct times and days.

Auditing marketing materials – A fresh set of eyes always helps to spot spelling and grammar mistakes.

Creating spreadsheets – You may need to help your client become more efficient with spreadsheets.

Invoicing – They may need help invoicing clients.

Letter writing – You may be asked to write letters or emails.

Creating PowerPoint presentations – You may need to use notes from your client and put them into a presentation that the client can understand.

Phone answering service – You may need to be a remote receptionist that helps to answer and divert calls to the correct person.

Data entry – You may be given a lot of spreadsheets and need to sort through them to make them make sense.

Whatever your experience, there will be something you can offer someone, you just need to market it in the right way. Here are 101 no-experience needed home-based jobs to help you decide.

At the very beginning, you need to do your research. Read everything you can about what it’s like to be a Virtual Assistant.

Decide how you want to work, when, and what services you would like to offer.

Every Virtual Assistant has different skills so you need to come up with yours first. Are you good at making marketing materials look good? Are you quick on social media and know your way around? Are spreadsheets your thing?

It’s important that you go into becoming a Virtual Assistant with your eyes wide open. you have to know how many hours you want to work and stick to it, or before you know it, it will skyfall and you’ll end up working all hours and be unhappy.

Get organised with The Virtual Assistant Essential Tool Kit.

This is the ultimate spreadsheet pack for your virtual assistant business. This is for mums who have never been a Virtual Assistant before but who would like to start working from home.

The Virtual Assistant Essential Tool Kit includes:

A list of Virtual Assistant essential tools

Invoice template (Word)

Time Card spreadsheet (Excel with pre-made formulas)

Invoice spreadsheet (Excel with pre-made formulas)

Blog post promotion spreadsheet (Excel)

Engagement questions for most niches (Excel)

Facebook schedule (Excel)

The Virtual Assistant Essential Tool Kit can help you land your first client, and keep you on track for when it’s time to invoice.

So what are you waiting for? 🙂

£4.99Add to cart

Can I afford to be a virtual assistant?

Even though there isn’t any outlay, it takes time to invoice your clients and wait for them to pay you.

Every virtual assistant charges different and it will depend on your skillset.

Some charge per hour (like me) and that can start from £15 anything up to £100. Most start at £15 and up their rates as they go through clients and more experience.

You need to work out how much you need vs hours you can work and find a point that is going to work for you. Some Virtual Assistants do charge per project, so that may be a better bet if the work is going to be long-term or on just one project.

Remember to keep track of everything. Expenses, hours worked and what you did, as when it comes to invoicing at the end of the month, there is no way you are going to remember everything you did or when you worked.

Once you start making money, you must register with HMRC to tell them that you are working from home or, if you decide to set up as a limited company, then register with Companies House and start to look for an accountant.

How do I get my first virtual assistant client?

Getting your first client can be hard, especially if you don’t come from a digital background but in no way is it impossible.

Start by adding your details to your LinkedIn account and talk to as many people as possible. Share your profile or website if you’ve made one.

There are many websites that can help you to get your first client.

People Per Hour – People Per Hour is a content mill site that lets you post your skill set and apply for freelance jobs. It is a great way to get a few reviews and see how you go as a virtual assistant.

They do take a big cut of your earnings though and if the client has an issue, they normally side with the client over the seller.

Saying that we have used them many a time and have had no issues at all.

Fiverr – Fiverr is another content mill site that lets you post your skill set. You set up “gigs” with what you will do for a set amount of money. So for example “I will write a 50 word Facebook post.” You set the price and they will advertise it.

You can also apply for gigs that clients have set. Again, they do take a big chunk out of your profit but it’s a great way to get started and we have had repeat business from Fiverr.

Both of these companies are a race to the bottom but they will start you off with some contacts to help you get a feel of what it’s like to work from home as a virtual assistant.

Take the plunge and start pitching for work as well. Join blogging groups and ask if anyone is looking for a Virtual Assistant. You can always say that the first 5 to sign up will get your services for £15 an hour if they leave a review after a month. Then up it and say the next 5 will be at £23, then £25.

The worst that can happen is that it takes you a while to build up your client list and you may have to take on another home-based part-time job while you build your virtual assistant business up.

Remember there are millions of businesses in the world that will hire you, it’s just down to you to find new clients.

Learn As You Go

As an industry that changes all the time, it’s really important to stay up to date on any changes that happen online or within your niche.

You can do this by learning yourself or by taking an online course.

Keeping your skills up to date and varied is really important and highlighting you’re up to date skill set could be what makes a client pick you other another.

Yes, it does sound like you need to be a Supermum to be a high-earning virtual assistant but you really don’t. With a small bit of organization, you can bring in the pounds while still looking after the kids. (I know because that’s what I do!)

I’d be lying if I said that being a Virtual Assistant was easy, it’s not. I work every single evening from 7 pm to however long it takes to get the work done.

It’s totally worth it though, as it means that I’m at home with the kids all the time, so if anything happens I can drop a client if I need to and be there for the family.

My Top 5 Tips For When You Land Your First Virtual Assistant Client From Home

Set up a Facebook page and ask everyone and anyone you’ve worked with to leave you a 5-star review. It is mega cringe, but it’s those reviews that will give you a leg up and give you something to link to when a client asks for references.

Set up a separate email address so you can track potential clients emails quickly.

Shout about your business to everyone and share it in all the Facebook groups, especially in Facebay and business groups.

Set up a spreadsheet divided by month with the client name on the top and the number of hours you do every day. That way when it comes to invoicing you can just copy and paste the information over.

Have an invoice spreadsheet ready for when you declare. It can be as simple as the date, client name, and the amount so when you need to declare, you have a final amount without having to find all last year’s invoices.

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I really hope this post has helped you. Please do get in touch and let me know how you are getting on.

Laura x

If you enjoyed this post and would like some more money making ideas from home, including ways to freelance, start a blog or even earn from your phone, then head over to my making money section here on Savings 4 Savvy Mums where you’ll find over 30 money making posts dedicated to helping you earn more from home and become more financially stable as a family. There’s also tips in my Money Saving Mums Facebook group. You could also pop over and follow my money making Pinterest boards for lots more ways you can earn money from home; Money Making Mums and Working from Home Jobs for Mums.

This is how to become a home based virtual assistant with no experience. Learn how to gain your first client and what to charge by Laura at Savings 4 Savvy Mums

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Emma Maslin

Sunday 6th of May 2018

I’ve been trying to persuade my sister she could be a great VA as she juggles 3 kids and lots of trips to GOSH - am going to send her this post and get her to download your starter kit :-)

Sarah Banks

Sunday 15th of April 2018

This is a very interesting article Laura. However I think it is also a little misleading as there is no mention of the legal requirements of becoming a VA. It is essential you are properly insured, comply with GDPR, have contracts in place to protect yourself and your clients as well as complying with AML if you are going to be offering bookkeeping. Being a VA is a great option but please make sure you set up your business correctly.

Savings4SavvyMums

Sunday 15th of April 2018

Thanks for you comment Sarah. I agree about making sure that everyone does their research first before jumping into becoming a VA. It is a very wide role and depending on what you want to do, does depend on how deep down the rabbit hole you should go.

Mummy in a TuTu

Thursday 22nd of March 2018

Such a useful post Laura. I'd have loved this a few years ago!!

Savings4SavvyMums

Friday 23rd of March 2018

Thank you so much! I really hope it helps a mum who wants to break out and work from home x