What is a Virtual Assistant?

You can find this on any Virtual Assistant’s webpage, but sometimes a more in depth answer is needed than the three sentences you find there.  Even my FAQ page only has a one sentence answer!

But that’s not the answer I give when someone asks me what I do.  Most people have little understanding of what VA does or how they can help.  So over the past year, I’ve refined my elevator pitch to help people get a better understanding of what I do every weekday (and even some weekends too).


Hi, Kiri, nice to meet you.  What do you do for a living?

I run my own business as a Virtual Assistant.

Oh, what’s that?  I’ve never heard of it.

Virtual Assistants, or VA’s, are independent contractors who provide support to a single business owner, executive, or entrepreneur via their computer online, or as we like to say, “virtually”.  Some VA’s freelance and some own their own business.  I own my business, which means I’ve What is a virtual assistant?registered it and pay taxes on it.  I also try to get clients who I provide long term, continuous service to, as opposed to one-off projects here and there.

Interesting.  So what type of person would need a VA?

The types of people who use Virtual Assistants are companies that can’t afford a full-time Assistant or don’t have enough work for a full-time Assistant, but still need the support.  I also help single online business owners and authors/bloggers with tasks that they don’t have time for but again, can’t afford hiring someone full or part-time as an employee.  As a contractor, they don’t need to worry about paying my taxes or any kind of benefits so the savings are astronomical.

How do you help them if you are not in the office?

Everything I do is online or via the phone.  As long as I have a computer and Internet connection, I can assist you.  A lot of people don’t even know that I’m not in the company’s office.   I help set up meetings, book travel, and communicate via email.  I’m happy to get on the phone as well, but most is over email.

That’s a lot longer than a sentence or two!  It’s funny – when I started out and was just networking with no clients, it was hard to define what I do. Without the experience, it was as if I was reading from a script.  Now that I have been doing this for a while, I’m prepared and it’s easier to let the words flow.

I hope that helps clear up any questions you may have had about a Virtual Assistant and feel free to contact me with any more.