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The use of technology as aid to make things more convenient can easily be seen in businesses across industries. it is an integral part of life, especially for business owners, employees, and entrepreneurs. Not only does it allow the invention of modern equipment, today’s digital world also enabled them to have their own assistants for anytime and anywhere through virtual assistants.

One of the best trends in business and entrepreneurship today is the beauty of outsourcing. With the internet and communication tools like emails and Skype, there are very little tasks that a virtual assistant can’t do. From email management, customer service, e-commerce management, social media management, and marketing, virtual assistants are required to have a wide skillset.

Do you need a Virtual Assistant?

Contrary to popular belief, not only big companies are entitled to hire virtual assistants. In fact, it is equally advantageous for small companies and start ups as well. If you are consistently finding yourself spending too much time stressing over the day-to-day tasks, or losing sight of your real business purpose, then it may be the right time to hire a virtual assistant.

Because you find yourself always too occupied and glued to your office seat 24/7, doing tedious tasks instead of focusing on more important things, you might miss out on greater opportunities—be it about work, or about your personal life. More unfortunately, saying no to a lot of them is also a sign you need to pass off some work to a virtual assistant. Often the work that got us to the place of this new opportunity no longer requires our full attention. Even if you can outsource.

The reasons vary for each person, but usually include an element of lack of time, lack of knowledge/skill, or lack of desire to complete the next step. More often than not, these are areas where a VA can make a difference. Often some research, proposed alternatives or simple prep-work can move a project forward and doesn’t require any unique business knowledge.

How can a Virtual Assistant help your business?

Virtual assistants work online, so it is a must that they have a general understanding of all-things-internet. From finding clients to performing tasks remotely, a vast knowledge of the internet and how they can use it to their advantage and make their work easier is a must skill for the job. While there is no definite answer and no cut and dry list of activities that a virtual assistant does and can do. Here are some of the tasks they can help you out with:

  • Research
  • Content creation, editing, and proofreading
  • Website design and maintenance
  • Graphic design and layout
  • Transcription
  • Customer support
  • Calendar management and arrangement
  • Project management
Where to look for great Virtual Assistants?

The great thing about finding virtual assistants is that it is greatly aided by technology. Websites and social networking become platforms of where businesses who are looking for virtual assistants can check out.

However, if you want to be more certain and have a peace of mind that you will acquire the services of a great virtual assistant who is a good match for your company’s needs, it would be better to seek the help of VA companies that source reliable and dependable people fit for the job.

OVA Virtual takes pride in employing Filipinas who are trained and are greatly qualified for the role—be it in project management, customer support, or general administration. The company is committed to giving you the best virtual assistant for your business among its outstanding pool of talent based not only on typical job requirements, like in-depth knowledge and comprehensive training.

Hiring virtual assistants has always been associated with work diversity. Furthermore, it suggests that your company is future forward and advanced when it comes to adapting newer and more convenient work regulations. This can affect your publicity and company image more positively, attracting more customers, investors, and employees in the long run. With the fear of counter productivity and wasted time in supervising tasks from a remote staff, some entrepreneurs become skeptical to take the plunge into hiring a virtual assistant.

SOURCES:

The post The Full Guide to Scaling Your Business in Partnership with a Virtual Assistant (Infographic) appeared first on OVA Virtual.

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One of the most important milestones for any business is the moment you acknowledge that you need more employees in order to function and operationalize. While this may mean that your company is growing, some can’t afford to hire more employees—at least for the time being.

The benefits of hiring virtual assistants enter the scene here. Having a Virtual Assistant will not only give you back the hours in your day, without having the additional burden of actually employing an additional part of your team. A virtual assistant can be of great help for busy professionals or business owners who need an extra hand to get the work done. But the big question is, how do you know when your business is ready to take the leap and hire a Virtual Assistant?

If you and your business agree with any of these 6 key signs, then it’s might time you consider hiring a Virtual Assistant.

Your business has started to grow and you’re ready for further expansion

The first sign that you should consider is the size of your business. Is it expanding as planned that you need a set of extra hands for you to keep everything running? Moreover, once you’ve had a taste of growth it’s only natural for businesses to expand further and grow bigger. Having a Virtual Assistant will help take care of the smaller tasks that are eating up your time so that you have more time to focus on the tasks that can help your business to grow.

You’re working 24/7

One of the benefits of having a business is the freedom it gives you to do anything at your own time. However, if you feel like 24 hours a day is still not enough for you to finish work, then it might be a sign that you need to look for a Virtual Assistant soon. By outsourcing, you can ensure that you only focus on the tasks that you perform best at, along with lightening your load so that you aren’t scrambling to complete tasks that you shouldn’t be doing in the first place.

You struggle with deadlines

Meeting deadlines is an important aspect of any business—regardless if you’re the boss or not. If you miss producing output one by one, then your clients will lose trust in you and may take it as unprofessionalism. The best way to make sure that you meet all deadlines is to have a reliable and punctual Virtual Assistant whom you can outsource tasks to that normally distract you and hold you back from reaching that all important deadline.

You say no to more work

There’s nothing more important for a business owner than seeing his or her company grow by having more clients who trust them. However, if the demand is too much to handle, some might resort to declining work. While no business owner likes to say no to clients and have them take their work elsewhere, it is better for you to decline than to be branded as a sloppy worker at the end of the day. The best way to overcome this obstacle is to outsource the right staff who can help with your workload and create systems in place to ensure that you never have to turn another paying customer away again.

You overcompensate and learn new skills that aren’t related to your expertise

If you find yourself watching tutorials or taking time to learn a new skill because nobody else will do it, then it’s definitely time to hire a virtual assistant for your business. Although it’s nice to learn a new skill, it’s not nice to be in a position where you have to learn how to do another job because your business requires it. You need to stick to what you are great at and outsource the rest. Moreover, you don’t need to learn that skill if it means you’re taking time away from doing more important things for your company.

You spend your time on managing not leading

Are you spending most of the time to manage websites, social media pages, updating databases, administering programs, and other tedious tasks that occupy a large chunk of your time? Then maybe it’s a sign that you need to pass some work to other people so you can focus on leading your team and not doing the nitty-gritty all the time.

Delegating out small tasks that eat up your time and energy is the most efficient way of leading a company and business to grow more. By hiring Virtual Assistants, you can ensure that you enjoy the process of seeing your company grow bigger and more steady, rather than being frantic about securing every deal and doing every little bit of the work.

SOURCES:

The post Is Your Business Ready For A Virtual Assistant? 6 Key Signs You are Ready To Hire One (Infographic) appeared first on OVA Virtual.

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As the year is finally coming to a close, many people are looking forward to the new year: after all, it is a brand new start, a new clean slate that everybody is in need of. However, what most of us seem to forget is the importance of reflecting and looking back to the year that has been. While a few would take note of their mistakes, regrets, and things to improve at, it is also essential to evaluate and list down the things you should be thankful for.

It may be a promotion or a brand new job, or a new home, new car, or additional property. Some may even be thankful just for good health and the company of their loved ones and family. Regardless of reason, it is very important to take time and reflect on the things that you’re thankful for in life.

But why should we limit it to just a few weeks in the year? After all, gratitude is a muscle we should strengthen year-round to make us healthier, happier humans. In fact, being thankful is a trait and habit that when practiced in your daily life, can make all the difference on how you see life and how you live life—and science can back it up.

From a scientific perspective, gratitude is an emotion that can result in long-lasting positivity. It may even eliminate half or your stress away. According to Robert Emmons, a leading researcher, gratitude has two key stages: acknowledging the goodness in life, and recognizing who to thank for it.

People differ in feeling and expressing gratitude. Some may say ‘thank you’ a lot, while others may steer away from the verbal expression and keep a journal instead, listing down the things they are grateful for in a day. Experts say that keeping a gratitude journal is a healthy practice for your mind and soul. It is a good exercise which serves many purposes, including encouraging calm, lowering stress levels and giving new perspectives.

Gratitude makes you empathetic.

There’s no contest to it: gratitude is a selfless act. When you take time and make it a priority to give thanks to the people around you, you start to appreciate even the simplest things and acts made to you by the people around you. In fact, it may even lead you to realizing and recognizing what you have that others don’t.

Having empathy is very important, especially now when most people tend to forget and take for granted the simple joys they have in life. Many fail to see how much they are blessed with having a roof, having food to eat, being surrounded by family, and being happy, in a time when almost everything seems to be a competition.

Gratitude is good for your health.

According to one research, grateful people reported feeling healthier, both mentally and physically. Specifically, those who were grateful were 25% happier than those who weren’t. And this is a very important thing to practice in the workplace.

Many studies have found and linked how the employees’ wellbeing and feelings affect their productivity and motivation. Researches show that employees who are shown that they are appreciated are more productive by 50%, caring for your employees’ well-being is simply the right thing to do.

Gratitude helps you become more self-aware.

Gratitude challenges you to reflect in the moment instead of always thinking about the future, which is a very important habit to practice in a very fast-paced world. When you feel and practice gratitude, you pay attention to the small details, on what’s going on in your life. Self-awareness is a key ingredient to being successful in your career.

Gratitude keeps relationships strong.

One of the most important and core foundations of a relationship is being thankful. Practicing gratitude on the daily helps you strengthen personal and professional relationships. A study found that people who are more expressive of their gratitude towards others also tend to be more forgiving and understanding, helping them preserve their connections and relationship.

Always remember that thanking someone or expressing gratitude will not take anything from you but will help others gain something—be it a sense of pride in what they do, happiness, or even a pat in their back that they are doing something good.

At the same time, being grateful helps your personality and own wellbeing. Rather than complaining over the things you can’t control, change, and get, why not just think about the things you have enough of—family, friends, and basic needs. Keep in mind that when you are thankful, content and happy for the countless blessings that you do have, that’s how life will be for you- content and happy.

SOURCES:

The post Be Thankful: The Benefits of Being Grateful Year-Round appeared first on OVA Virtual.

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The Holidays is just around the corner, and if this means something to small business owners, it is the sign that another year is preparing for its close. While the approaching new year may serve and signal a new and clean slate for companies, entrepreneurs can also use this time to reflect on the previous year’s mistakes and think of ways to mitigate risks this coming 2019.

Here are 9 suggested New Year’s Checklist for Small Businesses you may want to check out to make sure that 2019 is better than 2018:

The post 9 To Do’s for 2019: A New Year’s Checklist for Small Businesses appeared first on OVA Virtual.

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It’s not hard to understand why flexible work, open offices, and hiring of remote employees have been gaining popularity and praises in the recent years. Businesses and companies with a mobile workforce are found to be more cost-efficient and practical—they save money on office space and tech equipment, without sacrificing productivity and time.

On the other hand, remote workers such as virtual assistants, can enjoy the freedom to work from anywhere they find more conducive and comfortable, and at the same time, cut down on time and money spent on transportation. Most importantly, they can have a greater sense of work-life balance.

While there are many benefits and rewards to outsourcing certain business processes to offshore service providers, there are also risks and trade-offs to this strategy, similar to hiring actual office employees. Managing employees you don’t see regularly—or you don’t see in person, comes with a set of unique challenges and struggles for you as their employer and manager.

Here are the most common difficulties when managing virtual assistants and how you can overcome them:

The post Challenges to Managing Virtual Assistants and How to Overcome Them (Infographic) appeared first on OVA Virtual.

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The holidays are supposed to be a time of celebrations with family, friends, and loved ones. As the holiday season approaches, many employees and business owners look forward to spending some time off work and finally resting for a couple of days before welcoming the new year stronger than ever. After all, the Holidays should be spent with the ones you love, not in front of your office computer.

However, not everyone has the luxury to lie low during the most wonderful time of the year. Many business owners take advantage of the fact that during this time, consumers are willing to spend more money than usual, lifting the demand in almost all industries.

Today, even small businesses can take a break during the holidays without halting their operations. Thanks to virtual assistants, it can be business as usual as you spend some downtime with the ones you love. Here are some ways they can help:

Some customers need you now more than ever

While it is normal for many business establishments to close down over the holidays, having a virtual assistant to answer to your customers’ calls and emails might save their holidays. Depending upon their needs, they might not be able to wait until you resume operations after New Year’s Day—or even later. Imagine going back to work just to hear hundreds of customer service calls from them that you’ve failed to attend to. Having this extra measure of service may mean a lot to your customers, which will definitely set you apart from your competitors.

Moreover, Virtual Assistants can also accept orders during the holidays. Keep in mind that many customers are feeling more generous during this time of the year and research shows that most impulse buys happen during the Christmas season. It will be too bad if no one answered their call.

End Strong, Start Strong

If you close down your business over the holidays for a couple of days, chances are there are piles of emails unanswered, numerous voice messages, and other notices that can be too overwhelming to keep up with. Having a virtual assistant over the break will let you know exactly who called and how the call was handled, what the emails are about, letting you continue business as if you never took some time off.

At the same time, virtual assistants can also make the shift to the New Year as easy as possible with no unread emails, no returned calls, and no disappointed customer at the end of the line. Instead of starting the brand new year going through what you left behind, you can focus on directing your business to new goals and stepping up to the next level.

Manage your year-end inventory

With so many things going on at the same time, you may forget about completing your business’ year end inventory. Some business owners find doing inventories a very tedious task that requires a lot of time and energy, which often leads to unfinished records. Luckily, virtual assistants can also help you with that.

Assistance with personal matters

In addition to making you look good to your customers and keeping your stocks listed, virtual assistant help with some of your personal matters this season. They can do tasks that entrepreneurs often look past because of their busy schedules.

Virtual Assistants can help business owners make all other aspects of their life flow as smoothly as possible. Whether that’s organizing a busy social calendar or managing travel plans, sending Christmas cards or booking the caterer for a family reunion, VAs got you covered.

It’s always a good idea to take some time off over the holidays to spend time with family and friends, reflect on the year, and mentally recharge and prepare for upcoming challenges in the next year. But for many business owners and entrepreneurs, leaving work behind is no option. A virtual assistant can be a lifesaver for your personal and professional life not only this season but in any time of the year.

SOURCES:

The post Virtual Assistant – Your Perfect Asset for the Holiday Season appeared first on OVA Virtual.

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The virtual industry in Australia is booming now more than ever. Many business, companies, and industries have been greatly employing the use of technology to their advantage—in any possible way. There’s no doubt about it most of the businesses in the Australian market are becoming more virtual. From meeting international clients, buying supplies, and even hiring remote employees and virtual assistants.

While building offshore teams used to be routine for only companies, the technological shift enables smaller industry players such as start-ups and small to medium companies to enjoy this perk as well.

Today’s trend in the Australian market is outsourcing help from other countries. According to recent reports, over 25,000 Australian jobs were outsourced to BPO companies based in different countries, especially South East Asian countries, in 2017. Experts predict that this trend is likely to continue in the near future with the figure soaring to 50,000 this year. The Australian economy and business sector are high-wage, high cost. In order for businesses to be more cost-effective, they need to be smarter.

One of the reasons why many businesses are hiring Virtual Assistants is because of its cost-effectiveness.  A Virtual Assistant is an independent contractor who is hired to manage the day-to-day tasks that you can’t handle yourself. Sometimes you simply don’t have the time to do everything by yourself, and sometimes you lack the skills to do it right. Either way, a qualified VA can help you take a load off which in turn allows you to do more important things that will help you grow your business.

Virtual Assistants specialize in many different areas, including:

  • Social media marketing
  • Online marketing
  • Email answering and sorting
  • Updating your website, uploading content
  • Creating personalized content, business presentations and proposals
  • Internet research
  • Event management
  • Travel bookings
  • Bookkeeping

While virtual assistant services vary from business to business, there has been a trend in the industry on which services and work type is the most common across companies.

Some experts say that while there can be many types of qualifications and job descriptions for Virtual Assistants in Australia, they can be grouped into three general categories: administrative, technical, and creative. Here are some of the most in-demand virtual assistant services for Australian businesses:

Administrative

Virtual Assistants who do administrative work are in charge of data processing, gathering, input, etc. While this part of business is regarded as one of the most menial, nobody can deny that it is also the backbone of most businesses, and should be given priority and importance.

Administrative skills include:

  • Customer service
  • Email management
  • Task management or project management
  • Calendar management
  • Data entry
  • Online research
  • Updating blogs or social media accounts

Customer Service and Support 

Successful companies have always reiterated the importance of a great customer service and support for businesses in any field.  A great customer service and support from a company can make or break it and affect its reputation and business in the long run.

Besides keeping the present customers loyal, great customer support inspires word of mouth publicity. That’s why businesses with satisfied customers usually grow promptly and exponentially.

Customer Service and Support skills include:

  • Handling phone calls with customers
  • Receiving feedback
  • Assisting customers
  • Answering customer enquiries or passing them on to the appropriate department
  • Giving information and helping to solve customer
  • Selling products and taking orders.

Creative

Investing in the creative aspect of your business is as important as focusing on the technical aspect. This is what many business owners tend to forget when dealing with the creative side and work requirements of their business.

From designing your website, logos, website content, press releases, to bigger responsibilities like being in charge of your brand identity, company owners should acknowledge that hiring the right people who should focus on this facet of business is important and crucial in the long run.

Creative Skills Include:

  • Website design
  • Graphic designing
  • Content writing
  • Marketing
  • Brand development

Hiring Virtual Assistants offshore can not only help Australian businesses minimize operating and labour costs, but it can also contribute to the development of the local economy. At the same time, Virtual assistants can not only help you with the work piling up in your inbox and office tables, but they can also benefit everyone in your organization. Adding a virtual assistant in your team can be one of the best decisions you make as a business owner. They provide support, experience, and skills when you need them, and can become a critical part of your workforce.

SOURCES:

The post The Most In-Demand Virtual Assistant Services for Australian Businesses appeared first on OVA Virtual.

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The world’s business and employment paradigm have completely shifted, all thanks to the ever advancing technology and innovation in the workspace landscape. In fact, large companies and multi-national corporations are not the only ones dominating the industry, start up companies are also on the rise.

Experts say that it is definitely a good time to be involved in the start up scene. They have predicted—and still standing by the prediction that this type of business will not be slowing down anytime soon.

It may be more common now more than ever, there is no denying that this culture stirs its own set of challenges and problems which its founders should face and address if they want to stick around.

Here are some of the issues and concerns start up companies face in order to persist in the ever competitive market:

The post Startup Struggle: The Most Common Challenges Entrepreneurs Face Today and How to Overcome Them appeared first on OVA Virtual.

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One of the most common trends in the workplace—online and offline—today is hiring project-based workers or outsourcing. Project-based workers or contractual are people who work for a specific number of weeks or months until the task is finished.

While it can be the most ideal hiring scheme for many, there are also disadvantages of choosing this option for your job posting:

Picking the best candidates and making them stay

It’s no secret: really good VAs are in high demand.  While there are a number of applicants and VA hopefuls in marketplaces, of course employers want to select the best among the rest. When bosses get lucky and they hired a desirable remote worker for them, the next challenge is making them stay and be available for the upcoming ones.

One of the benefits of working as a project-based worker is the luxury of being a free agent. While this is a pro on the side of the worker, it can be a miss on the side of the employer. Project-based workers are not tenured and are not required to stay loyal to a single boss, a single company, or a single project.

Simply put, your company’s success is not really their main priority, which can be a problem down the road.

Job Hunting and Security

Project-based workers are always on the hunt for the next job. Since there is no such thing as job security in this industry, they are always on the lookout for their next booking or gig.

It’s not a bad thing for many. But some may experience unpleasant and unsatisfactory work because other project-based workers can be distracted while they finish their job.

An independent contractors’ job is to develop their business. You need to make sure they’re available on your schedule, not theirs. They may be great when they’re accessible, but be prepared with a Plan B if they’re not. Many companies recruit a team of freelancers, so they always have a backup.

Camaraderie and Miscommunication

If you’re looking to develop clientele, a freelancer might not be the best choice. In-house employees are aware of everything that’s going on in the company and can leverage that knowledge to your advantage when building relationships with clients. Freelancers don’t have that access.

What amount of time will you need to invest in training? If there is a long lead time for them to get up and running, using that investment on a full-time employee might be a better option. And if the position requires oversight, hire an employee. A freelancer might choose to perform the work outside of normal business hours when you’re not able to monitor their progress.

The Biggest Problem With Project-Based Workers

By far the biggest problem with project-based workers that most business owners don’t realize is the turnover. When you hire a project based worker, it means 100% turnover in your business.  It’s hard to run a business when people who work for you are turning over all the time.  It’s mentally draining and doesn’t really ever let you get things off your plate.

Hiring a full-time worker allows you to automate full tasks and systems over the long term.  It allows you to spend time and effort teaching someone because you know that teaching and training will pay off over and over again.  With a project worker, you can’t do that.  Any time spent training is wasted as soon as that project is done. Plus, it takes the same amount of effort to hire a full-time person as it does a project based person.

SOURCES:

The post The Bad Side of Hiring Project-Based Workers appeared first on OVA Virtual.

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What Is A Virtual Assistant?

Virtual Assistants are changing the world. In a world undeniably dominated by technology, Virtual Assistants, or VAs continuously change the work and business landscape in any industry, in any country.  Think of VAs as the combination of executive assistants merged with remote workers.

They perform tasks to help their employers manage their time better, doing menial and routinary errands that maybe too much for them to handle. VAs usually do the traditional tasks associated with administrative work. However, the list of services that a VA can offer is amazingly diverse, depending on the platform and the contracts that bind them with their employer.

What Services Does a Virtual Assistant Provide?

While there is no definite answer and no cut and dry list of activities that a virtual assistant does and can do.

Here are just some of the tasks they can offer to do, depending on their skills, interests, and capabilities:

The post Everything You Need to Know on How to Become a Virtual Assistant appeared first on OVA Virtual.

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