What Is a Virtual Executive Assistant?

A virtual executive assistant is a generalist who can help you with a variety of tasks that can be done online and on a computer. A virtual executive assistant can do pretty much anything that an in-person executive assistant can do, except for tasks which require a physical presence such as attending the front desk.

A virtual executive assistant is sometimes referred to by other titles such as virtual assistant, administrative assistant, admin assistant, virtual secretary, virtual receptionist, virtual office assistant, professional assistant, remote assistant and so on. These are all variations of the same role.

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How Much Does a Virtual Executive Assistant Cost?

A virtual executive assistant based in the US can easily cost anywhere from $15 to $25 per hour. Rates are higher for virtual assistants with a college degree, with prices starting at $30 a hour for most providers. Furthermore, as of this writing Congress has proposed raising the federal minimum wage to $15 a hour, which means virtual executive assistant rates in the US are bound to leap higher.

However, you can also outsource this role and hire talented, hard-working, fluent virtual assistants from the Philippines or India for 70% to 80% off US rates.

A virtual executive assistant is a generalist who can help you with a variety of tasks that can be done online and on a computer. A virtual executive assistant can do pretty much anything that an in-person executive assistant can do, except for tasks which require a physical presence such as attending the front desk.

You can work with a business process outsourcing company like Jobstob to hire a virtual executive assistant with a high speed internet connection, fast typing skills and English fluency for a fraction of the cost. For example, you could hire effectively the same executive virtual assistant that would cost you $20 a hour on average in the US for only $6 a hour in the Philippines through Jobstob.

What Can a Virtual Executive Assistant Do?

A human executive virtual assistant can handle a variety of tasks from managing your email inbox, answering your phone, setting appointments, managing your calendar, scheduling meetings, doing market research, managing your social media channels, providing price quotes, basic data entry, booking travel, proofreading and editing, expense reporting and a variety of other tasks.

A virtual executive assistant is a generalist who can help you with a variety of tasks that can be done online and on a computer. A virtual executive assistant can do pretty much anything that an in-person executive assistant can do, except for tasks which require a physical presence such as attending the front desk.

A virtual executive assistant can do almost any task that can be done online, by phone or on a computer. As long as you’re willing to explain and demonstrate what you’d like them to do, a virtual executive assistant will be capable of replicating the task and repeating processes over and over again.

Think of a virtual executive assistant as a low cost, human version of artificial intelligence (AI). We’re sure that one day AI will be powerful enough to handle many of the tasks handled today by virtual executive assistants; however, the technology today is far from what is required to replicate what a human virtual executive assistant can do.

In fact, with the advent of free screen sharing technologies such as Skype, an executive virtual assistant can pretty much do anything that you do on a computer.

Pro Tip: Don’t have time to train someone from scratch? You can work with one of our experienced virtual executive assistants who all come with existing industry experience, and who undergo our training course before working with you. Furthermore, we conduct extensive continuing training and education for all of our virtual assistants so you can focus on growing your business.

What Can a Virtual Executive Assistant Not Do?

A virtual executive assistant cannot do tasks that require a physical presence such as attending meetings, staffing reception areas and front desks, and hand delivering documents. Furthermore, you cannot ask a virtual executive assistant to do tasks that a normal admin assistant or intern might do such as fetch coffee for the team. If you require menial tasks like this to be done, we highly recommend hiring summer interns to do simple physical tasks like this.

Another thing to be aware of is that you can’t as easily talk to your virtual executive assistant because you can’t just yell across the office and be heard. It does take a little bit more of an effort to chat; however, modern technology has made it much easier to collaborate today with your virtual employees.

Pro Tip: Even though you can’t just start talking to someone sitting next to you (though perhaps that’s a good thing as you’ll have less distractions), you can easily chat with your virtual team through secure messaging applications such as Telegram. Furthermore, you can easily have face-to-face video calls with your virtual employees for free through applications such as Skype or even Google Hangouts.

What to Look for When Hiring a Virtual Executive Assistant

You’ll want to look for signs that your new potential hire speaks fluent English, has a high degree of comprehension of both written and spoken English, is educated, has experience in your field, has a high speed internet connection, can type fast and is able to work in the same time zone as you.

Fluency in English – You’ll want to make sure your new virtual executive assistant speaks fluent English. After all, he or she may be picking up your phone calls and answering your emails, which means he or she will be representing you. There’s no reason to let on to clients automatically that you’ve outsourced your executive assistant’s role. As a result, seeing a video resume is the fastest way we’ve found to quickly gauge whether a foreign virtual executive assistant speaks English well enough to be hired. Check out our extensive selection of video resumes at Jobstob.com to get started.

English Comprehension – You’ll want to make sure your virtual assistant has a high degree of spoken and written English comprehension. That’s because many virtual assistants have excellent spoken English because of years of experience in the call center industry, but as a result they haven’t had as much English writing experience. You’ll want to test this on your own, or work with one of Jobstob’s pre-vetted candidates who have already passed our proprietary series of tests.

Higher Education – You’ll want to make sure your virtual assistant has some form of education, ideally a bachelor’s degree at least. That’s because overseas candidates with higher education will be more likely to have excellent English. You’ll be surprised at how many candidates you can find from places like the Philippines with even master’s degrees who are willing to work as a virtual executive assistant. Just remember, someone with a college education in the Philippines will likely work harder and be more appreciative than someone with a college education in the Western world.

Industry Experience – You’ll ideally want to find an assistant who has worked in your field before. This will save you precious time in having to explain basic industry jargon and terms to them. For example, if you’re a Realtor looking for a real estate virtual assistant, you can avoid having to explain what a buyer’s agent and the MLS is if the person has worked in the industry before.

High Speed Internet – Make sure that your new hire has a modern, high speed internet connection with both a high download and upload rate. Broadband speed today is commonly defined as 25 MB per second for downloads, and 3 MB per second for uploads. While you don’t need to be a stickler about those limits especially when interviewing candidates from developing countries like the Philippines, you’ll need to make sure that their internet speed isn’t too slow or unreliable. Remember that countries like the Philippines have more frequent power outages and occasional typhoons which can cause internet and power outages. So ask them how reliable their internet provider is and how often the power goes out in their town.

Typing Speed – You’ll want to make sure that your new assistant has at least an average typing speed, which typically means 40 to 50 words per minute with minimal errors. You can gauge this yourself, or work with one of our pre-vetted candidates who have already undergone a variety of our typing speed tests.

Time Zone – It’s critically important to only interview virtual assistants who are able to work in the same time zone as you. This means you’ll need to confirm whether candidates based in the Philippines or India have experience and are comfortable with the night shift, otherwise known colloquially as the graveyard shift.

Save 70% When You Outsource With Jobstob

Full-time, fluent, English speaking virtual assistants, designers, video editors and salespeople for $6 a hour.

Hire a Virtual Executive Assistant

Hire a fluent, English speaking virtual executive assistant based in the Philippines through Jobstob for a fraction of the price.

We’ve re-imagined and simplified business process outsourcing from soup to nuts. Start by browsing our extensive selection of video resumes, and contact us once you’ve found a candidate you like. Or, we’d be happy to do a custom search for you.

We’ll source, screen, interview and test candidates to make the best use of your time. Once hired, we’ll take care of everything from a free trial period to payroll, time tracking, compliance and HR so you can focus on growing your business.

Hire a Virtual Assistant for $6 Per Hour

Save 70% when you outsource with Jobstob. Highly qualified virtual assistants, designers, video editors and more for a fraction of the price of a domestic hire.