Being a virtual assistant can be overwhelming, especially when you have a different or similar set of tasks for several clients. And since you operate remotely, it is necessary to automate most of your activities using software tools for increased productivity.
This article highlights 10 staple tools and apps every virtual assistant should have in their arsenal. These tools will streamline your workflow and enrich your experience as a budding or advanced virtual assistant. But before we reveal them, let’s briefly go over the concept of virtual assistance.
Maintaining effective communication with your clients is essential as a virtual assistant, and Slack does a good job with that. It is one of the best instant messaging platforms for remote teams that allows you to communicate in real-time with clients and team members when working on a project.
You can distinguish between projects using “channels” and make them accessible to only authorized persons. Furthermore, Slack has an in-app call feature and fun custom emojis for more relaxed conversations. You can also share different files with one or more persons, including audio recordings and images.
2. Google Workspace
Google Workspace, also known as G-Suite, is a collection of various software tools with different features and modes of operation. However, you only need about eight of these tools as a virtual assistant. They include:
Calendly is a scheduling tool for managing events. However, it doesn’t suffice as an independent calendar. You need to integrate a calendar application like Google Calendar or iCloud calendar into the app to automate and streamline your meetings. It also has different ready-to-use time slots: 15, 30, and 60 minutes.
You can schedule a meeting with different dates and times, and your guests can indicate their availability on the calendar. Nonetheless, guests can still choose a precise available time irrespective of the time slots, but within the date range you provide.
In most cases, part of your administrative responsibilities as a virtual assistant would include graphic designing. Hence, it would be best to have a design tool. Canva is your go-to app for everything design and infographics. You can use it to design social media banners, flyers, carousel posts, cards, etc.
Most importantly, you can play around with the free Canva fonts, templates, images, and elements to create stunning designs.
Hootsuite is a community cum social media management app that enables you to monitor and navigate different social media platforms from one place instead of opening multiple tabs. It is compatible with Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, Pinterest, LinkedIn, and so on.
You can create, edit, format, and schedule content for each platform, check insights, and effectively manage your clients’ audience. Although the free version is great, the pro version gives you access to more comprehensive features, especially if you have a demanding client base.
Asana allows you to collaborate and manage projects seamlessly. If you work with a team, you can add members to your workplace on Asana, where you can monitor their workflow. You can also integrate Google Calendar and Google Drive into this tool to enable you to set reminders for tasks and events.
Furthermore, Asana lets you distinguish between projects or specific information using color codes and add attachments where necessary. For example, you can use red to indicate high-priority projects, yellow for ongoing projects, blue for the ones under review, and green for completed projects.
Time management is a top skill every virtual assistant should possess. Yet, you still need a tool to help you stay focused, especially if your pay is hourly. TimeDoctor lets you track your work and leisure time and see your daily accomplishments. It creates reports of the time spent on each project and task.
TimeDoctor also helps you manage distractions. It monitors your duration of web and app usage when working. And when you exceed the stipulated time, it notifies you with pop. It also alerts you when your PC stays idle longer than your usual working hours. Notwithstanding, you can manually edit the time when necessary.
MailChimp enables you to manage and communicate with your clients’ audiences and customers. When your clients launch a new product or service, you can use MailChimp to introduce these products to their clientele or target audience using newsletters or ad campaigns.
The tool enables you to segment your newsletters, send bulk emails, and analyze the performance of each ad campaign. You can also integrate other tools—like Shopify and Stripe—into the platform.
Ontraport is another marketing and CRM platform that helps you coordinate the business activities of your clients from one system. In other words, you can use Ontraport to introduce products to a client’s target audience and manage customer interactions simultaneously.
You can import and export contacts, create sales funnels, and automate marketing campaigns for business optimization. Besides, the interface is not intuitive for beginners. Nonetheless, you can get around it with a little practice. It is also available as a web-based platform and mobile application.
As a virtual assistant, you must always be on top of your content game, and using this tool will help you achieve that. Grammarly is a broad editing web-based platform that reviews text content for grammatical errors, verbosity, spellings, punctuations, plagiarism, and quality delivery.
The platform uses artificial intelligence to ensure your content is almost flawless and comprehensible. You can check if your content is engaging and the category of people it best suits. However, the free version is limited, and you will have to sign up for the paid version to leverage all the exciting features.
You can also save your documents and revert to them when necessary.
Stand Out in Your Career as a Virtual Assistant
Virtual assisting is a fast-growing industry; hence, we can expect a good saturation level in the near future. Acquiring core virtual assistant skills is imperative to remain relevant in the industry. However, combining these tools we have listed with your skill set will help you stand out in your career.
Finally, if you are new in the industry, you need to learn how to become a virtual assistant first before you start looking for tools. Consuming foundational information about the career path helps you not to misuse these tools in the long run.