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What kinds of tasks should you give your VA?

Personal assistant

  • Who they are: A personal assistant is a generalist. They will help with a wide variety of tasks, but none of them will be in their primary skillset. This can mean anything from doing research to scheduling meetings to handling customer service inquiries.
  • How you know if you need one: You need a personal assistant if you want someone to take over the administrative tasks that have been taking up your time. If you get bogged down by tasks like managing your calendar or setting appointments but don't have time to hire an expert for those specific areas, a VA is the perfect solution!

Some examples of work a personal assistant could do for you include:

  • Scheduling and organizing appointments for an executive at a large company
  • Sending emails on behalf of an entrepreneur who runs his own business


Bookkeeping is the process of recording your financial transactions. Bookkeeping skills are specific and require a person to be trained in doing it properly. While there are many services that can do all of the bookkeeping for you, a VA can also take care of this job. The advantage of having a virtual assistant to do your bookkeeping is that they can handle any additional tasks you need as well, such as scheduling appointments or blog writing.

Data entry

Data entry is a great task to give to your virtual assistant, especially if they work remotely. If you're in the United States and the VA is based elsewhere, you can demonstrate the work that needs to be done and then send them a document or spreadsheet with all of the information at once, rather than having to dictate or manually input data one piece at a time. If you have a VA who works on site and can watch over their shoulder as they do data entry tasks, that's even better!


  • Transcription: Transcriptionists will transcribe interviews, lectures or speeches for a few cents per word. This can be a great tool to keep your mind fresh and clear. And if you are in an industry like law or medicine, transcriptionists are invaluable as they take the yoke of paperwork off your shoulders!
  • Blogging: The explosion of online content makes bloggers more valuable than ever before. If you’re short on time or need to publish daily content but don't have the bandwidth for it, the solution is easy — hire a blogger! Your virtual assistant will research topics, find keywords and write compelling articles that both entertain and inform readers.
  • Social media management: From Facebook to Twitter to Instagram to LinkedIn, social media has changed the way we do business forever. If you want to increase brand awareness and generate leads through social media, you must post regularly — but this requires time and dedication. A VA can help manage all your social media accounts, providing insightful comments on posts while interacting with customers and prospects.


You can also hire a VA for copywriting. Copywriting refers to the skill of writing text that sells products or services. It’s not just about “good writing”; it’s about creating great sales copy that focuses on having the best headline and explaining your benefits in a way that entices readers to take action.

There’s definitely some crossover between content writing and copywriting, but copywriting has more of an angle toward marketing. Copywriters are skilled at writing attention-grabbing headlines and succinctly describing the benefits of your product in a way that makes people want to buy it.

You can also hire VAs to edit written materials, such as books or websites. The difference between editing and proofreading is subtle but important: An editor gives suggestions on structure, flow, language use, etc.; a proofreader checks for typos and grammar mistakes.

Blogging and social media marketing

Blogging and social media marketing are excellent ways to build your brand and engage with your audience, but they can also be incredibly time-consuming. Fortunately, this work can easily be outsourced to a virtual assistant (VA) by having them do the following tasks:

  • Researching keywords related to your industry
  • Writing blog posts based on those keywords
  • Posting that content to social media

Website maintenance

Now that you know what a VA is and how to find one, it's time to discuss what you should give them to do. Virtual assistants can take on a variety of tasks, from administrative work like booking appointments to creative tasks like writing blog posts.

Since we're focused on the topic of website maintenance here at Treehouse, the kinds of tasks we'll cover will be related specifically to maintaining your website in tip-top shape—and that means making sure your site runs smoothly for visitors.

Here are some great ways you can use virtual assistants for general website maintenance:

  • Add new content to your site—like blog posts, services pages or product pages
  • Check for broken links and make sure they point where they're supposed to go
  • Check for security updates and apply them if needed (especially in regard to plugins used with popular platforms like WordPress)
  • Make sure there are no browser compatibility issues—that means checking on different browsers and devices (smartphones, tablets) and testing multiple versions of each browser too!
  • Make sure your content passes accessibility tests (for example, run your web pages through WAVE or AChecker)
  • Check if spelling and grammar are correct

Calendar and event management

A virtual assistant can help you manage your calendar and events.

Calendar management is a top task people outsource to virtual assistants. This task may include:

  • Scheduling meetings, appointments, calls, and other events that are sent to you via email or see in your inbox
  • Checking your calendar for conflicts
  • Rescheduling meetings when needed or conflict is found
  • Responding to meeting requests with a link to your online booking tool

A good VA will have multiple skills, but it's important to know what you need before you hire.

Now that you've decided to work with a VA, the next step is to determine what kinds of tasks you want them to help you with. You know it's best to delegate the work that doesn't make good use of your time, but how do your skills and needs translate into specific tasks for your virtual assistant?

The first thing to do is make a list of all the things you need. It might seem like your laundry list is overwhelming at first, but once it's on paper (or in an Excel spreadsheet) it becomes much easier to tackle. You can also estimate the time each task might take and figure out how much time you can devote toward delegation per week, or per month.

Next look at the skillsets that will help accomplish those needs and objectives. If there are certain areas where you're weak or not as experienced, it could be valuable to hire someone who has more expertise in those types of tasks than you do. In other words: if writing great blog posts isn't a strong suit—and if writing blog posts is really important for your business—then hiring someone who has that expertise can be extremely helpful!

This approach will allow you to build a team around where they excel while still keeping costs reasonable, which brings me seamlessly into my next section: How much should I pay when hiring virtual assistants

Posted on November 4th 2022

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