2020 - The year of virtual assistants and remote workers.
A Silver Lining throughout the chaos.
The trend of freelancing has been slowly rising for the last decade and according to Outsource Workers, the outsourcing industry grew to $105 Billion in 2020, compared to $45 billion just 20 years ago. This tells us that the demand for virtual assistants and remote workers is only increasing, and thanks to the technology of today, almost anything is possible. Web conferencing and remote project management tools make it even easier to run and maintain a team remotely.
Now, in these changing times, there has been a further increase in people working from home, many of those offering virtual assistance. Popular freelancing platforms have noted a huge increase in the number of VAs listed on their sites. Upwork and Peopleperhour both have over 5000 VA's listed with 26,000 on Freelancer and a staggering 74,000 on Guru.
Despite the Pandemic, companies are always on the lookout for ways to cut back on labour costs and by hiring virtual assistants and remote workers, they reduce costs while achieving the same, if not better results than full-time employees.
Sources at Inc.com note that throughout an eight-hour workday, the average worker is only productive for about two hours and 53 minutes, yet they will be paid for 8 hours! On the contrary, when hiring a virtual assistant, you only pay for the hours worked. Couple this with the reduction in insurance costs, holiday pay, and benefits, it's easy to see the enormous value of hiring remote workers!
40 percent of the U.S. workforce in 2020 was made up of virtual assistants, (as stated by Intuit) and with an average monthly salary of $4000 per month, for those in the 90th percentile, it is not something to be sniffed at!
The role of a virtual assistant is versatile and rewarding, and in a world where everyone is looking for more time freedom, a career as VA provides you with just that. According to Bestofbudgets, only 59% of VAs work full time, but while that may sound attractive, it is not to say that working from home is easy!
Remote working allows you to pick and choose the hours you work to suit your lifestyle but many people underestimate just what it takes to be a virtual assistant. VAs are skilled individuals and this role is not for everyone. You must be an excellent communicator, disciplined, and possess impeccable time management skills for a start!
Skilled VAs and remote workers are in high demand right now, with the percentage of digital assistants estimated to be around eight billion by 2023! (Statista)
And now, a year into the Pandemic, it appears that the limitations and the benefits of remote work are clear with many companies opting to maintain this new form of working. At the very least it is believed that the majority of employees could work from home at least 3 days a week. Statistics show that by removing commute time and un-necessarily long lunch hours, employees tend to be more productive during their working day.
The Pandemic may have caused disruption the world over, but what is evident, is that there has never been a better time to join the online world. The opportunities are endless for those with a laptop, reliable internet, a smartphone, and a DRIVE to succeed!