Working as a virtual assistant requires you to handle various tasks. To make your life easier, there are several virtual assistant skills and tools that you can invest in. You may encounter situations where you are assigned tasks that you probably have no idea how to handle but with the right virtual assistant tools at your disposal, you can still deliver quality work to your clients.
There are both free and paid virtual assistant tools available in the market. While some of the tools may be beyond your budget, knowing how they work is crucial. If you can’t pay the monthly fee you can always recommend them to your client.
In this article, we are going to look at different tools used by virtual assistant. We’ll cover tools and software for virtual assistants, some of them are free to use while others require you to pay an extra fee to access certain features.
Time Tracking Tools
Most clients prefer to pay their virtual assistants per hour. To be able to achieve this, your client will need to know how much time you billed and what you were working on. Time tracking tools come in handy for this.
1. Time Doctor
Time Doctor tracks your time as you work making you more accountable and productive. It integrates with other tools that you may be using such as Trello, Asana, Todoist. If you are shopping for a time tracking tool that easily integrates with payroll this may be a good choice.
Accurate time tracking that integrates with payroll making it easier for a virtual assistant to receive payment for the exact amount of time worked.
There is no free version.
Pricing: Starts at $7 per month.
Hubstaff is another great time tracking tool for virtual assistants. Like Time Doctor, it also integrates with payroll and checks on your productivity. It can also be used as a project management tool.
- Integrates with international payment options like PayPal and Transferwise.
- If your internet drops, Hubstaff will still track your time.
- Free option available though with limited features.
Pricing: $0 – $20.00 per user depending on the features you are interest in.
As a virtual assistant communication is critical. And having the right tools to communicate with your clients makes the work flow effortless.
While email is a good option, some of your emails may get lost in the mix up. As a virtual assistant, you want to stay productive, and having to constantly check your email and refresh it for updates may prove counterproductive.
And sometimes, all you need is a quick response to your message to get clarity on a task.
Here are some programs that can help you with that.
This is a tool geared towards teams.
As a VA, you may be working for a number of clients. You can create different workspaces for different clients.
Slack also has some amazing apps that can help you in your day-to-day activities such as setting reminders, to-do’s and even adding a few notes to yourself.
It also integrates with other apps such as Google Drive and Office 365.
- Downloadable on different devices.
- Voice and video calls directly from slack.
Pricing: Starts from $0.00 to $12.50 per month. Also has an option for enterprise clients.
If you are looking for an alternative to Slack, you may want to check out what Flock offers.
Flock is a messaging and collaboration platform for teams.
You can leave voice notes.
Pricing: Free, Pro and Enterprise options available.
Chanty is a communication and collaboration tool that you can use as a virtual assistant. Some of the features that stands out include; the ability to turn messages into tasks. Prioritize different tasks and set due dates for your tasks and subtasks. Share voice messages.
No audio and video calls on the free plan.
Pricing: Free and business option which starts at $3 per month.
Video Conferencing Tools
As a virtual assistant, there is a high possibility you are working miles away from your client. Chances of ever meeting face to face might be limited. However, this doesn’t mean you cant put a face to a name.
While messages and emails offer a good option to communicate, once in a while your client may require you to be available for video calls.
There are lots of video conferencing tools available at the moment. While the features may be similar, as a virtual assistant, it’s always good to familiarize with a variety of them.
Remember different clients, have different needs and varied preferences.
Zoom is a video conferencing software that is available worldwide. It allows you to hold meeting and virtual events. Even though it’s a video tool, you can always switch to the audio version and makes calls.
- Support recording, screen sharing.
- Advanced privacy and security features.
- Host up to 100 participants.
Free version only allows up to 40 minutes for group meeting.
Pro: $149.90 per year per license
Business: $199.90 per year per license
Zoom united business: $350 per year per license
7. Google Meet
Google Meet is Google’s video conferencing tool that replaced Google Hangouts.
Like other video conferencing tools, you can schedule your calls. It also allows you to record, share files, share your screen while connected.
- Real time captioning that makes it easier for users with disabilities such as hard of hearing.
- Screen reader magnifiers for low vision users.
- Keyboard shortcuts to control the camera and microphone.
Google Meet: Free
Google Workspace Essentials: $8 per active user per month
Google Workspace Enterprise: You can get a quote when you contact their sales reps.
Virtual Assistant Financial Tools
As a freelance virtual assistant, you are responsible for your finances. While you may not be an accountant by profession, that doesn’t exempt you from keeping everything in check and filing your taxes.
Learning how financial tools work, will not only make your work easier, but also if you get good at it, you can offer bookkeeping and invoicing as a service to your clients.
Freshbooks is an invoicing and accounting software that is designed for freelancers and small businesses. A great resource for recurring invoices and automated payment reminders.
- Integrated time tracking feature.
- Available on iOS and Android.
Starts at $15 per month.
Freshbooks is currently running an offer of 60% off for 6 months with an additional 10% off for the yearly plan.
Lite: $4.50 per month
Plus: $7.50 per month
Premium: $15.00 per month
Wave brands itself as an award-winning financial software for entrepreneurs.
It offers payroll, invoicing and payments
Free invoicing, receipt scanning and accounting.
Charges to use the payroll option.
Xero is a cloud-based accounting software tool that is designed for accountant, bookkeepers and small businesses. It allows you to connect to your bank, pay bills and claim expenses.
Available on iOS and Android.
You have to pay to use.
Starter: $20 per month
Standard: $30 per month
Premium: $40 per month.
As a virtual assistant, you need a scheduling tool. Scheduling tools for virtual assistant helps you to not only manage your time but also comes in handy especially if you are managing your client’s calendar.
Need to set up an appointment with your client but not sure what time they are available for a meeting? Calendly helps you to give your client options on different times that you are available for a meeting. You create different slots and the client gets to choose which one works for them.
You can sync with your google calendar and receive reminders before your appointment.
The free version is a bit limited.
Premium: $8.00 per user per month
Pro: $12.00 per user per month.
12. Google Calendar
Google calendar allows you to create multiple calendars. You can choose a different color for each client you are working with.
Allows you to share a calendar with only the concerned parties. It also gives you the ability to hide any calendars you don’t need at the moment from view.
You have to be connected to the internet to view your calendars.
Free with your Gmail account.
SimplyBook.me is an online booking system for service based industries.
This scheduling tool allows you to accept bookings either on your website or theirs. Connecting on your own website helps to protect your professionalism and branding, however, if you don’t have a website the easiest option is to do it through their website.
- Email and SMS push notifications
- Accept payments via PayPal or Stripe.
- Free option has limited features
You get to save 17% with the yearly plan.
Basic: $9.99 per month
Standard: $29.90 per month
Premium: $59.90 per month
What makes Setmore a great scheduling app for virtual assistant is the option of having the app on your phone. The tool is available on both iOS and Android and this allows you to manage your meeting on the go.
- Email and SMS reminders.
- Ability to accept payments with Square and Stripe
- Integrates with Zoom and Teleport.
- Allows you to personalize your booking with your branding.
- Free option has limited features.
Basic: $9 per user per month
Pro: $5 per user per month
Social Media Tools
As a virtual assistant, there is a high possibility of being asked to manage your client’s social media accounts. Some of the tasks may include:
- Scheduling social media posts.
- Engaging with followers.
- Analyzing performance of social media campaigns.
To get good results out of social media, you need to post content at the right time, having the right tools can make a huge difference. These social media tools can come in handy.
Hootsuite allows you to cross post content on different social media platforms. It allows you to engage with users and track your results effortlessly.
Monitor different social media accounts in one place.
Grow your skills in Hootsuite academy.
No free option
Professional: $19 per month
Business: $99 per month
Team: $599 per month
If you are looking for a tool that will help you schedule social media posts only without the other functions, Buffer is a good option.
Sends you a notification if your scheduled posts fail.
Limited social channels and scheduled posts for the free and pro plans
Pro: $15 per month
Premium: $65 per month
Business: $99 per month
Just as the name suggests, Tweetdeck is a social media dashboard app for managing Twitter accounts. The tool allows you to manage different lists for all your accounts.
18. Sprout Social
Sprout Social is a social media management platform that allows you to manage all your social media profiles from a single platform.
Analytics to help you understand how your brand is performing.
No free option only a 30-day trial and the standard plan which is the cheapest only allows 5 social profiles.
Standard: $99 per user per month
Professional: $149 per user per month
Advanced: $249 per user per month.
Later markets itself as the world’s favorite Instagram marketing platform.
If you are working as a Pinterest virtual assistant or you manage your client’s Instagram account, Later has you covered. This tool is built for sharing videos, photos and stories.
Scheduling posts is as easy as drag and drop. And if you don’t have time to create content, it helps you find the appropriate content, add your personal touch and share!
Free for life for individuals
Starter: $12.50 per month
Growth: $20.83 per month
Advanced: $33.33 per month
File Sharing Tools
Sending emails back and forth can be inconveniencing. File sharing tools make more sense when collaborating with clients. There are unlimited options when it comes to free virtual assistant software for file sharing. Here are the options that I believe offer the best service.
Dropbox is a file hosting service that allows you to save your files online and access them on different devices. The basic plan includes 2 GB of storage space.
Content and accident protection.
Basic plan is a bit limited.
Personal: Plus for individuals – $9.99 per month. For families – $16.99 per month
Professional: For individuals – $16.58 per month
Business standard; For smaller teams – $12.50 per user per month
Advanced for larger teams: $20 per user per month
21. Google Drive
If you sign up for an individual Google account, you receive 15 GB of storage. If you need additional space, you can opt for G Suite which comes with a business email and additional apps. The free account enables to share documents and collaborate in real time without having to worry about the version.
Share files with anyone with a google account.
Files cannot be accessed while offline.
If you are looking for a file sharing tool that offers robust security features, you need to check out Box. It allows you to securely share files and control access on an individual level. The individual free plan includes up to 10GB of storage and 250MB file upload limit.
Secure file sharing and higher file upload limit.
You need to upgrade to get better features.
They offer both individual and business plans.
Personal pro: $11.50 per month.
Graphic Design Tools
As a virtual assistant, your clients may request for simple designs such as social media posts. Having design knowledge is a plus and can help you land more jobs. The best and easiest way to get started is to lean how to use design tools.
Canva is a favorite among virtual assistants who are interested in learning graphic design. It allows you to design flyers, create social media posts, simple logos, presentations and so much more.
The free version allows you access to 250,000 plus templates and thousands of free photos and graphics.
Some of the graphics have the Canva watermark and you need to upgrade to a paid plan to remove it.
Pro: $9.99 per month
Enterprise: $30.00 per month per person
Visme is a great alternative to Canva. This graphic design tool is packed with features and allows you to create professional graphics.
Collaboration features for teams.
Free plan has limited features.
Standard: $15.00 per month
Business: $29.00 per month
Looking for a graphic design tool that lets you design like a pro even when you are an amateur? Check out Easil. This drag and drop design tool empowers you to do so much more with 2,500 templates with their free basic plan.
Free stock images.
You can’t download transparent PNG files with the free plan.
Plus: $7.50 per member per month
Edge: $59 per member per month.
To come up with great designs, you’ll need some great photos. As a virtual assistant, you may not have the luxury to afford a paid photographer to provide you with quality images to use. Pixabay comes in handy with the free to use photos. The site offers you millions of options, from photos to graphics that are royalty free for personal and commercial use.
Document Signing Tools
A gentleman’s agreement may sound like an ideal option but its not the way to do business. As a virtual assistant you need to sign a contract before starting on any new project. You may also be required to sign other documents such as non-disclosure agreements.
Trusted by over 200 million users, DocuSign offers a way to sign documents electronically on different devices with an esignature.
DocuSign allows you to drag and drop different fields depending on what you need filled, be it a signature, date or initial.
All you have to do is draft your document, drag and drop the DocuSign fields and send it to your client.
Though done electronically this is legally binding and acceptable in 180 countries. Once everything is signed, your documents will be stored safely in the cloud and you can access them anytime you need.
Personal: $15 per month
Standard: $40 per user per month
Business pro: $60 per user per month.
Password Management Tools
As a virtual assistant, you’ll need to access different accounts and each account requires a password. No matter how smart you are, being able to remember passwords can prove difficult and you may end up locked out of some accounts.
Password managers come in handy. They allow you to securely store your numerous passwords in one place. And all you need to remember is your password manager password. If you are shopping around for a good password tool, here are some of our recommendations:
If you are accessing your accounts across different devices, LastPass saves all your passwords across the devices.
To make it easier, you can install the LastPass browser extension and it will automatically fill in your username and password when you visit a website you frequently use.
Using a new device? Just log in to LastPass with your master password and retrieve your login details to enter manually.
Premium: $3 per month
Families: $4 per month
Like LastPass, Dashlane syncs to all your devices allowing you to securely access your accounts easily.
Free: $0 per month
Essentials: $2.49 per month
Premium: $3.99 per month
Family: $5.99 per month
Knowing which virtual assistant tool to use when will help you stand out from other candidates when you are interviewing for a virtual assistant position.
Learning how different virtual assistant software works also gives you an edge and allows you to charge a premium fee and grow your virtual assistant career in the long run.
What’s your favorite tool on the list?
Did we miss out on anything? Share with us!