Finding an online job is not an easy feat.
Now that we’re still in the middle of the pandemic, more and more Filipinos are hopeful to work remotely without having to leave the safety of their house. Freelancing is the next new thing in the job market and regardless if you’re a 9 to 5 employee or a college student, there’s always something fit for you.
What’s appealing about freelancing is that you can choose to have complete control over your schedule. It’s perfect for those students who want to find a job but at the same time, still keep premium importance to their academics. For most people, there’s always the idea of just having to pick one —to continue investing in their formal education or go straight ahead in making money.
But what if we can tell you that you can achieve both?
Meet Anjelo Maquinay. A 21-year old college scholar at a university studying Industrial Engineering. At the same time, Anjelo is also an Amazon virtual assistant under an Amazon advertising agency.
Like every college student, Anjelo spent most of his time studying. As a scholar, he had to meet the competitive expectations of his program and maintain high grades. But when the pandemic came to the Philippines, Anjelo found himself in a situation where he needed to do something.
“Sunod-sunod ang mga nangyayari sa family namin. Financial problems, ganoon. Sunod-sunod din kaming nagkasakit. Naging PUI (Patient Under Investigation) pa nga ako. Iyong mother ko nagkasakit, then ako naman. Tinakbo namin sa hospital iyong mother ko and then nagkaroon siya ng surgery. Wala kaming pambayad sa hospital bills.”
Anjelo’s family relied from the help of their relatives and borrowed loans just to settle the cost of their hospital bill. Still a student, and the youngest among his other two siblings, Anjelo’s relatives asked him to help provide for his family especially now during the pandemic.
“Pinayuhan ako ng auntie ko: ‘You’re mature enough so step up for your family. Hangga’t maaga, ikaw na iyong tumayo bilang breadwinner’.”
He then started looking for online jobs. Whenever he’s not having any online classes in his university, he patiently browsed job postings online in hope of landing a freelance gig to be able to help provide for the family’s expenses.
“Nagsimula ako sa Jobstreet kasi iyon lang ang alam ko. Wala kasi talaga akong kaalam-alam sa online job. Hanggang sa napunta ako sa mga vlog sa YouTube. Nakakita ako ng online jobs na typing at data entry. Sabi ko, parang pwede ito sa akin so try ko nga.”
It wasn’t easy for him at first. He had no prior work experience, online or not. From Jobstreet, he went to Onlinejobs.ph hoping for his timely break. After 10 submissions, Anjelo didn’t receive any reply and he was convinced that this gig is really not for him.
He finally had his first stint at a job as a copywriter, thanks to a connection from his highschool classmate.
“Nag-message iyong kaklase ko noong high school. Sabi niya, baka interested ako sa raket kasi may kilala siya na HR ng isang outsourcing company sa UK. Sabi ko, sige. Try natin ito. Nagpasa ako agad ng resume and other requirements. Pinaglaanan ko talaga ng oras iyon. After three days, may nag-message sa akin at ininvite ako ng interview.”
Anjelo was immediately put on a trial test after his interview. He had a background in journalism from several competitions that he joined back in high school so he was comfortable in article writing. However, he didn’t manage to land a regular position at the company after his trial period.
“After ng interview and trial, wala na. Parang na-ghost na ako. So sabi ko, parang hindi ata para sa akin iyong ganitong trabaho.”
Wanting to value his time more especially when he had his academics to worry about, Anjelo didn’t want to go back to data entry and transcription. For him, the time it takes to finish a task is way too long that the pay is no longer rewarding.
He continued to look for future prospects. He first came across Shopify VA and while watching tutorials on YouTube, he came across Amazon VA through the ASVA channel.
“Napadpad ako dito sa channel about Amazon VA. Noong una ayaw ko pang panoorin. Then tinignan ko muna iyong video ng tips kung paano makakapag-land ng client sa job interview kasi feeling ko doon ako nag-struggle.”
After watching several more videos on the channel, Anjelo came across the success story of Faye, another student of Amazon Masterclass.
“Noong nalaman ko na ganoong kalaki iyong kinikita nila, sabi ko ‘my god, paano kaya nila kinikita iyong ganoong pera?’ Tapos hanggang sa mayroon nang pinag-uusapan na Advance or Elite. Doon ako nagtaka hanggang sa napunta ako sa ASVA. Pinanood ko rin iyong story ni Ghelsy. Doon talaga ako na-inspire nang marami kasi college student siya. So kung kaya ni Ghelsy, kaya ko rin.”
Extremely motivated by the success stories, Anjelo went ahead and looked around the website of ASVA. He found the Amazon Seller Virtual Assistant Mastercourse and decided to take a huge risk.
“Noong time na binabasa ko iyong website ng ASVA, ang ganda ng benefits. Pero saan naman ako kukuha ng pera? So sabi ko sa friend ko, baka naman matulungan mo ako. Wag ka mag-alala kasi inaassure ko sa iyo na makukuha ko itong job na ito at mababayaran kita.”
Anjelo had to borrow money just to enroll in the ASVA course. Failure wasn’t an option for him because he invested all that he had to improve on his skills and knowledge to become an Amazon Seller virtual assistant.
“Diretso nag-enroll na talaga ako noong nakuha ko iyong money. Hindi na ako nagsayang ng oras kasi baka break ko na ito.”
Unlike other people, Anjelo didn’t leave space for doubts. It was a complete leap of faith for him despite the high risks. His goal of landing a big break for a job and getting himself a client was bigger than any what-ifs.
When asked if Anjelo had to struggle with self-doubt, he reminded everyone to keep their eyes on the prize.
“Hindi ko talaga naisip iyon. Ang mindset ko talaga ay makatulong sa family ko. Iyon ang number one factor kung bakit ko gustong makakuha ng client as an Amazon VA.”
But despite being motivated and confident that he’s able to achieve what he wants, Anjelo still faced several struggles. After all, he wasn’t handed a get-rich-quick ticket to success. He recognized that if he wants to hone his skills to land a client, he needed to work for it.
“May mga times na medyo nade-depress ako kasi hindi ko matapos iyong modules at nagsasama-sama na iyong bayarin namin. Pero inisip ko na lang na baka test lang ito sa akin. Kasi wala namang daan na madali.”
Throughout taking the Masterclass, Anjelo was thankful for the support and guidance that the community gave him. The modules included in the ASVA Masterclass gave him the knowledge and confidence needed for him to land a client.
“Lagi akong nagtatanong sa official page ng ASVA. May admin doon at lagi akong nagtatanong na paano po ito at paano iyong ganyan. Tapos siya na iyong nag-accommodate sa akin. Along the module, parang nagkaroon ako ng confidence na makakakuha ako ng client kasi tinuruan kami doon kung paano gumawa ng resume, portfolio, at cover letter.”
He dedicated one week to finish the modules of ASVA Mastercourse. Then, Anjelo managed to land his very first client within one month earning around PhP 23,000 to 24,000 monthly with only five to six hours of daily work.
Anjelo worked incredibly hard to reach this level of success. He was consistent in applying despite not hearing from some of his prospects.
“Noong una, bale mga one to three weeks ako na nag-apply. Puro interview tapos sasabihin niya, ‘we’ll email you’ na lang. Nasa isip ko, hindi naman ito magpaparamdam. May mga times pa ng ana hindi sila sumisipot sa interview.”
Before working as an Amazon PPC, Anjelo tried to apply for Amazon product research. However, the intense competition within that certain field made him recalculate his own plans.
“Amazon research product kasi iyong inapplyan ko kasi sakto na may marketing class ako sa school. Doon ako nagkaroon ng interest sa marketing. Tapons inisip ko, bakit hindi kaya ako mag-Amazon PPC kasi kaunti pa lang iyong mga may mastering sa specialization na iyon.”
Anjelo then went ahead and applied as an Amazon PPC. He decided that this was his last chance of applying. If he can’t land a client, then he might have to postpone his job-hunting until after his school year ends.
“Sabi ko, last shot ko na siguro ito. Sa bakasyon ko na lang aayusin iyong applications ko.”
It was at that right moment that a prospective client messaged him and asked for an interview. Anjelo immediately agreed but his hopes for that job are not that high.
“Noong una, akala ko na hindi na niya ako re-replyan. Medyo naii-stress na ako kasi wala pa talaga akong client. Kasi iyong sa batch ko, sunod-sunod na iyong success stories nila. Napag-iiwanan na ako.”
However, Anjelo found his big break. Despite not having any experience with any online jobs, his client eagerly considered him as a candidate.
“Ang sabi ng client ko, ang pagiging kawalan ng experience mo ay hindi ibig sabihin na disqualified ka na sa position mo. Tinanong ako kung may alam ako sa Excel, meron naman. Nagkaroon kami ng interview at sobrang smooth lang. Kinwento na niya sa akin kung ano iyong ginagawa nila. Tapos kinabukasan, nagsimula na ako.”
Finally landing a client, Anjelo works at a flexible time of five to six hours per day with a rate of $5 per hour. Thanks to the flexibility of the job, he’s still able to earn money while focusing on his academics.
If you’re a college student like Anjelo and is still on the fence about investing in your own skills to become an Amazon Seller VA, then his advice is something to take into consideration:
“Always go back to your objective. Nakalagay iyon sa ASVA Masterclass. Kung sukong-suko ka na kasi hindi mo makuha iyong goal mo, balikan mo lang ang objective mo. Try and try until you succeed. The moment you’ve succeeded, you have to try again for your next goal.”
Now that Anjelo reached his goal of landing a client and helping with the finances of his family, Anjelo wanted to take things further.
“Ang plan ngayon ay pagsasabayin ko pa rin ang academics and work. Iyong mga natutunan ko kasi na soft and technical skills sa school ay nagagamit ko rin as an Amazon VA. Three to six months from now, magsa-save ako ng money. Ipagpapatuloy ko ang pagiging Amazon VA at I’m planning to have more clients. Then iyong money ko ay balak ko talagang mag-online business. Sisimulan ko sa local market.”
If you’re wondering how you can gain the skills to become a sought-after Amazon Virtual Assistant like Anjelo, then visit this link to know more, https://amazonationph.com/amzonvaeml/