February 22, 2021
Virtual Gurus, a Calgary-based talent service company, has launched a virtual assistant app to be used in Slack workplaces. The app, askBetty, connects users with live personal assistants who handle on-demand administrative tasks.
Clients may hire askBetty assistants to complete tasks such as audio transcription, proofreading, making reservations, coordinating travel arrangements, and sourcing contractors. The on-demand service provides flexibility for both clients and the assistants themselves, who can log on and off as they please and choose tasks that interest them.
Virtual Gurus’ customer base expanded significantly during COVID-19. askBetty was introduced to meet rising demand in services and in response to the shift to remote work. Virtual Gurus provides longer-term, skilled administrative services, but the company recognizes that not everyone needs a full-time virtual assistant, which is where askBetty comes in.
Bobby Racette, the company’s founder and CEO, is a Cree-Métis woman who launched Virtual Gurus in 2016 after being laid off from her job in Calgary’s energy sector. Her goal in founding the business was to create jobs for marginalized individuals who struggled to access nine-to-five work. She bootstrapped the company until February 2020, when Virtual Gurus raised $1.2 million CAD in its first round of venture financing.
Author: Brennan Caldwell