The idea of a “temporary” worker is actually an old-fashioned one: the idea that someone with a specific skill can come into an established business and, without independent thought, simply do what anyone else can do, in exactly the way the boss desires, and there will be no noticeable difference in the work.
A Virtual Assistant is, by her own definition, not a temporary. She is a business professional and a business owner.
To her work, a Virtual Assistant brings her professionalism, her expertise, her opinions, her strengths and skills, her vision and her professional viewpoint to your project, business or task.
The Virtual Assistant knows that she has business savvy that goes from the ground, up, and she offers that savvy to you as her client, and not as her boss.
Where you see the need for a database to be set up, she sees the need for you to know which aspects are critical to consider before setting it up. She wants to save you  trouble not just now, but down the road, which also saves you money.
Where you see the need for social media help, she is able to tell you how that actually works, what kinds of ongoing communications are necessary to form ongoing business relationships.
Virtual Assistants come in all sizes and shapes, women and men, I.T. and Social Media Professionals, Document Specialists and Copywriters, Accounts Payable Professionals and Website Designers.
The important thing to understand when hiring a Virtual Assistant is who you are hiring: a professional whose expertise you welcome, or a cog in a wheel. When you know which you need, you can choose appropriately, and wisely.