Virtual offices are the wave of the future – with administrative staff, on-demand centers, conference rooms, and additional services to increase your productivity, these alternatives to your traditional workplace can improve your work rate and boost your daily output.
If you have decided to bite the bullet and make a move to a virtual office for your next business endeavor, you may be wondering what characteristics to look for in a workplace.
After all, you need to choose one with the right features for your unique business to increase productivity, reduce workload, and improve efficiency. The good thing is you can learn more here.
5 steps to setting up a virtual office
1. Generate an idea and business strategy
Just because you are working remotely and separate from your other colleagues, this does not mean that you should ignore some of the most important aspects of running nor starting a business – generating a unique business idea and sticking to your plan.
Your plan should have the same core ideas that you conceptualized in your brainstorming phase of the creation process. If you are not sure where to start with your plan, consider looking at other small businesses in similar niche areas.
2. Use your business address
Before you list your home address as your business address, choose your workplace address to prevent any opened mail, lost packages, and confusion when partners are sending documents through the mail. See if any regulations apply to your business, such as needing a registered agent for LLCs and corporations.
3. Identify your workspace needs
Since every business is unique, so are the needs for your workspace when compared to other companies. Whether you have thousands of employees or you are a one-man or one-woman show, you need to determine what your business requires to run smoothly on a daily basis.
4. Tools to manage your virtual office
Since you will be working remotely at an office, you will need to have certain tools available to you and your team to make sure that every one of your employees maximizes their productivity for the benefit of your company. Some crucial tools to success enhance collaboration, team connection, project management, and sharing.
5. Hire a virtual assistant
Virtual assistants are important cogs in the strategy, offering benefits like delegating tasks, helping with administrative office needs, dealing with customer service, editing content, and running social media accounts.
Seven Things Every Virtual Office Needs
1. Phone number with voicemail
If potential clients can’t reach you, your business will surely suffer. Your place needs to have a phone line so you can be reached at all hours of the day, even when your cellphone has died, and your email is lagging.
2. Business mailing address
Even though it is called a ‘virtual’ office, this is still a physical space. By setting up a private mailbox, you can receive documents and correspondence from partners and potential clients at your ‘work’ address.
Bringing your own device is almost a prerequisite to working nowadays. Gone are the times of desktop computers, where all of your daily work is saved in one physical space.
Nowadays, people work remotely more than ever, bringing their laptops to coffee shops, friends’ houses, and home to continue plugging away at their job. Make sure you can bring your laptop to your new workplace to remain organized.
4. Office spaces
One of the main prerequisites of a virtual office is actual office space, meaning workspaces, lounges, and meeting rooms available to every user. Sometimes changing scenery during the day is the much-needed solution you need to kickstart your brain into overdrive when stuck on a problem.
5. Fast Internet
There is almost no point working at an office if the internet is slow and the WiFi is spotty. After all, you came here to be more productive, not watch your cursor rotate in a circle for 30 minutes. Check the internet connection before signing up for your new office for a long commitment.
6. Office machines
Although everything is done electronically, this kind of workplace should still have copiers, scanners, printers, and high-quality office machines to deal with everyday office tasks. You never know when a partner could show up to your virtual office and collect important notes from your latest meeting.
7. Phone support
Virtual offices should feature a live receptionist who can help improve your brand reputation, manage call volume, transfer callers, take messages, schedule appointments, and collect caller information to help relieve some of the work burdens from your shoulders.
8. Is a virtual company the best choice for you?
A virtual company usually has no physical space and contains minimal physical assets. Most of the activities are one remotely and online in your space that offers a greater sense of flexibility.
There are many reasons why a virtual business model would work well for your company, such as:
- Creative agencies
- E-commerce services
- Information-sharing business
- Outsourced services
- Authors and speakers
- Mobile workers who need to travel to conduct business across the nation
Why set up a virtual company?
There are numerous benefits to creating a virtual company and using a virtual office space. Some of the main reasons are:
- Inexpensive setup due to a lack of long-term agreements and leases
- Easy to set up since many services are now available online
- Less startup risk due to less upfront investment
- More freedom with increased flexibility
- Easier to scale, grow, and evolve your business by avoiding high monthly costs or long-term commitments
- Market acceptance since there is less emphasis on physical presence or the prerequisite to deal with large companies to establish your business
Choosing the right virtual office for your business is a key step in building your brand, establishing your company’s reputation, and increasing your productivity. Make sure your new office has certain features to keep your business trending upward, helping release some pressure from your everyday life.