A virtual office can consist of a rented business address, a rented phone number answered by a virtual receptionist, hourly rented meeting/work space, and pay-per-use business amenities. This option can work very well for the mobile, independent, or home-based business/individual that needs to project a professional presence and/or to use a temporary office space periodically. Virtual office services are turnkey so they typically are very quick, easy, and cost-effective to set up. Some virtual office providers, such as Intelligent Office, offer à la carte services that are customized to the user. The costs usually scale with usage levels, which can be suitable for businesses that are growing, in transitional phases, or experience volatility or seasonality.
The virtual office user, however, should pay attention to details such as hidden charges (if any), variable costs, contract terms (especially renewal and cancellation policies), quality and capabilities of the virtual receptionists, and availability and ease of reserving meeting rooms or work space. Without a permanent physical location, it is important for the virtual office user to be organized and plan ahead.
Check out our previous introduction and home office blogs, and stay tuned for future blogs on coworking space, executive office suites, subleasing, traditional office, costs of the various office options.