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What is Virtual Office Space?

By Townes Haas   |    March 17, 2014   |    3:17 PM

Entrepreneurs, freelancers and small business owners often don’t have the working capital to afford a dedicated office. In fact, many businesses may only need an actual office space for occasional meetings or presentations. Still to maintain a professional appearance, many of these same businesses still rent office space, despite the costs of the lease and staff overhead.

An alternative to the traditional office space that is rapidly gaining popularity is a virtual office. A relatively new concept, the virtual office space has all the amenities of a regular office – WiFi, landlines, conference rooms and even staff. The difference, however, is that you are renting the whole kit and caboodle for a set price from a virtual office space provider. For a low cost, you can use the space for an hour or two, or on daily or weekly basis.

Rise of the Virtual Office
The changing face of how businesses are run means remote working solutions are becoming increasingly more viable. Employees no longer only work within the office doors. Telecommuting has become less the exception to the rule and more the rule itself. Whole businesses are allowing employees to work remotely, meaning that there are fewer people within traditional offices.

That doesn’t mean that the traditional office is completely going away. You certainly can’t do everything in a coffeehouse. Many small businesses, however, don’t have the necessary funds to maintain a full-time office space. Since humans are social animals, face-to-face meetings and interactions are still a requirement for business. A virtual office allows small or startup businesses all the amenities required to have these necessary interactions.

Benefits of a Virtual Office

A virtual office offers businesses many benefits, including:

  • Major Cost Savings: With a virtual office space, the virtual office provider is responsible for all overhead costs, including the cost of equipment, rent and utilities. You pay a single rental fee that includes both the space and the equipment.

  • More Productive Workforce: A recent study by Inc. Magazine shows that employees who work from home are nearly twice as likely to work over 40 hours a week. Telecommuters can save between $2,000 and $7,000 a year on expenses like clothing and transportation. According to Kate Lister, President of Global Workplace Analytics, “The people who are allowed to telecommute now tend to be the oldest, highest paid, and most trusted employees. I call it the 5 percent privilege. Businesses need to get past that.”

  • Best Foot Forward: Your business lives or dies by its reputation. A virtual office allows you to keep a professional image with real conference rooms, a receptionist to greet guests, an actual office address and amenities. Your guests will never know that they’re in a shared space.

  • Everything You Need to Be Successful: Your virtual office space includes the entire infrastructure that you need to run your business: voicemail, high-speed Internet, office equipment and phones. And all of this is included in the contract price – meaning you only pay for what and for how long you need it.

Virtual office space provides you with everything that you need from a traditional office - at a fraction of the cost.