Virtual Office Services
is a concept that is not based in one physical location but consists of employees working remotely by using information and communications technologies.
a virtual office is characterized by the use of teleworkers, telecenters, mobile workers, hot-desking, and hoteling, and promotes the use of virtual teams.
Virtual Office Services can increase an organization’s flexibility, cost effectiveness, and efficiency.
Typical Virtual Office Services
The term “virtual office” implies space utilization, but a full application includes professional live communications.
1. Virtual Receptionist A team of workers in our office environment working remotely, using high-tech Computer Telephone Integration software, to replace a traditional receptionist.
2. Virtual Assistant Our virtual assistant is a highly trained professional working from one of our remote locations. Rates run $15 an hour and up.
3. Answering services operate from our centralized location for the purpose of receiving and transmitting a large volume of requests by telephone. All answering services are professionally trained and bilingual.
4. Voice mail is a low-cost technology that stores voice messages electronically. Forwarding to email is seamlessly integrated.
5. Auto Attendant for after business hours or announcements, lets you establish departments, keeps the caller on the line and delegates the calls to the correct recipient.
1. Professional Address – A prestigious building to be used as the business address. A professional address alleviates the privacy and personal security concerns of running a home-based business. A user can expand into new markets by utilizing Officentos – Virtual Office Centers with multiple locations to establish a professional presence in the desired growth markets.
2. Mailing address – The professional address can be used for accepting, sending & forwarding mail without the connotations of a PO Box. Under US law, a PO Box is to be clearly indicated and so not adequate for most corporate entities in this regard.
3. Reception Courtesies – Receptionists at the business address can receive and sign for incoming overnights, deliveries, packages and provide document drop-off/pick-up services. On-site witnesses and notaries may are available in most locations.
4. Business Meeting Space – The on-demand use (hourly, daily or weekly) of conference rooms and offices for meetings.
5. Casual Workspace – As an alternative to the distractions of co-working or the interruptions of a home office, office space is available on an occasional or “drop-in” basis, either hourly, daily or monthly.
6. Executive Suite – A small percentage of VO users lease space full-time time.
7. On-Site Amenities – Officento’s full virtual office services provide broadband internet, fax-copier-printer, advanced phone features, conference calling, video conferencing, kitchenette and a business-worthy lobby/waiting area. (in most locations)
Virtual offices are experiencing growth even in a recessionary economy, and not just in the United States. As businesses look to trim expenses, virtual office services help reduce overhead while keeping professionalism high.
For example, by paying for space and communication infrastructure on an as-needed basis, businesses can keep office expenses to a minimum.
The portability of today’s technology also allows for a more flexible work environment. As businesses trend to a more “online” workplace, the notion of paying for space full-time becomes anachronistic.
Traditional receptionists making $12-14/hour can be replaced with remote receptionist services at a fraction of the traditional cost.
Future of Virtual Office Services
At an increasing pace, the VO concept is replacing the traditional office. Surveys reveal that a greater percentage of the workforce desires a more “mobile” definition of an office.
The new generation of entrepreneurs is embracing virtual office services instead of the traditional office space on a global scale. Many companies are incorporating the flexibility of a virtual office into their culture. Corporations like Accenture, IBM and Crayon are at the forefront of publicly-traded companies actively utilizing the virtual office concept.
Even the world of academia has discovered the advantages of a virtual office. The virtual office industry has spawned a sub-industry; companies are now developing products & services specifically for virtual office applications.
Companies have barely scratched the surface of the concept of virtual offices. Working virtually is the future for all businesses that seek to (points 1-8):
1. Make the world an extremely connected place, reaching smaller towns and cities across the globe.
2. Set up branches in important cities or abroad, regardless of current size.
3. Reduce carbon footprints by lowering consumption of fuel and electricity by eliminating distance variables and expanding boundaries for working creatively.
4. Cash in on the interaction technology wave and ensure that anything other than talent, skills, intelligence and aptitude are irrelevant (like a worker’s previously limiting physical location).
5. Expand hiring choices and provide a more comfortable working environment, less stress and a more balanced lifestyle while increasing personal productivity with time & money saved from zero commuting.
6. Cut commercial real estate costs with a viable alternative rents or leases and reduce large set-ups, hierarchies and innumerable administrative functions.
7. Encourage entrepreneurs who want to test a business location and expand their presence by removing the start-up company obstacles of infrastructure and fixed staff.
8. Have staff flexibilities instead of hiring secretaries
Typical Virtual Office Services Users
A virtual office blends home and work to gain efficiencies in both. Office expenses are low, while the user’s professionalism retains the image of a traditional, high-cost office.
Virtual office services users can reduce their environmental impact, as well as the personal negatives of a daily commute. Virtual office clientele have the flexibility to match expenses with revenue fluctuations immediately, as the costs are usually variable.
A virtual office can allow for low-cost expansion with no long-term commitments. Users taking advantage of virtual office receptionists eliminate the traditional burden of health care, records, payroll, insurance & rent. Also, traditional time-off (sick days, vacations, personal leaves, etc…) does not apply to a virtual staff.
Common Virtual Office Users:
1. Home-based entrepreneurs
4. Law Firms
5. Mobile salespeople
6. Trades (Home service industry: roofers, electrical, plumb, landscape, construction, repair/remodel, etc)
9. Business consultants
10. Mediators/conflict resolution
11. Frequent travelers/foreign companies
12. Chambers of Commerce
13. Senior management
14. Real estate
15. mortgage companies
16. Stock brokers/financial planners
17. Collections agencies
18. Networking groups
21. Non-Profit Organizations