Reviewed by Aug 27, 2020| Updated on
What is Meant by Virtual Office?
A virtual office provides companies with a physical address and workplace-related facilities, without a lengthy lease and administrative staff overhead. Employees can work from any place with a virtual office but still have things, such as a mailing address, telephone answering services, meetings, and video conferencing.
It is most prevalent in the United States of America. It has recently spread its presence across the world, including India.
Virtual Offices Explained
Digital offices serve customers as one entity but do not live in a fixed spot. This form of setup is particularly common among startups and small businesses looking to reduce overhead.
The development of software and services for web-based office collaboration, such as video conferencing, has helped improve growth in virtual offices.
Furthermore, a virtual office can contribute to higher efficiency, because of its services, free staff for administrative tasks, as well as lesser commutes. Each employee should operate from the most convenient location, and the company is not restricted to recruiting locally based employees.
The advantages of a virtual workplace are instantly apparent, as more people find ways to function remotely. Nevertheless, some might find that virtual office space scheduling is not different from the time-consuming scheduling difficulties in a conventional physical office.
Pros and Cons of a Virtual Office
A virtual office's appeal to the consumers is two-fold. Firstly, a virtual office's monthly expense is much less than a typical office's expenses. It is due to the absence of any repair and operating costs and less need for staffing. A monthly contract can also protect a virtual office, so if a user's business shifts, there is more flexibility.
In the USA, the cost of using a virtual office can be as low as $50 for membership fees, and $250 a month or more for a monthly standard service contract. The more things it puts in, the more expensive it would be. In India, the prices for virtual workspaces starts as low as Rs 650 per month, ranging up to Rs 1,000 per month.
Second, a mailing address will be provided for the virtual office. It includes answering the telephone and video conferencing services. Even a small company can look larger than it is. It can also provide users with a physical address (or multiple addresses) to reach clients. Often the address will lend a high quality to a user of a virtual office as if the address were a popular location or street.
Many of the facilities provided by a virtual office system are based on pre-planning. Many shared office space packages come with restricted use of conference rooms or restricted facilities, such as teleconferencing and video conference. Digital offices may have limited night and weekend access. There may be a lack of versatility, making it restricting and uncomfortable.
Also, there is a high potential for disruptions that come with working from home, and certain employees may not be as successful when operating in a virtual office environment.