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Virtual Offices: How to Answer Your Boss’ Pet Peeves

TORONTO—We’ve spent the last several days dissecting Microsoft Canada’s Flexible Workplace survey. There are some relevant and fascinating insights in the survey for virtual office users and would-be virtual office users alike.

I wanted to wrap up this remote worker series with some stats that we didn’t include in the first few installments—noteworthy stats that deserve an explanation. Let’s dive right in. I’ll make my virtual office comments alongside the stats.

First, let’s look at bosses’ top pet peeves in dealing with remote workers:

  • 49% cite the inability to talk face-to-face

  • 26% cite a lack of focus

  • 22% cite a lack of accountability

  • 22% cite the belief that employees are doing less work


Here I see myths and misperceptions. I understand the need to talk face-to-face, but virtual office technologies like web conferencing get you pretty close. You can see eye-to-eye, read body language, make eye contact, etc. Virtual office technologies don’t replace human contact, but they can make up for a lot.

Bosses who think virtual office workers lack focus and accountability—or believe virtual employees are doing less work—aren’t looking through the right lens. Office workers in traditional office space can loaf just as well as a virtual office workers. Virtual office workers who are engaged and empowered tend to be high achievers and self-starters. If your employees aren’t focused, accountable and productive, it may be time to hire new employees.

Other survey data reveals that bosses are much more likely than employees to conduct business in public spaces (62% vs. 34%). The most frequent places mentioned by bosses include:

  • 46% conduct business while driving

  • 29% conduct business on public transportation

  • 25% conduct business at a bar or restaurant


Here again, virtual office technologies can help you stay productive while on the go. Virtual office apps are one way, web conference apps are another. Want to stay productive while mobile? I assure you there is an app for that.

Davinci Virtual Office Solutions has a virtual office app for iPhone and Android devices, as well as plenty of virtual office technologies, virtual receptionists, virtual assistants, and, of course, virtual office space in Toronto.
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Why Do People Really Use Virtual Offices?

TORONTO—Have you ever wondered why people work in virtual offices? Microsoft Canada’s Flexible Workplace study offers some insight into why people choose to work remotely from virtual offices, coworking facilities, airport lounges, home offices and the like.

Specifically, the top reasons survey respondents cite for working remotely are:

48% need to finish work that couldn't be finished at the office
44% want fewer distractions
35% want to be more productive
35% want a better balance of work/home priorities

"You may dismiss this as a Generation-C issue but this speaks broadly to all generations,” says Carolyn Buccongello, vice president of Human Resources with Microsoft Canada. “There are pros and cons to this new way of work, but it is not going away and technology can become the key to resetting those boundaries."

According to Buccongello, there are three core dimensions to transforming business for flexible work:

1. Technology: With the advances technology, the ability to work any time, any place, from virtually anywhere shatters the myth of the office as the primary work location.

2. Places: Canadian workers are on the move from airports, other offices, commuting home on the train. They are becoming more fluid in terms of their physical presence.

3. People: Canadian modern society is shifting as technology becomes commonplace, enabling Canadians to work and communicate in different ways.

"To create a flexible workforce begins with leadership teams building a culture of trust and a vision that focuses on individual results rather than how much time they spend at their desk,” Buccongello says. “You have to empower your people with self-direction. That's not just common sense, that's business sense.”

Do you know what makes common sense and business sense? Virtual office space. Virtual office space can help you avoid distractions, finish work more quickly, and overall be more productive so you can find greater work-life balance. Davinci Virtual Office Space has virtual offices in Toronto and beyond to help you meet your goals.
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Virtual Office Technologies Can Help Connect Bosses, Employees

TORONTO—Last week we started talking about the results of Microsoft Canada’s Flexible Workplace survey, a study that reveals the workstyle preferences of employees and bosses with regards to working remotely--such as from virtual offices--and how they ranked their productivity while working remotely.

Although only 25 percent of Canadian bosses polled feel employees are more productive when working remotely, compared to when in the corporate office, there is good news. Almost half of the polled bosses (42%) say that they do support remote working arrangements for their employees. That means virtual office technologies are on the radar screen.

"As workers juggle longer hours and aim to maintain a work-life balance, employers who can offer flexible workspaces to their employees are leading the pack in becoming employers of choice,” says Mike Kennedy, vice president at Aon Hewitt and National Lead, Health Strategies and Solutions.

“We are seeing more and more that employees are seeking out flexible work arrangements and the opportunity to work outside the office walls—anywhere and anytime, from the airport to the soccer field. And as the competition for top talent continues, particularly for the next generation entering the workforce and for the highly skilled experienced talent, employers who aren't keeping up may be left behind."

There’s at least one aspect of flexible working that both bosses and workers agree on: the need for up-to-date technology. According to the study, 95 percent of bosses and 90 percent of employees polled say it is very important to have similar capabilities when working remotely compared to when working in the office.

"Organizations that will be successful in the future are those that remove the barriers between people, workplace and technology," says James Nicholson, Deployment Specialist for Windows with Microsoft Canada. "When you empower your people by creating a workplace that facilitates flexibility with the technology and solutions that help them to be productive wherever they are, you get the most out of your people."

Indeed, virtual office technologies can help. Davinci Virtual offers virtual office technologies, as well as virtual receptionists and virtual assistants and web conferencing. We also offer virtual office space in Toronto, along with meeting rooms that offer a productive place for distributed teams to meet.
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Survey: Office Workers, Bosses Want Virtual Offices

TORONTO—While many employees are seeking flexible work arrangements—such as telecommuting from a virtual office space—not all of their bosses believe they work as efficiently when they are working outside the office. So says a Microsoft Canada survey.

Microsoft Canada announced the results of its Flexible Workspaces survey, a study that reveals the workstyle preferences of employees and bosses with regards to working remotely and how they ranked their productivity while working remotely.

Only 25 percent of Canadian bosses polled feel employees are more productive when working remotely, such as from a virtual office, compared to when in the corporate office. However, the findings from employees countered the bosses' perceptions, with 55 percent reporting that they believed they were more productive when working from virtual office set ups.

"What we once considered the traditional office is changing,” says James Nicholson, Deployment Specialist for Windows with Microsoft Canada.

“More and more customers, colleagues and technology partners are finding themselves taking business calls from airport waiting lounges, reviewing work documents as they wait at the dentist office or sit on the train, or running important personal errands during their work day. And at the center of their workstyles, people expect increased technological capabilities to keep up with them—everything from real time collaboration with colleagues to video conferencing and secure access to their files."

The traditional office is changing, more and more giving way to executive office suites and virtual offices that cater to mobile workers. Davinci Virtual Office Solutions is helping companies of all sizes, as well as mobile entrepreneurs, tap into productivity-enhancing technologies like virtual offices, virtual assistants, virtual receptionists and more.

Davinci Virtual Offices has a strong virtual office presence in Toronto. The Toronto Star Building is located at 1 Yonge Street in Toronto. You can rent a virtual office at this Toronto location for just $75 a month. The Waterpark Business Center is in Downtown Toronto at 20 Bay Street. You can rent a virtual office there for just $95 a month.

Both virtual office locations offer the opportunity to rent conference rooms and day offices, as well as lobby directly listing, mail forwarding and shipping services, client drop off and pick up options, a business support center and more.
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Do Women Use Virtual Office Space More Than Men?

BOSTON—Women work longer days and report working more often on vacation than their male counterparts. Yet, women also report greater perceived satisfaction with their compensation. So says the FIT’s first Report on Workplace Culture.

Let’s drill into the numbers and look at how virtual office space might ultimately help the cause. Although the majority of respondents (91%) confine their working hours to five days each week, almost half (47%) claim to work more than eight hours each day.

Although it’s not clear how many of those women, if any, use virtual offices, I am confident that those women who work more than eight hours a day are doing at least some workshifting—working remotely from a virtual office on the home front in the early morning or after business hours as they strive to keep pace in a competitive business world.

Fifty-four percent of women report working nine or more hours a day, compared to 41 percent of men. And women (67%) are slightly more willing to work on their vacations than men (60%). Again, women who are working this many hours or working during vacation are almost assuredly tapping into virtual office technologies of some sort. Virtual office technologies help employees maintain some degree productivity regardless of the setting—even poolside on vacation.

A very strong majority (84%) of all employees report that they were "actually sick or caring for a sick child" the last time they called in sick. Roughly 1 in 5 men and 1 in 7 women are lying when it comes to their most recent sick day. Instead, they revealed that they were playing hooky, taking mental health days, suffering from hangovers or interviewing for another job.

With virtual office technologies, women—and men alike—can continue working from a virtual office on the home front while they care for their sick child or even while they are battling a cold. Although employees may not work a full eight-hour day, even the ability to take an important call, answer e-mails in a timely fashion, join a web conference or work on a PPT presentation can keep the engines of productivity revving.
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