Davinci Virtual Blog



Budget-Minded Entrepreneurs Explore Virtual Offices

Bootstrapping, budget-minded entrepreneurs are exploring virtual offices in a down economy. But it's not just the affordable monthly costs that has start-ups jumping on the virtual office bandwagon (and it's not just the down economy, either) it's the affordable start-up costs that make good sense for companies of all sizes.

Unlike renting traditional office space, launching a virtual office comes with little upfront expense. Sure, you may have to buy a new computer, hook up a new phone line, or extend the minutes on your cell phone plan. Yes, you may have to get letterhead printed, design some business cards, and perhaps even build a Web site. But those are all typical business start-up costs.

In other words, you'd have to do all that anyway. With a virtual office, you merely shed the brick-and-mortar overhead by working from home (or at your favorite coffee shop). Altogether, virtual offices are helping start ups get off to a good start without the stress of a long-term lease hanging over their head.

The virtual office is a place to grow from, and may actually offer additional advantages for under-resourced boot-strappers. For example, you'll probably find you and your employees are more productive in a virtual office set up because there's no commute time and fewer distractions from co-workers at the water cooler. All in all, the risk-free, low-cost nature of virtual offices are offering entrepreneurs the flexibility they need to succeed.

Every Office Can Be a Corner Office

Everybody wants the corner office. It's the most desirable spot because it's usually the largest space on the floor – and it often offers the best view.

The good news is when you tap into virtual office space, you (and all your employees if you have a distributed workforce) can brag about having the coveted corner office all to yourself. Of course, that corner office is in the comfort of your own home.

Perhaps even better than having the "corner office" all to yourself is the ability to do business from just about anywhere at any time without missing a beat. When you work from a virtual office space, you can work beyond the four walls of a home office. You can work from a coffee shop, a train depot, a doctor's office, or just about anywhere else life takes you.

Indeed, there's no need to lose productivity when you work from a virtual office space. So long as you are equipped with a laptop, a Wi-Fi connection, and a cell phone, your virtual office space can travel with you and keep your overhead to a minimum. Your phones can be answered by a professional virtual receptionist, your mail delivered to a prestigious business address, and your clients can meet you in a state-of-the-art meeting room when you work from a virtual office space.

One of the key advantages of the virtual office space is avoiding commute time. When you use a virtual office space, commuting to your corner office often means taking a few steps from the bedroom to the spare bedroom where your high-tech bells and whistles await. Even if your home office isn't in the corner and doesn't offer a view, you may decide that working in a virtual office space could actually be more coveted than the old-fashioned corner office.

Telecommuting: More Productive, Less Expensive

Slashing Staffing Costs with Virtual Assistants

Need some help around the office but aren't sure the time is right to hire a full-time staffer? If you answered "yes," to that question, you may be a candidate for a virtual assistant.

Virtual assistants are a cost-effective way to find qualified and competent help in a hurry – and they can focus on the specific tasks you need help with. Much different than calling a temporary employment agency to hire part-time help for a defined contractual period, virtual assistants give you the freedom of on-demand help.

The virtual assistant model makes it possible for your company to hire a marketing assistant for six hour a week, for example, or someone to book travel as the occasion arises. The virtual assistant model doesn't tie you down to a specific number of hours each week – and you don't have to host them at your facility. They can work from anywhere.

Virtual assistants also allow you to play against time. For example, if your company's clients are concentrated on the West Coast but your headquarters are on the East Coast, you can hire a virtual assistant on the West Coast to handle phone calls and other tasks after your normal business hours. It works in the opposite direction as well. An East Coast-based virtual assistant can take calls and requests before your West Coast business opens its doors in the morning.

And since virtual assistants have their own office equipment, you don't have to furnish them with computers and telephones to get the job done. Then there's the issue of productivity. Your full-time staff can concentrate on agenda items that only they can handle and rely on a virtual assistant to take on more rote tasks that nonetheless need to be done.

Who’s Answering Your Phones?

Customers expect a professional, personalized greeting when they call your office – but that doesn’t mean the person who answers your phones has to be located in your office, does it? Thanks to the virtual receptionist, the answer is no, it doesn’t.

In fact, you may be surprised to discover that a virtual receptionist may be answering the phones at your doctor’s office, accountant or other professional service firm. Because they are professional and knowledgeable, you couldn’t tell the difference. That’s because the virtual receptionist seamlessly fields questions, deals with appointment setting and otherwise handles issues an on-site receptionist would – all from a remote location.

With virtual office technologies, this is not only possible, it’s a growing trend in business today. And it’s not an issue of outsourcing overseas. Virtual receptionists are stationed in the United States, and understand the language and customs so there are no dialect or cultural issues to overcome (that you may have experienced with many call centers).

The virtual receptionist offers all the benefits of an on-site staff member without the overhead costs associated with hiring an on-site staff member. Specifically, that means no weekly salary, no health insurance costs, and no vacation time. For all these reasons, virtual receptionists are being used by companies large and small more and more often.