Startups and the Virtual Office - Is Physical Office Space Still Necessary?

Posted on 20/12/2018

The golden rule of business is to expect change. When Henry Ford invented the assembly line in 1913, the auto manufacturing industry was changed forever. One hundred years later, the rise of the virtual office is changing the way companies do business. From insurance to marketing, the majority of information-based work and twenty-first century businesses can be run without a dedicated physical office space. Third party companies that rent virtual offices can supply business owners with meeting rooms and conference halls as needed, eliminating the need to rent a large space on a regular basis. Indeed, common business staples like fax machines, email accounts, and a physical address can be handled through a virtual office rental agency, making a physical office space an unnecessary expense. Startups and the Virtual Office - Is Physical Office Space Still Necessary?

Virtual Offices Provide All the Benefits of a Physical Office

Having a physical office offers many benefits. A professional-looking address can impress clients and offer a place to receive mail. A dedicated receptionist on staff can handle a high volume of phone calls, allowing the business owner to carry on with core tasks. When it comes to client meetings, an office space has a much better appearance than a living room in a private home. Virtual offices can meet all of these needs without the upfront expense of leasing a corporate suite. A virtual office offers a mailing address that can be used for business purposes. Many virtual office businesses allow renters to forward office mail to their homes to avoid the inconvenience of having to pick up mail at a secondary location. Traditionally, virtual offices have their own receptionists handle renters' phone calls. This allows small business owners to give the impression that the organization is larger than it actually is, without incurring the cost of hiring a full-time secretary. It also removes the burden of handling phone calls from the business, meaning the business owner can focus on other tasks. Virtual offices often rent out corporate suites for meetings as needed, usually for less than the cost of a permanent office suite.

Virtual Offices are More Cost-Effective Than Physical Offices

Because many different businesses can operate out of the same virtual office, the cost of renting a virtual office is substantially lower than that of renting a physical office. A virtual office offers the professional appearance of a large organization, while fitting into the budget of a lone freelancer. For a company with limited resources that is looking to expand, the virtual office is a cost-effective alternative to renting a physical office space. No longer is a permanent physical office a necessity for a start-up business. With the advent of the Internet, it is possible to run an entire company with only a laptop and a cell phone. However, a growing company will require some kind of office-related organizational services such as a receptionist, a mailing address, and a meeting space. Virtual offices offer all the resources of a physical office, and at a fraction of the cost. During a recession when every dollar counts, cash-strapped start-ups would be wise to abandon the obsolete physical office in favor of a virtual office.
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