Virtual offices are rented spaces away from the company’s headquarters with online business solutions that allow employees to work from anywhere worldwide. This type of work scheme is nowadays a powerful trend. Although it is an option long ago present in the business world, now is taking advantage of the most recent evolution of business strategies and technologies.
In this article, we will analyze the opinions that consider this form of organization as ineffective and even harmful. Also, we address the degree of certainty of these criticisms and how to overcome specific problems.
- What are the most important features of virtual offices?
- What are the main arguments against virtual offices?
- Is this a relevant debate for companies in the 21st century?
- How to help you take advantage of virtual offices in Dubai?
1. What are the Most Important Features of Virtual Offices?
The regular work office is by no means a relic to be left in the past. But most of the work that is done from there, with the current technologies could be very well done from rented virtual offices.
Those offices can be fully remote, including work done from home. In addition to the savings in installation, they have a notable advantage: contracting remotely. Consequently, renting these offices allows you to benefit from talents wherever they are.
The other big advantage is to increase the quality time of the employees. It is proven that with this work scheme, they can give more of themselves in the development of their work.
Keep in mind that there is no complete correspondence between renting virtual offices and home telecommuting. In the first case, there is a specific commercial activity of renting real estate, while working from home does not. In other words, we will be talking mainly about a working model that includes an impressive real estate part.
1.1 The strategy behind renting virtual offices
Renting virtual offices is a global thing. Therefore, it is possible to obtain these offices anywhere in the world. For example, the business of renting virtual offices in Dubai, where we are located, is very strong. These are real offices because of their tangibility but metaphorically are virtual ones in terms of the company that rents them.
Using virtual offices, customers can have on-demand the same facilities and equipment as any office within the company headquarters. From extra space to communications abroad, if required.
The strategy of companies that rent remotely is to have a global presence, employ native talent and reach local customers, partners, and suppliers. Observing these possibilities we can realize the relevance of what we are talking about.
1.2 Some more benefits of virtual offices
Indeed, many companies may not need physical office spaces of their own. They can wisely consider having each team member work individually, with minimal contact with centralized management and co-workers. Among the possible advantages of such a scheme, we find:
- More freedom for the worker to continue producing what is expected of him, or even more if he feels motivated
- These virtual offices can use or not all the dotation of a regular office
- They transfer the weight of supervision to the same worker, producing an additional saving
- New technologies promote decentralized jobs, even outside the large cities, improving the quality of life without changing jobs
Additionally, this scheme allows:
- Offices in multiple locations using small or large facilities according to needs and strategies
- Remote meetings, connecting with employees in far places through video conferencing services
- Operating at low costs because you pay only what you use
- Savings on traditional costs by not buying, installing, or maintaining office space and equipment with much idle time.
- Customizing it including various technological, administrative, and support services
- In all cases, you only pay for what you rent and during its time of use
But of course, there are also detractors to these arguments.
2. What are the Main Arguments Against Virtual Offices?
This way of working has also had countless voices against it. It is mandatory to analyze their arguments. There are three groups of opinions:
- The first group is reasonings that emphasize the loss of professionalism and productivity
- A second group gives prominence to the increase in employee discomfort
- And the third gives relevance to high costs and poor offers
When presenting each contrary opinion, we will discuss its degree of certainty and how to approach a solution.
2.1 Arguments that emphasize the loss of professionalism and productivity
In this case, it is questioned whether the main activities are carried out correctly with this type of organization.
2.1.1 Inability to maintain productivity
As we are not talking simply about renting rooms, this is false. Conversely, virtuality is a tool to increase productivity. It is so because it gives more degrees of freedom, initiative, and motivation.
If your employees are those who need to be guided and disciplined, then virtualization could not be an option.
On the other hand, there are alternatives to improve virtual performance:
- Norms for face-to-face communications, even if remote
- Clear and feasible objectives known to all
- Constructive criticism knowing that everyone is responsible for the final results
- A competitive and collaborative environment to react quickly if something goes wrong
2.1.2 Productivity decreases
This is an argument even more extreme. It emphasizes the allegedly destructive nature of remote work because workers without supervision tend not to work at all.
In short, this statement is baseless reasoning as studies show the opposite. Productivity depends on motivation, not on supervision or virtualization.
Last but not least, the fact that there are no face-to-face supervisors does not mean that they cannot exist remotely.
2.1.3 The business’ image is damaged
Behind this idea is the belief that a rented office is only for businesses that lack capital. Sometimes could be true, but usually is an intrinsic problem of the firm in question, not a result of its use of virtual offices.
If we look at established companies, the use of these kinds of premises rather allows them to expand their locations and provide experiences close to their customers. Of course, marketing strategies must address and resolve those possible misperceptions.
2.2 Arguments that emphasize the increase in employee discomfort
These arguments highlight growing unrest among participants. For example:
2.2.1 Human contact decreases, sense of belonging is lost
This is true if the community of workers disappears. This requires management beyond the renting functions. It is not wasting time planning face-to-face team sessions and social meetings outside of business hours.
In addition, if the idea is to deepen the company’s virtualization, these activities will strengthen the work teams and the sense of belonging.
2.2.2 The valuation of the business environment falls
This reasoning is based on a vision of rented virtual offices as empty or depressing spaces, without support staff, communications, internet, receptionist, and not even photocopies or coffee.
Quite the contrary, the usual virtual office provider, in the UAE for example, offers all these options and gives the tenant the freedom to choose the services they want. Instead, everything that could be required is available on demand. In short, the professional environment is designed, proposed, and acquired by the interested party.
2.2.3 They do not offer security or confidentiality
Although these seem like legitimate concerns, they are also artificial.
On the one hand, confidence depends on your provider selection. With the current level of competition, it is normal for providers to strive to resolve all types of contingencies.
Regarding information leaks, it is just as possible to find a way to extract valuable information from any site, be it a traditional office or a virtual one. The work is to establish rules and training actions suitable to this reality, including signed accords with the providers.
2.3 Arguments that emphasize high costs and poor support
This third group of reasoning reflects concerns about costs or losses.
2.3.1 Virtual offices are economically too costly
Some people think that virtual offices are hard to rent because of their costs. On the contrary, these offices provide benefits in many ways, including lower overhead costs, lesser expenses in office equipment, maintenance, and the similar. They even allow savings in better use of time by workers.
2.3.2 It is demanding to manage a virtual office package
If you look carefully at that task, it is easier than dealing with creating your own offices. Barring any unusual adaptation, these places are readily available because regular refitting is the specialty of these vendors.
No architects, no dealing with builders, no complex planning. All this must be added to the savings provided by renting virtual offices.
2.3.3 They are very scarce
This is not true. Nowadays, this kind of business functions globally. Thus, we can observe that in countries like the UAE, renting virtual offices is among the main booming businesses.
Of course, the demand is also growing. And that makes it hard to obtain the space that you most prefer. For this reason, among the business plans that any modern company must advance have to be included a real estate plan. Doubtless, it is also necessary to foresee what types of physical and virtual spaces will be necessary, to deal with from now on.
3. Is this a Relevant Debate for Companies in the 21st Century?
The answer is yes. In that sense, note that we are talking about ways of managing businesses that are constantly evolving. Virtual offices involve strategic business thinking related to:
- Access to the most attractive markets in the world
- The ability to get the best out of your workers by motivation, not by control or force
- The better use of technological tools
In summary, think about the following:
- Highlight your business needs and how to serve them with new locations
- Take better gains of customer motivations thanks to nearness and flexibility
- Bring to light the characteristics of your products and services
- Save on spaces and costs of regular offices
- Boost the productivity of employees who love their freedom and do not require more supervision
We are presenting you with one of the most modern business scenery. Seemingly only referred to real estate, it is about business strategy, customer management, human resources deployment, and technology application. Taking advantage of renting virtual offices may be the best option you have had in a long time.
4. How to Help You Take Advantage of Virtual Offices in Dubai?
Virtual offices are booming nowadays and we have presented many aspects to think about. On the outline is learning how to reap the benefits of new locations, more inspired employees, and lower building and maintenance costs.