Many office workers would rather work remotely than go into an office. The reasons may vary between people, but commuting, office politics, and bad coffee likely rank high on the list. Virtual offices could gain in popularity if they were viewed as unique, or different office solutions that are viable.
A professional virtual office gives employers an address to receive mail, and perhaps a means of receiving customer calls. This allows a business to meet customers needs and the needs of their employees. As the workplace has changed over the past sixty years, certain topics have become part of the national debate. Affordable childcare, diversity, wage equality, maternity leave– hot talking points like these have led managers to seek different office solutions to keep good workers. Coupled with the rising price of rent, working remotely becomes appealing to higher management, too.
It used to be that work could only be completed at the place of business, or the office. But with more and more of our files going digital, there is no longer anything specifically tying workers to their desks. Work can come home with you, as so many stressed workers who keep their work phone on them know. But those employees become stressed because they are working around the clock. It shows that employees in most fields of business can pretty much work anywhere with an internet connection, but that there should still be set hours when they are expected to work.
In businesses that rely primarily on customer service, employees need only a computer and a phone to work from home. Their job is tied to their ability to listen to and problem solve with the customer. It is the type of work that depends more on the skill of the worker than the state of the office space.
Some professionals may worry that employees will not work as hard at their tasks if they are not in an office space. To refute that, one study by the American Management Association found that there was a 63% reduction in unscheduled absences when a telecommuting program was implemented. Another study revealed that companies that had began using these different office solutions had a 46% reduction in attrition. On top of these benefits, the company had to pay less for office space, thereby lowering their operating costs.
People dislike commuting for work. If they have an especially bad route to take, one poll revealed that 14% of workers had actually changed jobs just to shorten their commute. It is a perk of working in a virtual office, that the different office solutions take into account factors outside of work that can have a huge effect on a person’s productivity. When the weather turns bad during the day, employees will stop focusing on work and will instead focus on how they will get back home.
Virtual offices first began in the 1990s. It is surprising, with the rising gas prices and increased scrutiny of childcare, that these types of different office solutions are not more popular. A solution that can increase productivity, lower attrition, and lower operating costs can only be good.