The events of recent years, in particular, the COVID-19 pandemic have drastically changed many areas of human daily life. In particular, such aspects as work and education have in many cases switched to the remote mode. Although the pandemic as such is already receding, it hasn’t fully reversed the process initiated by it, and many companies and separate individuals still find it more advantageous to work remotely. In today’s article, we are going to have a look at why, considering the different pros and cons of virtual office over the real one.
What is a virtual office?
Although you most likely know what we talking about, let’s remind you what virtual offices are. By virtual office, we refer to any kind of remote organization of the working process. Depending on the type of work, a virtual office can be realized using various tools, starting with communication via messengers and other communication solutions and ending with team development of more complex projects specially deployed on separate remote servers like Windows VPS hosting. All these tools make virtual office not only possible but also rather practical, offering a bunch of advantages, though not without downsides.
The pros of virtual offices
No rental fees
The first advantage that comes to mind is that without a physical office, you don’t need to pay for the real one. This can significantly cut your expenses considering the current rental fees. Especially if you don’t have a large number of employees, so the physical space doesn’t really pay off.
No regional limitations
With no dependence on the special place on the map, you don’t need to consider employees that are physically accommodated in the region of your office. Instead, you can hire employees from different cities and different countries. You just select the ones that have optiamal competencies for realizing your projects.
Your employees do not have to go anywhere in order to reach the office. With this they are saving a lot of time, and having more opportunities to care about themselves. Furthermore, the reduced use of vehicles reduces the general carbon footprint of your company significantly.
Less management required
By giving the employees the opportunity to manage the whole working process on their own just by using special tools and without much constant supervision, the need for management decreases, the employees become more independent, while the amount of stress and office conflicts reduce.
Less office conflicts
A physical office is a place of encountering of different personalities that have different views on life, lifestyles, and different character traits, which all in the course of long-term contact can eventually clash and lead to personal conflicts. Meanwhile, in virtual offices, excessive personal contact is avoided, while professional communication goes on via videoconferences and similar.
Illnesses don’t pose a big problem
In the conditions of physical offices, even an insignificant ailment could be a valid reason to take a sick leave in order to avoid risks of infecting the other employees with something that can end up being a more serious disease, like influenza or coronavirus. A virtual office allows the employees to continue working as long as they can while being fully safe for their environment, so illnesses will have almost no effect on your company’s productivity.
Cons of virtual office
No physical space
There are different kinds of businesses and not all of them are well adaptable to deployment in the virtual space. Some deal with services that need physical space to receive customers, and some need the work on projects that need simultaneous work of several employees and are thus hard to coordinate virtually. A virtual office can be a good solution, but it doesn’t fit every business.
Less social interactions
Although virtual office gives more personal space and less space for conflicts, people can get tired of sitting home alone and doing their job. Your employees may have different relations with each other, but interacting in real life can bring definite benefits and make the working process a more real and vivid experience. Talks during coffee breaks and just the presence of other people around can make the employee more engaged in the whole process building personal connections and allowing them to perceive their coworkers as real and alive, while online-only communication can affect somehow alienating. Therefore, opting for a virtual office may make you put more effort into building the connection between your employees, which would otherwise develop on its own if you had to deal with a physical office.
Productivity can also suffer
Although more personal space can have a good effect on productivity, there are aspects of the virtual office that can affect it negatively as well. In particular, no obvious distinction between the working place and the living place can make it harder to organize oneself, creating more space for distractions and procrastination. On the other hand, the delayed communication process where one has to write someone and wait for their response instead of just quickly asking directly and in real-time can slow down the whole process leaving space for misunderstandings.
A virtual office is a working model that is increasingly implemented by modern companies. It has a bunch of advantages being able to make the work of your office more flexible and rationalize your resources. Nevertheless, it does have a number of disadvantages, so you have to consider properly, whether you can accept them or not. We hope that this article has helped you to figure it out.
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