The world is moving fast, and the virtual world, even faster.
As the internet became ubiquitous, and the world grew flatter, and the concept of the virtual assistant took off. What is a virtual assistant? He or she is usually a contract or freelance worker who does their job from their home, often, but not always, in a country different from their employer. They focus on the type of tasks that an administrative assistant or secretary would perform, such as managing email, helping to put together presentations, scheduling meetings, and online research. While the debate goes on in the US regarding our $7.25/hr minimum wage, there are countries where such an income is not only a living wage, but a good one, relatively speaking. The Philippines has a median monthly wage of 30,000 PHP which converts to approximately US$675. Less than US$5 per hour, it’s a bit above what the average teacher makes in the Philippines. This creates an interesting opportunity; the ability to hire someone to perform tasks to help grow your business before you are able to afford to hire a local full time person.
There comes a point in the evolution of your business when you need a presence, a physical address, a conference room to meet a client. A full time rented office might set you back thousands per month, far more than you’re ready to spend, and you might not need a full office just yet. The time may be right to consider a virtual office. A virtual office such as the ones offered by the Australia-based Servcorp offer a variety of packages to give your business a presence at a prestigious address. A meeting package gives you access to beautiful boardrooms on a pay-as-you-go plan as well as access to business lounges worldwide. A communications package offers a local phone number with dedicated receptionist and call forwarding to a number of your choosing. An address package can offer you an address for your business card and correspondence, as well as a location for your mail and packages to be shipped.
When you consider the cost of a physical full time office along with the overhead it entails, you might decide that the combination of employees working from home or customer site combined with a virtual office presence for high level meetings can offer the best of both worlds at a significant cost savings.