Virtual offices have streamlined the way business is conducted for many companies, eliminating the need and overhead associated with hiring in-house receptionists and administrative staff. In fact, virtual offices have nearly replaced physical offices, and the rise of virtual offices have saved many, many companies the costs of opening up shop in a new space.
Virtual offices are used by companies ranging from startups to corporations looking to open a headquarters in a new area. A survey revealed that 70% of large corporations are using virtual offices, while 62% of small businesses are now using virtual offices.
Through this article, our friends at VirtualOffice.Sydney are going to share with you six major tools that all virtual offices should be using. Whether you’ve launched your own virtual office service or are looking into using a virtual office for your own company, these are 6 tools everyone in the virtual office industry should be using.
1. Virtual Answering Service
A virtual answering service serves as an around the clock communications attendant, offering a continuous presence for those who might call your number. Companies benefit from virtual answering services because their clients know they are always available. This ensures ease in communications between clients and companies, and it increases customer satisfaction overall.
A virtual answering service is a critical part of any virtual office if you want to ensure that clients receive the best in customer support around the clock.
2. VoIP Phone Service
VoIP phone service has revolutionized business communications for a number of reasons. First, it’s a low-cost option for a full spectrum telephone service. VoIP phone services are cost-effective, but they are highly reliable and can be used wherever there’s internet service with great quality. VoIP phone services often give the advantage of making no-cost long-distance phone calls, which is a great benefit for companies doing international business. Plus, VoIP phone services typically serves up rich features such as auto attendant, voicemail to e mail, unified inbox, mobile apps for on the go access, and find me.
VoIP phone service is budget-friendly and packed with features, meaning that it should definitely be a part of any virtual office.
3. Cloud Storage Service
Cloud storage service is a clear necessity for any company that needs to upload, share, modify, and sync documents. Cloud storage service is much cheaper than on-site storage options, plus it’s far more reliable.
Users can easily access cloud storage from virtually anywhere and at anytime. The convenience of cloud storage service alone necessitates why it would be a must-have part of any virtual office out there.
Some of the most popular cloud storage platforms on the market today include Google Drive, Dropbox, Amazon Cloud, and Onedrive.
Many cloud storage services do offer free accounts, but it’s highly recommended to use an enterprise-level account in a business setting for heightened control and security over documents. Online backup means protection from hardware failures, viruses, and remote access challenges while ensuring that users can access, modify, and sync their documents easily.
4. Collaboration Solutions
The age of information and globalization has forever changed the way companies do business. Teams today rely on unified connections to collaborate, and this is why collaboration solutions must be included in a virtual office.
There are a number of online collaboration platforms today, such as Wrike, Trello, Slack, Quip, and Basecamp. They each offer tools and features that will work better for others.
The key to getting the most out of collaboration solutions is to find the platform that serves you the best. If you are using or running a virtual office, you’ve got to make sure that a powerful online collaboration platform is in place.
5. Web Conferencing Abilities
Collaboration solutions are excellent for helping teams stay on top of projects and tasks, but web conferencing is necessary when collaboration tools won’t cut it. For instance, if you have a client who needs to have a face-to-face meeting with you and you’re 1,000 miles away, you need a portal. Of course, Skype is always great for one-on-one interactions, but if you need to have a board meeting, then Skype might not be your best option.
There are a number of web conference platforms that can serve your needs, no matter how big or small they might be. For instance, AnyMeeting, Zoom, and Google Hangouts can all be used to create professional web conferences.
If you need to deliver messages to your clients or team via conferences, then your virtual office needs to have web conferencing in mind.
6. Social Media Management Platform
Of course, no business presence in the age of digital marketing is complete without social media. If you want to stay connected with customers and provide a truly world-class experience, your social media accounts need to be active and engaging.
For many companies, managing social media accounts can be tricky and time consuming. Fortunately, there are platforms that let you manage all your social media accounts. You can easily schedule posts and manage various aspects of your social media.
Platforms such as Buffer, HootSuite, MeetEdgar, and TweetDeck are used by companies around the world to facilitate their social media presences.
If you want to grow your company by staying connected with your customers and prospects, a social media management platform must be a part of your virtual office.
A virtual office is an amazing way to streamline business operations while reducing overhead. In fact, using a virtual office can help grow your company in ways you never dreamed. By using a virtual office and the tools it offers, your company will automate and outsource tasks that can be handled elsewhere, and this gives you more time to focus on income-producing activities.
Whether you’re making crafts or selling real estate to global clients, a virtual office can be a huge benefit. The key to an excellent virtual office are the tools it uses, and any great virtual office will offer the kinds of tools we’ve discussed today.