A virtual office can be a great way for your business to save on overhead costs while increasing profits and expanding its reach. Because it exists primarily online, a virtual office allows you to conduct business anywhere - whether you're in your home office or on the beach.
Although it allows for freedom and flexibility, a virtual office can lead to frustration if you don't have the right tools, resources and processes in place to set up your business for success.
Below are some useful tips that can help you make the most effective transition.
1. Map Out and Validate Your Strategy:
Perhaps you do have a physical office, but would like to complement it with virtual assistants. Or, maybe you truly are starting with nothing and want to go 100% virtual from the beginning. No matter what your ultimate goals are, it helps to map out your strategy before diving in.
Having a business plan will help map out your strategy and discover all the needs for your business. A business plan should include:
- Executive summary
- Company description
- Market analysis on the industry and your competitors
- Organization and management structure
- Products or services you offer
- Marketing and sales strategy
- Funding request (if necessary)
- Financial projections
Establishing this strategy up front will help you determine your needs for staffing, resources, tools, Workspace and business entity type — all critical to making sure your virtual operations are smooth. Contact Icon Offices today for free advice and guidance on how to set up your UK based virtual business.
2. Establish Your Workspace:
The idea of working anywhere in the world is one aspect of going virtual that many are attracted to. However, if you don't have the right setup, it can be a struggle to concentrate and be productive
Aside from a home office, coworking spaces are becoming more common. These spaces serve as an office for those who are working independently or in small teams. Icon Offices also provides a variety of co- working / shared office packages starting from only £60 per person per month, in a number of different business centres spread across London and Essex.
3. Set up a Business Address:
Having a physical business address will help you establish credibility as a virtual entrepreneur. A virtual business address will allow you to forward your mail to a street address in a state you want to do business in (even if you're not actually in that state). Virtual mailboxes can also scan your mail and send digital copies of the items to your email.
That way, you can be working anywhere and still know what important items and documents are coming to your mailbox (without having to physically be there). Icon Offices has a total of 4 addresses to choose from as the face of your business which can be used as you UK Registered Address, UK Correspondence Address, UK Trading Address. Our locations include.
- Hatton Garden in Holborn London
- East Ham in East London
- Hainault in Ilford, Essex
- Chadwell Heath in Romford Essex
4. Obtain a Virtual Business Address:
No virtual office is complete without a professional address to receive mail at. You don't have to actually reside at the business address your mail gets sent to.
Using such a service, you can:
- Check by phone to see if mail has arrived
- Get automatic e-mail notifications when mail has arrived
- Take advantage of extended pick-up hours
- Have your mail automatically and confidentially forwarded to you at home
Icon Offices offers a full range of mail handling, and mail forwarding packages.
5. Get a Virtual Voip Phone System:
If you've owned a 'real office' before, the idea of getting a phone system installed in an hour might sound like a pipe dream. But with a virtual phone system, the fantasy is a reality. A virtual phone system lets any business get up and running in just a few quick steps. All it takes is:
- Picking a business phone number
- Recording a customized main greeting
- Adding departments and employees
That's it. Following these simple steps, you and your team will be able to take calls and receive Voicemails from anywhere you happen to be. Icon Offices has a range of UK Voip Services and Packages to meet all budgets and requirements. We provide full support and can assist you in having your phone lines set up with maximum convenience.
6. Hire a Virtual Assistant:
There are many benefits to hiring a virtual assistant. If you're a new business owner, a virtual assistant (VA) can help you understand how to delegate tasks efficiently and organize a team.
You might be wondering exactly what tasks a VA can perform - the answer is almost anything! Some Virtual Assistants specialize in certain skills, like editing your content and materials, while others help with tasks like ordering supplies, scheduling meetings, running your social media accounts or completing organizational tasks. A VA can be an invaluable tool for your business, taking certain tasks off your plate to help you focus on big-picture initiatives.
Hire a virtual project manager to take over the coordination of all of your on-going projects. They'll help your business transition from traditional to virtual, and they'll put simple yet effective systems into place to help your virtual staff stay on top of tasks. As far as UK based virtual assistants are concerned we provide a easy to set up 24 hour 7 days a week Call Answering Service which is one of the cheapest offered by any Company in the UK. We simply take a message from your caller and email it to you.
7. Choose the Right Communication and Stay Connected:
A fast connection will help ensure enough bandwidth for voice and video calls, online meetings, and conferencing while processing files and updating records.
You must have access to collaboration and communication tools that can optimize their workflow which include virtualization, digitization, and remote connections, so make sure that you have tools that help you keep pace with the demands of your job. Essential communication tools include an email provider, such as Outlook or Gmail, Instant messaging, softphones or IP phone terminals that work with your VoIP provider.
8. Acquire Tools and Resources:
There are many different platforms and online resources that can replace or replicate what you'd do if you were actually in an office space.
For example, if you're looking for a way to communicate with your clients and coworkers, Slack is a great tool for staying in touch (and reducing the number of emails you receive). Zoom is an amazing tool for meetings, with video chat capabilities giving you a more personal feeling than the phone.
The options are endless for operating a virtual office. With the right setup, you can expand into new territories (without investing in actual office space), work with talent from all over the world and have more Work-life balance. Icon Offices has a range of packages and services that can assist you on your journey.