Advantages of a Virtual Office
The way we work has dramatically changed in the internet age. Between home-based businesses, freelancing, and telecommuting, our “home base” for our jobs is no longer just one place. Virtual offices (bureaux virtuel) are one example of that. But are they really a good thing? There are lots of benefits of a virtual office, actually.
One of the biggest advantages of a virtual office is the environmental benefits. As in, the positive impact working from home can have on the planet. With more and more people staying at home to work, there are fewer cars on the road during each day’s two rush hour periods, which cuts down on vehicle emissions and fuel consumption. This is particularly beneficial for bigger city centres in which the potential for negative environmental impact is significant.
Working in a virtual environment can also save workers money. When you stay home, you won’t spend money on lunches out, gas, parking, a work wardrobe (you can work in your sweatpants!) your daily gourmet coffee fix, makeup, etc. Plus, there are many tax write-offs associated with working from home that are not applicable to those who work in an office. That means more of your paycheque stays in your pocket.
Productivity in a telecommuting environment ha been shown to be high, although this seems to be counterintuitive. Instead of spending hours commuting to and from work and sitting in traffic, those hours can be dedicated to actually working. Telecommuting also offers the flexibility of working a broken-up work day, which allows for a work-life balance which, in itself, can make for happier workers and increased productivity. Finally, productivity is increased because certain distractions such as interruptions by other employees and the hustle and bustle of a busy office.
Of course, there are some jobs for which telecommuting isn’t possible, but for the most part anything that can be done in an office setting can be done through telecommuting. Virtual work isn’t without its disadvantages, however. It takes a huge amount of self-discipline and focus to get one’s work done when there is no one standing over you nagging you to get it done. Add to that the lure of other distractions such as social media and the pile of laundry in the corner that is calling your name and it’s easy to see why so many people find that they are not suited to being productive in an at-home environment. However, if you are a motivated self starter who can focus on the job at hand, working in a virtual office can be very rewarding. You’ll spend more time with your family and less time in traffic, and how can that possibly be a bad thing?