Technology has opened up a new world for businesses across the world. Individuals living in different countries far from each other can now do business together with the Internet and cloud-based services that allow businesses to store data online. Businesses can use video chats and instant messages to contact clients quickly from anywhere in the world. All this new technology has enabled working from home to become a reality for many business professionals. With the invention of several virtual business services, many business types can be operated completely from home offices around the globe.
Working from Home
In the past, working from home was inefficient and difficult. Employees had to take a large amount of paperwork and information home with them so they could complete reports or make client phone calls from work. Now that the Internet is so widespread, more and more companies are using digital formats for their files and other information. Employees are able to access these files from anywhere, enabling them to work from home without problems or hassle. Allowing employees to work from home improves employee morale, and cuts down on the expense of running a large office full of expensive equipment. When employees work from home, they can use their own computers and equipment to complete each task, saving the company money.
Virtual LAN Connections and Cloud Storage
Most office spaces have a large server room somewhere in the building that hosts all of the company’s data. These servers take up a large amount of space and require constant backing to prevent the loss of data. Some companies are now switching to virtual LAN connections and cloud storage for their data. Storing data online prevents the need for large storage areas to hold servers and other computer equipment and also protects the data from physical loss. Backing up virtual data is also easier than physically backing up files. Virtual LAN connections allow employees to connect to the company intranet from anywhere in the world. This makes it easier for employees to work on location and from home.
Even though virtual information hosting and working from home is a possibility for many businesses, not every part of business can be done virtually. Sometimes a company needs a face-to-face meeting with clients or employees. Virtual office companies provide a temporary physical location for customers to use to meet clients, host meetings, and perform business tasks on a temporary basis. Virtual offices also provide other services, such as phone answering services, so a business sounds more professional, or physical offices to rent, which can give businesses legitimacy without the high cost of actually renting a physical location full-time.
Retaining Employee Accountability and Productivity
One problem that many businesses have with the ideal of virtual workers is accountability. Business leaders are afraid that employees would be less productive at home, spending most of their day with time wasters rather than focusing on work. This is a legitimate concern, and something that holds many companies back from adding a work at home program. Luckily, there are many options available for keeping track of employee activities. Some companies offer time-logging programs that help keep employees on task. Other programs can actually monitor an employee’s computer to find exactly what they do on their computer all day. These programs go a long way toward helping employee stay on task even while at home. Virtual programs, such as virtual meetings and daily chats can also help keep virtual employees on task from day to day. These programs are key to establishing good worth ethic among virtual employees.
Many employees dream of the day they can quit their day job and work from home. With the fast advances in virtual technology, more and more businesses have the option of adding virtual work programs to their business. Naturally, not all types of business can have virtual programs, such as businesses that require hands-on labor, but many traditional office jobs can benefit greatly from the money and time-saving benefits that virtual programs and working from home can bring.
By: Dustin Lewis