Virtual office services
Written by Ana Canteli on 30 January 2023
Now financed thanks to the Next Generation program, virtual office services are tools and services that allow companies and freelancers to work remotely or from anywhere. These services include, among others: virtual postal address, telephone answering, mail and parcel reception, meeting room, and workspace management, access to printing and scanning services, and electronic invoicing. These services help maintain a professional image while reducing costs such as renting a physical space. Service is offered as a virtual office. Conceived to provide administration and assistance services to organizations and independent professionals. Electronic invoicing can be one such service offered by software providers such as OpenKM.
To implement virtual office services in your company, follow these steps:
What do you have to do to implement a virtual office?
Suppose you are interested in benefiting from the advantages that the implementation of virtual office tools can bring you and also take advantage of the Acelera Pyme program grant. In that case, you should follow the following recommendations:
- Identify the needs: as a previous step, it is necessary to determine which virtual office services are the most suitable for your organization.
- Select the provider: there are several providers of virtual office services with different service portfolios and prices. In this regard, OpenKM is a digitizing agent recognized by the Next Generation grant program.
- Set a budget: Set a budget for the virtual office service, considering monthly, annual, and setup costs. Within the framework of the Digital Kit, OpenKM undertakes to adjust the economic offer so that, if necessary, 100% is covered by the digital voucher.
- Implement the service: this phase is handled by the selected virtual office tools provider so that the company can directly use the requested virtual office services.
- Train staff: This step is often forgotten when implementing new technological solutions, but it is no less critical. It is essential to train the team to use the virtual office services correctly to guarantee an exemplary implementation. At OpenKM, we are committed to offering the best end-user experience. For this reason, through the OpenKM Academy, we provide tailor-made training programs for different user profiles.
- Monitor and update: It is advisable to monitor the use and effectiveness of virtual office tools, especially in the initial phase, and make adjustments if necessary. The OpenKM software, through the administration panel and process management functionalities, facilitates both the task of controlling and supervising the personnel and updating the software configuration.
It is essential to have a good collaboration and communication strategy to get the most out of it. Through training, consulting, and customization services, OpenKM has the tools and experience to implement virtual office services successfully.
Virtual office services
Next, we are going to describe the most used virtual office services.
- Virtual mailing address: A virtual postal mailing address is different from an email address. This is a physical address that a virtual office service provider provides. The address is the primary mailing address for the business and is used to receive postal correspondence, such as letters and packages. The companies that provide this service can use OpenKM to record the inputs and outputs of documentation and parcels, manage warehouse space, and notify customers of their correspondence via email or SMS. Usually, the mail received is scanned and sent digitally to the client's email. You can also choose to receive it in physical format at the address specified by the company. In this case, OpenKM can be used to keep the client informed about the status of their content. The virtual email address is handy if the company does not have a physical office or if it changes addresses frequently.
- Telephone answering: Virtual office services are provided by a person or an automated system to answer incoming telephone calls from the company. This service ensures that all calls are responded to, even when staff cannot answer them. There are several types of telephone answering:
- Automated reply: This is a pre-recorded message that provides general information about the company, such as customer service, technical support, office hours, etc.
- Human Answering: A person who answers phone calls on behalf of the company. They can provide specific information, take messages, and transfer calls to the appropriate team members.
Telephone answering in virtual office services is handy for small businesses or freelancers with no team available for customer service. It provides a more professional image and ensures that all calls are answered.
- Digital scanning and sending: virtual office service companies can scan received correspondence and send it digitally to the client's email; this allows them to check and manage their correspondence from anywhere. OpenKM, thanks to the document digitization and scanning functionalities, ensures and automates these processes. In addition, document management software can be used to expedite additional services, such as postage, spam return, mail reading, and sorting.
- Printing and scanning equipment: with OpenKM, the company can configure access to printing and scanning equipment in different locations. This allows documents to be printed and scanned without worrying about the availability or cost of their equipment, which is the responsibility of the online print and scan service provider. This last option allows you to send documents from anywhere and pick them up at a nearby location. These services can also be customized for business cards and brochures, as with printing jobs. And these services, thanks to the implementation of the virtual office, can evolve as far as we want; writing services, graphic design, etc.
- Access to meeting rooms: thanks to virtual office services, meeting rooms can be offered in different locations. Thus, any client who needs it can have adequate space for meetings and presentations without incurring fixed rental and variable expenses for consumables. With OpenKM, you can also offer an online meeting room reservation service. This allows you to plan your meetings quickly and efficiently and ensure you have a suitable space at the right time. Or even manage extra services related to the preparation and development of meetings, such as catering, audiovisual equipment, etc.
- Access to the workspace: with OpenKM, you can improve the offer of access to a shared workspace. This allows clients to work in a productive and collaborative environment without worrying about rental costs or the adequacy of the workspace.
Benefits of the implementation of the virtual office in your company
The advantages can be as varied as the initial situation of the business. However, it is possible to find improvements in common with all of them.
- Improved efficiency: Virtual office services help companies automate and digitize their administrative processes, streamlining work and reducing costs.
- Improved collaboration and coordination: Virtual offices often include collaboration tools, such as online document editing, simultaneous editing, etc. This allows you to collaborate with other team members quickly and efficiently.
- Access to advanced tools: Virtual office services often include email management tools, calendars, and task managers, which can help companies improve collaboration and productivity. Document management software has all these functionalities.
- Flexibility: By using virtual office services, companies can access their tools and resources from anywhere, which allows them to work from any location, adapting to the time zone of the area.
- Cost savings: By using virtual office services, companies can reduce the expenses associated with renting a physical workspace and purchasing hardware and software equipment.
- Security enhancement: Virtual office services often offer more advanced and up-to-date security measures to protect business information and documents, which can help improve security.
In short, virtual office services allow you to enjoy a suitable and flexible workspace and help you plan your activities efficiently, improving productivity and the perceived image of your company.