All over the world, businesses are waking up to the benefits of the virtual office. Now that pretty much anything is possible over the internet, the need for physical hubs of work and industry is steadily declining. Throughout the last five years, there has been a sharp rise in the number of companies experimenting with and embracing remote employees.
The trend has taken off in Hong Kong too. Like most global cities, space is at a premium here. It can be difficult, particularly for smaller businesses, to find high-quality offices with favourable rates and terms. However,success happens with a virtual office, because it eliminates the need to invest in long-term contracts and sprawling set up costs.
This guide to getting the most out of a virtual office will show you how to maximise the power of a flexible approach to business.
Pick a Great Location
The first (and most important) step is to find a great virtual office. There are a number of eminent facilities in central Hong Kong. They include the world-famous Two International Finance Centre and One Peking Road. Picking an address which looks fantastic on paper is recommended, but you’ve got to make sure that it offers everything you need before you allow yourself to be bowled over by a fancy address.
Some of the basics include high-speed broadband and an onsite IT team to monitor and maintain its performance. The last thing that you want is to be completing tasks online and then run into a system failure which the office provider cannot fix right away. You’ll need a mailbox (and somebody to sort your post), printing tools, and a fully stocked break room.
Get Your Team Together
We tend to think of virtual workers are lone wolves, because the thought of a whole team telecommuting is still a relatively new idea. However, more businesses are trying it every year and most really benefit from the transition. Nevertheless, remote working is better suited to smaller companies (1-10 employees).
As the manager, you will have to work hard on coordinating everybody and making sure that they’re on the right page, even if they’re not in the same room. This is made easier with the application of clear rules. If you set deadlines, they need to be met. If you ask an employee to phone in for a video call, they’ve got to do it.Discipline will help you keep the team together and feeling productive.
Have Regular MeetUps
If you are thinking about taking your outfit virtual, don’t forget the value of face to face contact, even if it is only once per month. Most virtual office facilities contain boardrooms and meeting spaces which can be booked and used whenever you need. So, make the effort to get your remote team together on a regular basis.
It will foster unity, keep employees grounded and passionate about the work, and it will give you a chance to review performance. Studies show that, contrary to popular belief, remote working doesn’t lead to reduces levels of productivity. The majority of workers are very good at regulating their own output. However,performance reviews and indicators are important.
Why 2017 Is Your Opportunity to Shine
If you have never worked with a remote or virtual team before, it can be a little intimidating at first. The temptation is always to believe that remote means loss of control. Yet, the reality is that you can monitor performance, reward achievements, deal with problems, and hit company targets just as efficiently from a virtual workspace as you can a traditional office.