What Is A Virtual Office?

A virtual office is nothing less than an extension of an organization,which is often just another name for an Internet based business or an off-line business. The term was originally introduced by the Canadian telecommunications giant,Nortel,in 1993,as a way to help businesses save on travel time,expense and other costs. Nowadays,a virtual office has virtually become part of the modern flexible workspace market,which provides many companies with whatever combination of office space,services and/or infrastructure,without these companies having to bear the costs of either owning or renting a physical office space.
In this type of office arrangement,the business owner maintains the same physical address for his or her business,but maintains a separate virtual address. This address is used for a variety of purposes,such as for company website addresses,client emails,company newsletters,fax and telephone inquiries,etc. The person who has purchased the virtual address keeps a virtual mailbox address,which is typically an email address provided by the provider. In most cases,these virtual mailboxes contain a copy of the business owner’s physical address,which he or she uses for all business correspondence,and which is also used as the contact information for all business communications. The virtual mailboxes may be set up with a special software application,but most providers provide virtual addresses through an online account management system. All of this virtual email address information is usually kept within the account of the hosting company.
Virtual offices are not like other forms of office arrangements and can cost a company thousands of dollars. However,since a virtual office serves many purposes – providing a virtual address for company correspondence,and providing a virtual mailbox address – most of them are quite affordable. Many companies that own virtual offices find that they save money on both space,and staff time,because the costs of both space and employees are eliminated. For a business owner,who wants to take advantage of this type of office arrangement,virtual offices are a real advantage.