Great! You’ve decided that a virtual office is the thing for you! Now that you’ve made this decision, the next one to make is choosing the virtual office company. In major cities, there could be several companies to choose from. To help narrow your options and, ultimately, make a decision, here are five questions you should ask a virtual office company:
- Do you have other locations? – This is a critical question to ask if you are a travelling professional and would like somewhere to work at in the cities to which you travel to most often. By figuring out if your virtual office company has locations in those places, you may be able to use their services in those with little or no additional cost. This would save you the trouble of having to pay for additional offices, or finding somewhere to work at a coffee shop or a hotel business center.
- What’s your conference room policy? – Some virtual office companies may include use of the conference room in their virtual office services, while others may still charge extra by the hour. If you’re planning on using the conference room often, you may want to opt for a firm that offers the conference room as part of their services instead of as an hourly fee. Most companies, however, require that you book conference rooms ahead to time, whether or not you have to pay extra for that time.
- Do you offer a virtual assistant? – Virtual office companies also differ in how they provide a live receptionist. Some may only provide one upon request, while others come with the receptionist. In most instances, you would have to train the live receptionist in how you want your calls to be handled. However, that may not be necessary if just want someone to forward calls to you directly or to take messages when you are away.
- Would I be able to get a day office? – Typically, a virtual office only gives you mail forwarding and the professional business address. It’s a great option if you work from home. But, if you also want the option of another productive place to work, then it would be important to ask the virtual office company if you could drop in to the building for a day or for a few days a week/month. Some may have the space for it and be completely okay with you doing that. Others may ask you to book your time in advanced. Some may not allow that option for their virtual office services.
- How does your mail forwarding work? – Just about every virtual office company will have mail management services in some shape or form. With most virtual offices, mail forwarding is included. But, what if there’s a time you don’t want the mail forwarded? Who signs for the package when it comes in? Will you have to come in and pick up your mail from time to time? Those are things that need to be thought about when choosing a virtual office company. You’d hate to lose a check or an important bill because someone was careless.
There are probably many more questions that someone considering a virtual office ought to ask a virtual office company. What do you think? Did we cover all the important stuff, or did we miss something? Tell us in the comment section below!