Here is an interesting thought for you. With mobile technology advancing as fast as it is and the onset of ‘the cloud’ do you still need that office to do your work in?
Now bear with me and I shall explain further. Lets take the internet first.
If your laptop / tablet / smartphone has wireless capability (and they all do) then you can access the internet from anywhere there is wifi (e.g coffee shop, own house and even MacDonalds if you so wish!!).
Now lets take your documents.
There are now products like Google Apps or Office 365 which allow you to access and work on your documents from anywhere with an internet connection. You edit your files and save them online. They also allow multiple people to collaborate on a document at the same time. All this comes secure too.
If you don’t like the idea of Google Apps or Office 365 then you could go down the online storage route with something like Dropbox. All your files are stored online and can be downloaded at any time, edited and then uploaded to the internet. Anyone with access to your Dropbox account is able to see all the documents too.
Then there is email. How many small companies actually host their own email server? Using the companies I work with as a reference (1-15 employees) not that many which means that their emails are already hosted online.
So with your documents and emails available from anywhere what is there holding you back? Meetings? These can be arranged to take place in a coffee shop in a relaxing atmosphere (I do this all the time).
Maybe you need to access a central piece of business critical software? I can see how this might become an issue but using products like Amazon Web Services (AWS) you can now host all your critical business software on a virtual server online and only pay for what you use.
What about the need to look professional and have the business address? This is very important however this can be solved by using virtual offices. You pay a company (usually on a monthly basis) for an address and telephone number in an existing building (if you’re lucky you might even get a receptionist too!!). In the Stirling area I can recommend Ceteris for this.
I totally understand that depending on the size and nature of your business the ‘No Office’ solution might not be practicable however if you are a small business with less than 5 employees (or even a sole trader) I would seriously think about it because if nothing else you would save on your office rental costs.
Has anyone already done this?
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