Virtual Offices and the Changing Landscape of Doing Business

A recent survey found that nearly 2 out of 3 large companies in the U.S. allow occasional telecommuting.  That number is nearly double what it was in 2005. Furthermore, 33% of employers allow for regular telecommuting, a third of all large companies! These numbers show an obvious trend towards virtual offices in the United States.

Barrister Suites Traditional VS Virtual Offices

A small number of businesses are doing away with the traditional office altogether, though this is much rarer. Relying on tools such as Dropbox and Slack, these companies consist mostly of tech companies like Mozilla, Basecamp, Upworthy, and Flexjobs. The list consists of 76 companies, up 50 from last year’s 26… a huge jump! Software startup NodeSource is a 100% virtual company, with no headquarters, and employees working from all over the world. They give their employees Airbnb stipends, and meet up once a year for an annual company retreat. CEO Joe McCann admits he has not met all of his employees in person, which he says is “super weird,” but points out that office communication is not what is used to be. Many people sit at their desks with their headphones on, and communication is done mostly by an instant messaging program… if the same thing can be done from home, then why not? McCann says, “There’s this … myth that you gotta put them in the same room, but they don’t even talk to each other in person.” He continues, saying he tells new employees “Your job is not important–your life is.”

His idea for a 100% virtual company stems from his own experience working abroad in 2010. Arrangements like this rely on trust and open communication. McCann is very pleased with the way things are going, stating “It’s self-elevating because they feel this level of responsibility and autonomy in their lives–the results have been outstanding. My concern is how does that scale. I don’t know. We’re learning as we grow, but that core philosophy, that your life is the most important thing, has worked tremendously well.”

While the companies who started the trend of working partially remote – or fully remote – were tech companies, this business model now works effectively for a variety of companies.  Barrister Executive Suites is a leader in virtual offices and we offer various programs to suit your company’s needs.   Each of our virtual office programs provides all the benefits of a physical office at a fraction of the cost, whether you need an office for a week while traveling, or a conference room for a day.  Learn more about our Barrister Executive Suites Virtual Offices Programs.