Define a Virtual Office

A "virtual office" was a company that provided contractors or sole proprietors a receptionist, office facilities and a conference room that did not have their own locations. They paid a monthly service fee to use the phone and mailing address for their own needs and met with customers in the conference room to present a professional appearance. Digital offices today mean something different.


A virtual office (or virtual corporation) refers to an organization that may not have a fixed location but acts as a network for providing consumers with goods and services. It depends on the Internet to share information, meetings video conferencing, and cell phones so staff can keep in touch. Employees of the workplace may be working at home, or in different cities and countries.

Advantages and Disadvantages of a Virtual Office

A virtual office's appeal to the consumers is double. Secondly, a virtual office's monthly cost is far less than a traditional office's. After all, it doesn't have any of the repair and maintenance costs, nor does it require staffing. A virtual office can also be protected via a month-to-month contract, so if a user's business shifts there is greater flexibility (no waiting for a lease to expire or bear the expense of a broken lease).

The cost of using a virtual office can be as low as $50 for membership fees, and $250 a month or more for a monthly basic service contract. The more things it puts in, the more it will be costly.

Second, a virtual office may provide a mailing address, answering by telephone and videoconferencing services. So a small business can seem larger than it is. It can also provide users with a physical address (or multiple addresses) to contact clients. Sometimes the address will lend a prestige aura to a user of a virtual office as if the address is a well-known location or street. The same impact can be had by a qualified phone answering service.

Some of the services offered by a virtual office system include the use of pre-planning. For example, many packages come with restricted use of conference rooms or limited facilities such as teleconferencing and videoconference. Digital offices could also have limited night and weekend access. Users may find the lack of versatility restricting and uncomfortable. There is also the potential for disruptions that come with working from home and thus some workers may not be as successful when operating in a virtual office environment.

Emerging Trends

Coworking is a related phenomenon in flexible workspaces that emphasizes users who communicate with each other in order to create a meta-office culture without working for the same business. Coworking facilities provide serviced workspaces, similar to virtual offices, and customers can use these as needed.

Virtual reality technology is another phenomenon that is likely to affect virtual offices very soon. Virtual reality systems have the ability to create office spaces within the virtual world that are physical spaces where people can interact and work side-by-side, similar to how workers can telecommute today.

Victory Workspace Walnut Creek Coworking Space
By JeffreymendelImage Courtesy of Jeffrey Nash - Own work, CC BY 3.0, Link

Are You Ready to Find Your New Virtual Address, Mailbox or Office?

We have just what you are looking for! Victory Workspace serves professionals in the Walnut Creek, California area.  At Victory Workspace, we offer a variety of Virtual Office packages designed to give you all the benefits of a traditional office at a fraction of the cost. What does it mean to have a virtual office? What would it look to have one? How would it change your business and your day-to-day work life? We are the leaders in virtual workspaces in Walnut Creek because we have an innovative and comprehensive approach to non-traditional workspaces. To learn more, set up your free tour or inquire about which one of services might be right for you, reach out to one of our amazing Community Guides at Victory Workspace for more information.