Virtual-ly an advantage [New Straits Time (Malaysia)]
(New Straits Time (Malaysia) Via Acquire Media NewsEdge) The benefits of a virtual office are many, writes Rozana Sani
DAVID Lee (not his real name) owns a start-up company which has its beginnings in a spare bedroom in his house in Puchong, Selangor.
He develops customised business applications for the mobile platform and of late, business has been picking up with the help of customer testimonials. And it's not just small businesses. Big corporations as well as business entities from foreign shores are showing an interest in his applications.
However, Lee is worried. Working from a bedroom or a cafe is great for creativity but it does not lend a professional image to his business. When customers call, they can hear his mother cooking in the background or the incessant noise of the cafe.
And when they fax a document over to his house, he has to make sure nobody picks up the phone so as to let the fax machine run. It is worse if the client requests for a meeting, a tele-conference or a video conference.
Setting up a proper office would solve his predicaments but this requires time and money.
One solution is a virtual office package. This offers technology and corporate services that gives the businessman a commercial advantage.
"The virtual office concept is good if you are a business start- up or a freelancer with limited budget, a home-based business looking for a professional address or an international office wanting to establish a local presence. Just choose whatever is best for you and your business," says Cheng Shea Li, assistant general manager of The Nomad Offices, a local provider of serviced offices, virtual offices, meeting rooms and video conference facilities.
There are many benefits.
"Among these are mail handling services, a receptionist who answers calls in your company's name, according to your instructions, and access to our business lounge with complimentary refreshments and WiFi," says Cheng.
Other services include email notification of phone calls and 24/ 7 access to your personal voicemail and full access to a complete range of office solutions, including secretarial and IT services, hot desk and day office.
Should the entrepreneur need an office for a project, Nomad Offices has serviced office suites strategically located in major business hubs.
"Whether work involves an hour or a year, we offer a comprehensive range of office spaces from single-person workstations to conference rooms that can accommodate a dozen people. You can even adjust the size of your office space, change your tenancy agreement or furniture settings should the need arise," adds Cheng.
Tenants of Nomad Offices serviced suites instantly get a fully functional office, without the added cost of hiring support employees. It offers support and services such as reception, administrative, secretarial, company secretarial, and technology and communications. There are video-conferencing facilities, high speed broadband WiFi access, full networking connectivity, remote WebMail access capabilities, projectors, on-site IT support as well as network monitoring and troubleshooting.
In a collaboration with Fuji Xerox Asia Pacific Malaysia, The Nomad Offices recently introduced improved document management services for tenants at its premises in Pavilion Kuala Lumpur.
Prior to this, The Nomad Offices relied on a semi-auto approach for all document management account processing. In June last year, it started the Business Centre System (BCS) development to centralise its communication server to one location, as well as deploy voice mobility and unified communications.
The collaboration with Fuji Xerox will create a single interface for The Nomad Offices administrator to subscribe new tenants, and upload their information into its ApeosWare Management Services server, which is integrated into the BCS development. This enables new tenants to immediately use the facilities provided in the serviced offices and helps delivery of services as it improves operational and process efficiencies in an economical, productive way.
"Previously, much time and effort was spent on re-processing incomplete forms, causing delays to the customer and higher costs. This is less of an issue today, as the process has been re- engineered and automated. The new process is more efficient as downtime is greatly improved," says Cheng.
The project will be extended to all The Nomad Offices in Kuala Lumpur - Menara Prestige, Menara Hap Seng and the Gardens at Midvalley. There are also The Nomad Offices in Singapore, Ho Chi Minh City, Jakarta, Bangkok and Manila.
"We believe that investing in technologies is vital to enhancing the tenants' experience and to generating greater business value for them. This is in line with the company's aspirations to be up-to- date with current developments in office technology."
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