When we started our first accounting firm back in 1973, “virtual” and “office” were two words you would never combine. Back then we were timesharing! (Some of you may not even know what that means!) Being virtual wasn’t a possibility. Why? The technology wasn’t there to make it happen. Now it is not only possible, it is a very viable option for businesses in a wide variety of industries. Even businesses that have a store front or office can have some aspect of their business that is virtual.

Our firm has been a virtual organization since the beginning. Here are the main factors we considered in making that decision and the reasons we remain totally virtual today.

MONEY – You should expect that from an accountant! But think about it. What would your bottom line look like if you eliminated rent and 80% of the office furniture and computer equipment?

WORKFORCE SATISFACTION – A happy team is a productive team. We would never have been able to attract the caliber of highly skilled accountants that we have on our team if we were asking them to show up at an office every day. Being able to work in a virtual environment either from home or somewhere else creates commitment and team loyalty.

CUSTOMER SERVICE – Would you go into the office on Saturday if a client contacted you and desperately needing some information? What if “going into the office” meant a few keystrokes on your home computer? Would your answer be different? How would your customer feel?

TIME – Wasting time is like wasting money. The average commute in the Phoenix area is 29 minutes one way. How would you like to trade that for 10 seconds? Or one minute if your house is really big! For many people the time of day when they would normally be most productive is the time that they are driving (or sitting!) on a freeway. Then factor in the time needed to get ready if no one else is going to see you..!

EXPANDABILITY – When hiring new people, one of the questions you have to answer is “Where are we going to put them?” In a virtual office, that is never a problem! You have the option to grow your team and your business as big as you want without significantly increasing your overhead. It’s just a matter of purchasing more software licenses. That’s why we are able to tell those fine folks who refer clients to us that we will always be accepting new clients. When we have more work than our current team can handle, we’ll just hire another virtual accountant.

FULL TIME OR PART TIME – Whether your office is set up to be virtual part time or full time, I encourage you to think about how it can work for your business. Let me know how it goes for you.

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