Australia 23/07/2013 – Small Australian firms are thinking outside the box to keep their overheads low and compete effectively with big business.
Many are realizing that one of their biggest overheads, their business premises, can be slashed. More and more Australian firms are leasing a virtual office from thecluster.com.au and similar firms, throughout the country.
The fact is that very few firms really need a permanent office. Studies show that even in large office complexes the occupancy rate of desks is only around 60%. People spend a surprising amount of time out on the road with customers, visiting suppliers, in meetings or on holiday or out sick.
Unsurprisingly, when business owners realize this fact they very quickly take action. After all there really is no point in paying out hundreds of dollars in rent for a space that is only used for a relatively small percentage of the time. This fact has caused many to take a breath and look at how to use their office space more effectively. Some firms have simply moved to smaller premises and introduced hot desking, which has shaved at least something off of their monthly rent bill.
Smaller firms are leading the way
However, more and more firms are realizing that they could save even more by using a virtual office instead of just opting for a smaller traditional office. Some now have their personnel work primarily from home, or on the road. They are using casual office spaces like that provided by The Cluster to facilitate this change. When staff has to be bought together under one roof, they ring up book a meeting room, which means that they are only paying for the space when they actually use it. The same is true of desk space. If the team needs to be together to work on a particular project a few offices are rented for as long as necessary. Again there is no waste. Workers seem to like working in this way, and are moreenergized when they get together. For now it is mainly smaller firms who are working in this way, but larger firms are seeing how successful they are and are adopting this approach themselves. Given that nearly 50% of Australian’s are employed by small companies, a lot of people will soon be working out of virtual or casual offices.