Top 7 Tools for Your Virtual Office Suite

virtual office toolsWorking remotely doesn’t come without it’s difficulties, and certainly no one has ever said being an entrepreneur or the owner of a start-up company is a walk-in-the-park. However, there are thousands of programs and Apps in the world today that can help you achieve your business goals no matter where you are. From collaboration programs to free website hosting and design websites there is assistance for any need you may have.

With so many different options, how are you supposed to choose? BusinesSuites has done a round-up of our personal favorite virtual office programs and Apps. The following 7 tools are must-have in your virtual office suite:


Website creation fees range from free domains with only a handful of tools available, to high-end websites created by costly designers who charge well into the thousands to hire. Realistically speaking, start-up, entrepreneurs, and small business owners don’t have thousands of dollars to invest in a website, but they still require a website that can compete for their audience’s attention. What can you do?

We suggest checking out Weebly – a website designer with a professional, unique look, for an almost unbelievably low monthly cost. With Weebly, create your website, blog, e-commerce cart all in the same spot! The drag and drop building tools make creating your website a simple process and the professionally designed templates are fully customizable to fit your tastes. Don’t worry about the mobile compatibility of your new website or blog, your website is automatically optimized to fit mobile devices – guaranteeing your customers will have the best experience on your website no matter where they are.


If you work in an industry where project management is the key to success – you will need an excellent project management system you can rely on. Whether you coordinate with a team on projects, or you work solo, you’ll want a more efficient and reliable way of organizing your tasks than a planner, email chains, and instant messaging. Basecamp is a popular project management tool that allows you to keep track of tasks within each project and assign them to different members to your team as needed.

Each project is given its own page on Basecamp – and each part of the project can be organized in tasks to be completed. When you set due-dates for each assignment, Basecamp will automatically notify you via email on the day before the assignment is due to remind you that you need to complete it. Companies in every industry can benefit from Basecamp, but industries such as event planning, marketing, and support services rely on project management programs in order to be successful.


Tired of filling out an Excel sheet daily? Do you find yourself losing track of how much time you’re giving to just one particular project? Harvest is a great time management program that ties directly into Basecamp.

Keep track of how much time you are dedicating to one project and calculate what hours you are able to bill your clients for. Harvest allows you to manage your employees’ time and help your team better their time management skills and yours. You can track your expenses on each project to help you better price your services with Harvest time tracking.


Rather than bouncing back and forth between your social media platforms, find an app that allows you to track them all at once! Hootsuite is a great app that allows you to manage all of your company’s social messages from your phone. Schedule, publish, and edit posts on Twitter, LinkedIn, Facebook, and more from one place. Monitor engagement on your posts so you can give timely responses to your fans and followers. Hootsuite is free for the first 3 social platforms.

Skype for Business

Skype has long been a preferred communication tool since mobile devices like smartphones and tablets became popular. With a growing amount of business professionals choosing to work remotely, Skype created the Skype for Business App for a fee as low as $2.00/month.

Through Skype, you can chat more conveniently with your team, your partners, and your customers. Face time your clients when they need assistance with a product or service, or conduct meetings with your team members to discuss important projects. You won’t need to worry about passing important, secured information to a team member through the Skype for Business chat, the platform guarantees enterprise-grad security and management to protect all of your important information.

Google Apps

There are tons of great email services you can use, and some people may prefer keeping a personal calendar with them rather than leaving their schedule on their computer. However, Google Apps is a great source to use when you want to coordinate your email and calendar with email invites, due dates on projects, conference call times, and contact lists. Google Apps easily integrates all of your important documents and more into one spot for you to access. Google Apps includes a drive for storing your documents and sharing them with your team, the news app allows you to stay up-to-date on important events, and the calendar app allows you to keep track of meetings, tasks, and conference calls.


Email campaigns are an important part of obtaining leads for new customers, and nurturing current customers into continuing to use your services. With MailChimp, separate your mailing lists to target a more specific audience, and track what campaigns perform better than others all on one dashboard. MailChimp even stores the results of your campaigns on the first page that appears when you log in, making it easy to re-use campaigns that have performed well. With MailChimp, you’ll even be given tips on the best time to send an email based on your past email performances, and tools to help you grow your audience.

With all of these tools and a virtual office solution, managing your start-up or working remotely for a larger company will be made more manageable. BusinesSuites has virtual office solutions available at all 30 locations nationwide. Contact us today to ask about our virtual office spaces.

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5 Questions to Ask Yourself Before Choosing a Virtual Office Space

Any investment into a new business or a growing business is an important investment. There are literally hundreds of things you need to worry about on a daily basis: Do I have the funds to pay my employees top dollar for their work? What kind of advertising should I invest in? The last thing you want to worry about is what kind of an office space you need.

Unfortunately, it’s one of the first, and one of the biggest decisions many business owners face. With so many factors weighing on your decision, choosing a full-service office space or a virtual office space can be daunting. With virtual offices becoming a popular option, many people are enjoying the benefits of having a virtual office, while some may be wishing they had chosen a different option. Before leasing virtual office space, ask yourself these questions:

1.   Do I have a dedicated location to work?virtual office - work from home

This may be an obvious question, but it’s something that isn’t evaluated close enough in most cases. Working from the couch may work for some people, but it can cause others to be unproductive. The real question you should ask yourself is:

Do I have a dedicated work location where I can productively run my business?

If you work from your local coffee shop, and that’s where you find you get the most out of your work day – great! If you’ve spent the time and money to create your perfect home office space, working from your home office is a great option. However, if you are having trouble being productive in your current work environment, you will need to either find a remote location that works best for you, or consider leasing office space.

2.   What equipment do I need to run my business

At the most basic level, you will need access to equipment and technology such as a computer, a printer, and a phone. Depending on your industry, you may require other equipment such as a fax machine, a copier, and more.

Do you currently have easy access to the equipment and technology you require to run your business? Is it more cost-effective to purchase the equipment and install it in your current work location, or should you purchase an office solution that provides the equipment for you?

3.   What kind of services do I need and what do I currently have?

If you’re looking for a more cost-effective office space solution for your business – there is no point in paying for services you already have access to for free or a lesser fee. Consolidate all of your current services you are using and calculate what it is costing you on a month-by-month basis. Then, decide what you are looking for in an office space solution. Ask questions like:

  • Do I need meeting space?
  • Do I need a professional answering service?
  • Is a mailing service beneficial to my business and brand?
  • Is a virtual office solution a greater value to myself and my business than my current services?

Don’t forget – a lot of virtual office packages can be customized. If you find yourself in need of a mailing service, but you are happy with the rest of your current services, you can get just a mailing service solution with a virtual office space.

4.   Does a virtual office solution work for my brand?

Let’s face it – a virtual office solution doesn’t necessarily work for every brand. It’s important that you consider what your audience expects your office space to look and feel like. For example, it may not be ideal for a dentist or a doctor to choose a virtual office solution. In an industry where you have to receive people into your work space on a daily basis – a virtual office space may not give you exactly what you need.

However, virtual office solutions do work for a majority of brands in different industries. Clothing designers who prefer to sell their items online rather than in a store would do well to choose a virtual office. Having a mailing service to send products and local business listings in different locations to expand their business would be an extremely helpful tool to grow their brand. Similarly, an attorney may appreciate a virtual office solution for the phone services. Having an answering service would give the attorney a professional appeal to their clientele.juggling home and work

5.   Do I plan on transitioning to a traditional office space? If so, how long until this happens?

For most businesses considering a virtual office solution – it’s just a more cost-effective step to take towards leasing an office space. If you are planning to lease an office space in the future, consider your overall business plan as it is currently. Without the virtual office services, how far into the future do you imagine you and your business will lease an office space? If it’s a step you see your brand taking within a few months, perhaps purchasing a virtual office solution now isn’t the best option.

However, if your business won’t be ready to settle into an office location for another year, a virtual office solution would be beneficial. In fact, growing your business with the help of a virtual office may help you reach your dedicated office space goal more quickly than you imagined.

If you have questions or concerns as you contemplate if a virtual office is right for you, feel free to contact a BusinesSuites office specialist. We’re here to help!

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Executive Suites vs Conventional Office: Stop Comparing Apples to Oranges

It’s likely that you have been comparing conventional office space to executive suites, and while both can satisfy your basic needs, they are very different strategies. We want to bring their differences to your attention because we know you want to make an informed decision about your office space and we’d hate for you not to have all the facts!

You know your business better than anyone else. Take the time to understand what’s included in the costs and services for each and map it back to your needs and budget. You will notice that there are major differences beyond monthly rent when comparing the details of executive office suites vs a conventional office:

executive suite vs conventional office

We encourage you to use your business goals as the foundation for your office space decision, as it’s much more than “just space.” You’ll be spending most of your waking hours in your office, and you want to choose a place that makes you feel comfortable without breaking the bank. Here are a few more details about how executive suites work and what you can expect.


Low Start-up Costs

Compared to executive office suites, conventional space requires a lot of up-front resources, including build-out expenses—rent, furniture, equipment, facility management, cleaning services—plus the time and expense of administrative employees. Executive suites do not require a build-out and are turnkey; everything is ready to go once you sign the dotted line. Your office can be customized and easily changed based on the number of employees you have, how much space you need, how often you use the conference rooms and more. However, you can bring your own furniture and hardware too. 

Shared Spaces

In an executive suites center, you have a private office, but share common spaces with other professionals. This includes the lobby, the waiting area, the kitchen and all meeting rooms. Shared space lowers your overall costs, and creates the opportunity for you to develop relationships with neighboring companies. BusinesSuites, for example, has weekly organized breakfasts where you can meet and mingle with others in the building. 

shared office space

Ongoing Office Support

Believe it or not, you get office support from a trained team when you choose executive suites (during regular business hours). That means all of the back-end office work is handled and the office continues to run even when you’re not there. Outsourcing office management to your executive suites offers an obvious strategic advantage. Instead of beginning your day working through of a list of administrative tasks to either delegate to your assistant or handle yourself, now you can get right down to business. The executive suites team springs into action when printers go offline, the printer gets jammed or the WiFi goes down. Problem solved.

You may be comfortable with a conventional office and have some questions about an executive suites option. It’s perfectly natural to be cautious about a service you’ve never used before. We invite you to tour our facilities, as many professionals don’t fully grasp the concept of executive suites until they see it first hand.

Questions to ask yourself and work through with whoever is conducting the executive suites tour:

  • Do I have predictable needs in my workplace?
  • Will I be hosting larger groups?
  • What are my plans for future growth?
  • What are the start-up costs for my top office selections?
  • What type of terms are part of the service agreement?
  • What is the parking situation?
  • Do I need any special storage arrangements?
  • Do I need any customization during my office setup—i.e. I need a phone tree.
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Need Help Choosing an Office Space Solution?

office space Choosing your first office location for your business may be just as stressful as choosing your first home. You wonder at every step if you have forgotten to inspect some detail or ask an important question. It’s not uncommon for someone to regret their first office space due to the overexcitement of getting settled in and getting straight to work. Don’t suffer through a lease on an office space you don’t love – BusinesSuites is here to help you!

Every business in every industry is different – so there really is no exact formula that can be assigned to your business that says, “Hey, this specific office location is the best option!” However, everyone should put some thought into the same specific questions you should be asking yourself when you are searching for a location, and those questions can be broken down into the location from the inside of the office building, and the location of the building itself.

Questions to Ask Yourself: Inside of the Building

Disregard all of the services and amenities you would like included with your office space. Focus instead on the physical location of your office within the building. Ask yourself the following questions:

  1. Do I have a view that would be appealing to myself and my clients/partners?
  2. Would I like an office in close proximity to the lobby? The restrooms? The reception desk?
  3. Do I need the professional appeal of a corner office space?
  4. Will my clients be able to easily locate my office within this building?

Questions to Ask Yourself: Outside of the Building

The outside appearance of your office location deserves a lot more thought than what many people may expect. It’s important that your office location is convenient for all of your needs as well as your clients’ needs. Consider the immediate vicinity surrounding the office location and ask yourself:

  1. Is this location easily accessible?
  2. How long is the commute for my clients and myself?
  3. Is there convenient and easily-accessed parking available?
  4. Are the parking areas properly lit?
  5. What security measures are available for access to this building?

After you’ve assessed the immediate surroundings of the building, take a walk around the neighborhood. Ask yourself:

  1. Are there dining locations nearby?
  2. Are there possible competitors near the office location?
  3. Are there any possible partners located in the neighborhood?
  4. Do you feel safe in this location?
  5. Would the overall location be appealing to your clients?

Don’t Do it Alone, Let BusinesSuites Help!

BusinesSuites provides full-service and virtual office solutions as well as meeting room space to business professionals, entrepreneurs, and employees of larger companies in multiple locations across the United States. We are committed to helping you with all of your office space needs, and we pride ourselves on our customer service. Let BusinesSuites help you find your perfect office location no matter where you are located! Download our free guide, “Guide to Finding the Perfect Office Space” now for more tips on finding the office space solution that works for you!

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What is a Virtual Office and Why Do I Need One?

Traditional office space isn’t always the best option for business owners and business professionals. Attorney’s beginning their own firm may not have the need for an office space, entrepreneurs may not have the funds to lease an office, and some business professionals may just find working from home a more fulfilling option. However, no matter if you are working from an office, or working from home, you will need certain tools to help you on your way to success.

Virtual offices are more than just an address and a business phone number. They are an extended source to benefit both you and your clients. When you have a virtual office solution, you have the assistance you need without losing focus on what’s important – your business.

What exactly is a Virtual Office?

To put it simply, a virtual office is more like a group of “tools” used by people who work from home or from other remote locations. These tools include things like phone services, mail services, on-demand meeting rooms, and more. They’re everything that you would need and want in a traditional, leased office space, without the actual office or the extra money.

You may be thinking: “But, I work freelance and don’t have a need for all of these extra tools,” or “Why can’t I just use my personal phone number, email, and address for all of my business needs?” To put it simply, using your personal phone number, mailing address, and home location is a possibility – but you may soon regret it.

virtual office receptionist

Why You Need a Virtual Office Solution

Having a business phone number, email, and address alone is truly beneficial to the appearance, the organization, and the security of your business information.

  • Phone number – When you choose to use a virtual office solution, you’ll receive a separate phone number for you clients, customers, and partners to contact you. You can put this number on your website, on your business card, and in your emails without worrying about someone contacting you outside of business hours and interrupt your personal life. Having a separate business phone number also guarantees that you won’t miss any calls, delete important voice mail, or forget to call a client back.
  • Mailing services – Having a business address not only gives your company a more professional appearance, it can also give you a “regional presence” that allows you to reach a broader audience and gives you more opportunities for marketing. For instance, with an address in the Pittsburgh area – even if you are located in North Carolina – you will have a local listing in the phone book and you will be listed as a local business, allowing even your website to appear higher on Google as a “local business” when being searched from Pittsburgh. Additionally, with a virtual office solution, you’re able to have your mail forwarded to a different address, or you can pick it up at any time that is convenient for you.
  • Meeting space – This space can be extremely beneficial to someone who works from home and is in search of an occasional location to conduct meetings that is both professional and conveniently located, without breaking the bank.

With a virtual office solution, you can bundle all of your services for a monthly fee, or you can choose the services you need most, without having to pay for the ones you don’t!

Where Can I Find a Virtual Office Solution?

Virtual office solutions can be found everywhere. What’s important is that you find the virtual office service that works for you. When you get virtual office services from BusinesSuites, you get more than a phone number, and a business address. You get our professional reception services, mail handling & forwarding, and technical support. You also have on-demand access to conference rooms, lounges, and team rooms on occasions where you need to conduct business in a professional office setting.

If you’re looking for a virtual office solution, contact BusinesSuites today and ask about our customizable, virtual office packages.

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