Eweek blogger Don Sears has a post up compiling some information about the quest for the completely officeless company. In it, he talks about PerkettPR, a company that has existed virtually for over 10 years, and mentions some points from a ZDNet article on the subject (full article here.) I’m more personally interested in his take on the situation, which comes later in the post:
You can create the right communication environment to do many of the daily tasks virtually, but it can be very difficult to replicate the in-person, physical workplace.
Having flexibility with commuting and saving energy are concerns for companies, but they will depend on the culture your leadership wants to promote and the needs of your business. Many managers want to have their key talent close by in an office or cubicle and it’s not something taken lightly, especially in a tighter economy. If there are sunk monthly costs for office space, you can guarantee that the chief financial officer is going to want to see people in chairs.
This ties in to some of my more recent posts about telework and telecommuting in general. While I appreciate the idea that companies will be resistant to going virtual, I don’t think it will be long before a lot more companies realize that, for the prize of outfitting a home office with essential supplies, almost any company can transfer large portions of their workforce to the digital arena.