Tuesday, 8 October 2013

How to Setup a Virtual Office - My Journey

In the Winter of 2011, I decided to take the plunge into the entrepreneurial waters. I had been working in a Healthcare IT firm developing Healthcare IT products like HIMS, PHR, EHR, etc. Whilst working in a company most times you are "trained" to work on the specific area that you have been hired for, and generally the knowledge of other setups is gained  by talking to either your system administrator and she explaining the setup in a fleeting instance, as she is overwhelmed with the requests from across the organisation. Or perhaps its not even your focus area and hence you never even thought about it.

Everyone more or less is busy with their activities and working to complete their specific tasks that have been allocated and assigned to be completed "yesterday". From the comfort of having a system administrator to configure your system for you to access a simple thing as a printer is governed by a "process" and in case you have raised a ticket to the system admin. If the work has not been completed by the allocated person in 'x' number of minutes/ hours, customer satisfaction index is calculated for the relevant personnel.

From the confines of the organisation when one "startup" on their own, many things are done on a "First-time" basis. I find the experience very challenging and in some ways broadening of the horizons. You learn to do it all by yourself and from the ground up.


I went through varied experiences whilst setting up my virtual office and will highlight these in this series. I will be discussing on the specific options that presented themselves to me and finally what path I chose, i will not be detailing out the "other options" just so that this series does not get out of hand and become too elaborate and does not focus on the core, which is working very well for me. Well the sum of the parts that i plan to cover are highlighted below so that you will have an idea of steps you need to consider for yourself too. I will however, encourage you to write in your comments and views and questions regarding the options and alternatives, to which i can respond in more detail.

I dont intend this as a series only for budding, current, past entrepreneurs, but also for people working in organisations and who have the opportunity to create a project workspace or a product workspace to share information about their team's work within their organisation.

Part 1. Your online presence, your domain, Linkedin, Facebook, twitter
Part 2. Setting up your domain, using Google Apps
Part 3. Configure google apps for business
Part 4. Configure Gmail
Part 5. Configure and develop your company website, SEO and the works
Part 6. Configure Google docs
Part 7. Configure the backup NAS
Part 8. Configure CRM, Mailers and other apps with your account
Part 9. Create an electronic signature
Part 10. Configure company calender, share tasks 
Part 11. Configure shared printer using google cloud print, HP ePrint
Part 12. Your UPS
Part 13. Apps for everything
Part 14. My cost of setting up my virtual office
Part 15. Final words, and some more..

This list in itself serves as a check-list for you to get started on creating that online presence for your company, get started and keep checking back to see if there are any additional "options" that you could consider. 

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