Over the last decade, Malaysia has grown to be one of the most promising and fertile regions for budding entrepreneurs. It has robust and reliable distribution networks and offers a gateway to a number of Southeast Asian markets. The cost of commercial real estate is very affordable here and start-up expenses, in general, are surprisingly low.
One of the reasons for this is the plethora of flexible, negotiable workspaces available to small businesses and foreign investors. Virtual offices, for example, give entrepreneurs the chance to launch new businesses on extremely tight budgets. As the corporate resources are physical space is shared with other tenants, the rates are minimal.
This guide to setting up your first virtual office in Malaysia will give you some advice on how to maximise their value.
The Range of Resources
You can head to www.servcorp.com.my/en/virtual-offices/ to check out some of the corporate features and resources available at these facilities. There are many different tools that you can use for no extra fee. High-speed broadband, mailboxes, and telephone lines are usually included as part of the access charge.
However, there are some other services (like boardroom hire) which you can choose to pay a one off fee to access. Before you reach an agreement with a virtual provider, make sure that they have the tools you need. Ask specific questions about internet speeds, security software, and the availability of administrative and secretarial support if you require it.
The Language Barrier
In Malaysia, most of the population speaks fluent English. This makes it very easy for foreign investors to recruit new employees and build up a strong presence within the market. However, all of the documentation associated with registering a business will be in Malay.
Unless you have experience with the language, it is difficult to get through the process without help. Mistakes can be expensive, so you are advised to seek counsel from a business advisor. The good news is that there are fully qualified consultants at most virtual facilities.
The Local Customs
It can be hard to settle into a brand new culture. It takes time, even for experienced entrepreneurs, to adapt to local customs and traditions. However, the faster you learn about the characteristics of the Malay people, the easier it will be to sell your brand to shoppers and investors. If you want to make it big, you’ve got to fit in.
Virtual offices are a great resource in this regard because they offer comfortable, relaxed places to observe and meet people. While they are not primarily designed for networking and collaboration, as coworking offices are, they still bring like-minded people together. Spend some time in the physical space and try to make connections with fellow entrepreneurs.
The Link to Your Home Office
Most virtual tenants don’t spend all of their time at the physical facility because the idea behind this mode of work is that it acts as a support system for more independent schedules. So, for example, you might work mainly from a home office but need a professional customer helpline or an official corporate mailbox at a registered business location.
Whatever schedule you follow, it’s really important to consider the links between your independent work and the resources at the office. Will you visit in person to collect mail and listen to phone calls or would you rather receive regular memos and updates from the virtual team? Are there any pieces of software that it’s really important for you to have access to both in and outside the office?