Recently I had a chance to speak with Praful Shah, VP of Strategy from RingCentral, a company providing hosted communications services and he told me the last four weeks have seen business increase dramatically.
In a reaction to this increase, RingCentral surveyed its customers and found some very interesting trends. The company framed the survey as how Main Street is reacting to Wall Street - with a specific focus on the SMB.
- 75% of small businesses have been negatively impacted by the economic downturn
- 72% of small businesses are reducing overhead costs due to the economic downturn
- Nearly a quarter of small businesses are reducing overhead costs by eliminating cost of physical office space
- Only 16% of small businesses have staff centralized in one physical office
- 72% work from a home office
- 29% have staff in multiple locations across the US
- 18% identify themselves as road warriors
What are the takeaways here? Small businesses are moving away from a centralized, physical office - working from home and on the road. They are also reacting rapidly to economic conditions as evidenced by the fact that almost three quarters are cutting overhead and a surprising 23% are cutting physical office space.
What is interesting is that in an environment where companies are looking to cut costs, they realize they can save money by being more productive and efficient. And the influx of new customers coming to RingCentral just show the world that today's communications services allow unprecedented levels of productivity and efficiency and ultimately pay for themselves quite rapidly.