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How one company is saving $30m per year using Virtual Workplace Tech

Updated: Jul 2, 2020

I recently caught up with the CEO of eXp, a billion dollar real estate business, with 28000+ employees and zero office space.

eXp employs more than 28,000 people across the US, UK, Australia and Canada and operates entirely using a 3D virtual and immersive space.

I met with Glenn Sanford, CEO for eXp and Chief Strategy Office for VirBELA, inside his virtual campus and we talked about how this real estate giant has achieved exponential growth since 2009, all within this virtual world and without the need for any physical office space.

eXp estimate they save USD 30 million per year as a fully virtual company. Not only that, they were named a Best Place to Work in Glassdoor’s Employee Choice awards, voted for entirely by employees. The eXp Glassdoor profile reveals that culture and values, senior management, and compensation and benefits are among the top ranked characteristics among employees, with a noteworthy five out of five stars.

As I sat my virtual avatar down, opposite Glenn at a table in the open campus, he explained how the platform has been pivotal to their success

“We have 6-800 eXp team members meet every Friday for a town hall in our Auditorium. I’m able to keep them connected with what’s going on across the company on a weekly basis, without the need for expensive travel and venue costs”.

I later met with Adam Day, head of the UK expansion for eXp in his virtual office. Day gave me a tour of the auditorium and conference rooms within eXp world, where he had spent the week delivering training sessions for agents around the UK,

“the virtual campus has allowed us to continue hiring for the UK business, whilst maintaining a busy schedule of training events for both existing and future team members”

“We are keeping our team engaged, increasing their skills and knowledge so they are ready to emerge strong when this crisis comes to an end”.

Day went on to show me how he had customized his virtual world with an entirely branded, virtual campus (including offices for HR, Marketing and Tech support), he casually said hi to members of his team as we walked around the campus, and we then went onto explore the presentation and screen sharing capabilities that allow eXp employees to collaborate and connect in real time.

Following my conversations with Glenn and Adam, I’ve since setup my own virtual workspace and partnered with them to bring VirBELA to Europe and the Middle East. One Zebra Communication Technologies has always been focused on communication, so this is a natural next step for us.

The US government also use a customized version of the 3D virtual world for specialized military training. Stanford Graduate School of business and Singularity University use it for online education.

It’s also a great platform for major events. Like countless companies and organizers around the world, Laval Virtual had to cancel its 20,000-person event in France recently because of the pandemic. At the end of April 2020, they held the event on a virtual VirBELA campus where thousands of people used a number of auditoriums and breakout spaces for programs around VR and AR technologies.

I for one look forward to getting back out there and meeting people face to face, but I do think the world will have changed. Far more people will have overcome the pain of embracing new remote working technology, so the meetings we do have in the real world will reduce, but become more focused. We will be able to offer our teams more flexibility to work remotely, creating greater engagement and productivity.

If you would like to try VirBELA for yourself, you can get 1 month free trial access using the code: Y2slIPzg

  1. Goto the VirBELA website

  2. Select your Team Suite or Conference Room

  3. Enter the code to receive 1 month free access

In the meantime, here’s some ideas to get you thinking about the possibilities of virtual workplace technology:

  • Start your business in a virtual office

  • Expand globally without expensive office space

  • Build a virtual learning academy

  • Connect a dispersed, remote working team

  • Host events with 1000s of people

  • Build an entire virtual campus

  • Brand the layout of your virtual space

  • Configure your layout to suit your business needs

  • Hire and connect talent anywhere in the world

  • Improve engagement and productivity

The future of work is exciting, imagine what’s possible!

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