What is SOHO?
SOHO is short for “small office – home office” or “single office – home office”. This refers to a business category that involves a small business operating in a small or home-type of office. Typically this business segment employs no more than 10 employees. It may be small in size in terms of workers and office space, SOHO doesn’t always mean small revenue. In fact many companies of today are part of the SOHO business segment but have big profits and revenues.
The concept of SOHO or small/home offices didn’t actually become a popular business segment until the mid-90s. As part of the global industrial revolution, most companies have a centralized form of office requiring larger office spaces and buildings. A typical example of this is in the manufacturing industry. In this type of industry, all workers converge in one facility for the manufacture of goods. And this concept carried on for decades and penetrated other industries including those of white collar worker type of industries. This resulted to huge office buildings and facilities wherein all employees go to for work.
But since the advent of technology that started in the mid-90s, many companies started to decentralize some units and office functions which led to the growing number of “smaller” type of offices spread across a particular city, state, or business district. Because of advancements in computers and the internet, and the improving technologies in mobile communications, many businesses are able to operate efficiently even if workers are not confined to one building. Some even acknowledge that worker productivity may increase if people get to work in smaller offices with a more “homey” environment. And so the concept of SOHO was born and today it has grown to become a “big” business segment. The SOHO concept has also become very popular that some office products and technologies are specifically targeted to this market segment.