The following is a Guest Post by Casper Manes of of GFI Software
Every day, administrators are finding out that their organization still needs to use fax technologies to get things done. Whether you are dealing with documents that still need to be hand-signed, with medical records that must comply with HIPPA, or with legacy business processes that cannot be replaced at present, venerable faxing is still a major part of many businesses. However, you should not immediately go for the fax machine. Fax software is a great way to replace aging equipment, and there’s a new breed of cloud services providing online fax service to customers that may be just the thing for your business. If you are looking to replace that ancient device and lose your analog phone lines, here are the eight key factors to consider when choosing the right online fax service for your business.
1. Lose the hardware
One of the best things about an online fax service is that it frees you from any hardware requirements. You won’t need a dedicated server, analog phone lines, or even software to install on your email server. All you need to do is subscribe to an online fax service to get started.
2. Email integration
Your customers/partners/vendors may need to use fax, but your users probably would be perfectly happy just using email. Make sure your online fax service has fax-to-email and email-to-fax capabilities, and your users will never have to leave Outlook to work with faxes.
3. Make it a printer
You want your online fax service to be as simple to integrate with your existing systems as possible. No coding, no fancy APIs; you just need it to work, now. When your online fax service can be installed as just another printer, it won’t get much easier than that. If your critical system can print, it can use an online fax service.
4. Broad device support
BYOD (Bring Your Own Device), tablets, mobile devices, legacy systems… you probably have a little bit of everything in your environment. Make sure your online fax service has the broadest support possible for the array of clients in your environment.
Look for an online fax service that can leverage things that are already in your environment. Rather than dealing with fax numbers, cover pages and speed dials, choose an online fax service that can work with contacts your users keep in Outlook. Whether those are personal contacts, or ones you add to the GAL (Global Address List) so everyone has access to them, it’s much easier for your users to pick a user from their contacts than have to look for, and then punch in, a phone number.
6. Cover pages
Cover pages can be a real challenge when half the people use their own and half the people don’t use any at all. Online fax services should be able to automatically incorporate either a company, or a departmental cover sheet as appropriate. This will keep your fax transmissions looking professional and ensure faxes get where they need to be.
And speaking of getting things where they need to be, make sure your online fax service can route faxes to the right place, whether that is a user’s mailbox or a document repository. If they can automatically turn incoming faxes into PDFs you will save a ton on paper and ink, and make your e-filing much more efficient.
Don’t overlook the importance of good reporting and auditing. Make sure your online fax service offers both, so you can see where things are going, who is using the service, and that you can show delivery of critical faxes days or even weeks after they were sent.
Seems simple enough – eight things to look at when you choose an online fax service to make sure you get everything your company needs to make faxing easy, efficient and economical. When you pick the right online fax service, you’ll be amazed at how something that seemed both archaic and painful becomes one of those services that just works!
This guest post was provided by Casper Manes on behalf of GFI Software Ltd. GFI is a software developer that provides a single source for network administrators to address their network security, content security and messaging needs. Learn more about GFI’s online fax service: https://www.faxmakeronline.com/
All product and company names herein may be trademarks of their respective owners.