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The Fax Machine is Dead. Or Is It?

April 08, 2014

 By Mae Kowalke, TMCnet Contributor

Reports of the demise of the fax are overstated, but not entirely. The fax machine is dead, just not fax technology itself.

There is no reason to have a fax machine in the corner of the office in 2014, but there are plenty of reasons to still have a fax. One important reason is business process continuity; many businesses and their partners still have fax as part of their business processes. And while fax might not be the sexiest technology these days, there’s also no reasons to overhaul businesses processes that still work. And when it comes to partners still using fax, it often isn’t even possible to move away from fax even if it did make sense.

Moving away from the fax machine itself, on the other hand, makes a lot of sense.

Like most communications services, the cloud offers an alternative to having a dedicated fax machine in the office. It now is possible to maintain a fax presence without having to actually maintain a fax. Instead, faxes are sent through a cloud service much the way that workers email today with the likes of Gmail, and faxes also can come in via the cloud—arriving in a worker’s email inbox.

Using cloud service for fax brings a number of benefits.

First, it cuts down on maintenance and costs. By using the cloud, there’s no longer any fax machine to maintain, no toner to buy, no paper to use. Nor is there the need for a dedicated phone line for the fax. All of this adds up to reduced costs.

Not having a fax machine in the office also means added mobility. While employees can often work from the field these days thanks to email and mobile phones, the office fax is still a limiting factor. But when fax is moved to the cloud, it enables better mobility. With a cloud-based fax, workers can send and receive faxes from any place they can check their email.

There’s more convenience from using the cloud for fax, too. With faxing done in the cloud, employees no longer need to print out documents and then wait by a fax machine to send. Nor do they have to check a fax machine when waiting for incoming documents. Cloud-based fax means that faxes work much like email. And as we all know, that’s a lot more efficient.

Finally, moving fax to the cloud is good for the environment. There’s less paper and toner used. This not only cuts costs for a business, but it also is better for our world.

So not only will your employees thank you for switching away from the fax machine. So will the rest of us.

Faxing isn’t dead, but the fax machine sure is dead thanks to the cloud. 

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