Old traditions die hard. In business, they die much harder, especially when you consider that workers and companies have a specific way of carrying out their tasks and getting the job done. Nothing is truer than when it comes to a company or business adapting to a new technology, one that both employee and employer are not sure about using in an office environment.
A good example of this dilemma is internet faxing or using an internet fax service for the first time. Workers and companies are familiar with the traditional fax machine in the office, suggesting that any other means of sending a fax seems downright sacrilegious. People get used to a certain routine and it can be very difficult to do so.
However, the saving grace in all of this is that companies are always looking for new ways to reduce operating costs in order to make their company or business more competitive in the market. Internet faxing is cheaper, easier, and completely mobile… If businesses want to remain competitive, they will at least have to consider the benefits of using Internet faxing or email—especially if their business relies on faxing to bring in sales, contact customers, and communicate with its workers.
This relatively new technology is changing how individuals and businesses send their faxes. Simply get an online fax account with one of the major fax service providers and you can receive all your faxes through your email system, as a Tiff or PDF file. One can even “move” your old fax number over to this system without any loss of business. You can also log into your account and do all faxing from your account, and since it’s web-based, you can access it anywhere from any web-connected device. You can even send and receive multiple faxes at once and no more missed faxes due to busy signal or paper jam.
Despite all these advantages or advantages, internet faxing still has to overcome some hurdles before it can truly become acceptable in the workplace. It may be worth examining these obstacles more closely and eliminating some of the concerns associated with using an Internet fax service.
1. New technology – old traditions
As mentioned above, old traditions die hard, especially when it comes to new technology. Most people adapt pretty quickly, but there are some individuals and companies who like to preserve the old ways of doing things. However, if you ask these parties if they can run their existing business without email, you might get some bewildered looks. Most companies now use email as a daily part of doing business, and it would seem silly not to use it.
Once you fully explain that internet faxing simply takes advantage of your email system to do the faxing, it can be easy to break down old barriers. Email is fast and simple. Online faxing is fast and simple. From this point of view, the traditional fax machine is somewhat outdated and outdated. Businesses simply have to accept that there is a new, more modern way to send their faxes.
2. A hard copy, please
Another major hurdle for many people, they need to have a physical fax in hand – a paper or hard copy of their letter. How can I work with or even serve all these email faxes? It’s easy to get around this – most businesses and offices have a printer, you just have to print out the email fax to get a hard copy.
As for keeping your messages, there is nothing easier than having access to all your emails. They can be stored on your computer or in your online account, although you should note that most providers have a limit on how long your messages are stored online. With this method, you can easily find all your faxes, regardless of whether you received them yesterday or six months ago.
Privacy is another major concern, do I really want to send sensitive faxes over the Internet? In fact, sending a fax over the Internet can be completely private as you can encrypt your messages and only the intended recipient or person receives the fax. You can even get a notification that your fax has been received. It can be sent directly to the person’s email account and can only view the fax. Just compare it to the traditional way, where anyone passing the office machine might see a sensitive corporate letter or fax.
4. Trust the Internet
This obstacle is related to the above obstacle, how much do we trust the Internet? We’ve read so many horror stories of websites being hacked and vital information stolen – most people simply don’t trust doing business on the web. These barriers and concerns, are slowly being removed, as more security measures are taken and put in place.
As we have seen in online shopping, the public has come to accept doing business or conducting transactions on the web. It only takes a while before that trust is fully built and that will eventually happen as people become more familiar with the web and how things are done on the internet. Internet banking is another example where web users have come to trust the internet and how things are now.
5. Understand how Internet faxing works
Many trust issues can be overcome when individuals or businesses fully understand how this new way of faxing actually works. The best way to explain the whole process is to compare it to email. Internet fax uses your email system and an external provider or server over the Internet to handle all your messages or faxes. For a small monthly fee (averaging around $8 to $10 per month), this provider will act on your behalf to handle/process/store all of your messages.
You have your own fax number and usually 5 to 10 email addresses attached to each number, depending on the provider you choose. When you receive a fax, it is sent to each email address as a Tiff or PDF attachment – you can also log into your account online to read your fax. Any mobile device such as a smartphone, netbook, or laptop can be used as your fax machine. This is more convenient because neither you nor your workers are restricted to the office location or environment.
6. Adapt to changes
Finally, like any new way of doing something, it takes time for many individuals and companies to adjust to the changes. The same goes for using an online fax service, people will simply adjust to these changes but it will take some time. In many cases, and Internet faxing is no exception, early switchers usually reap the most rewards. These companies, companies that quickly changed their methods, now have a much faster and cheaper way to send and receive all their faxes. It can be really portable and more convenient to use and implement.
It can also make their companies more competitive in these very tough economic times where any advantage or even a small advantage can make a difference. Businesses must adapt to this new technology or new way of sending their messages or lose out. They should overcome any obstacles, real or imagined, and at least consider using an online fax service, but like all business decisions, it’s your call.