In the modern business world, few things have true staying power. The coolest technologies become yesterday’s news in a heartbeat; the most innovative solutions are quickly antiquated. For decades, fax machines were the undisputed king of business communication, and one would be hard-pressed to find an office without one.
However, this staple of office life is now losing its significance with the emergence of online fax services. And business owners seem to be liking the change. This fax homepage contains words like amazing, quick, convenient, cost-effective. So the question becomes, if you haven’t already, should your business move towards one of the online fax services or continue to rely upon the traditional, tried and true fax machine?
Is Faxing Even Still Relevant?
Make no mistake; even if the presence of the traditional fax machine is diminishing in recent years, that does not mean that faxing, as a mode of communication, is irrelevant. Because of convenience, speed, legal requirements, security and many other reasons, faxing is still a critical component of business communication, a fact which is unlikely to change anytime soon.
Faxing provides a unique combination of benefits that business owners cannot find with email, file sharing, social media, and other modern alternatives. The question is only: ‘’Which method of faxing is most effective and beneficial for modern small business?’’
The following series of questions and answers will seek to provide a solution.
Which Method Is Easier to Use?
This largely depends upon perspective. For younger employees, with little to no experience in faxing, the online fax option is almost certainly easier. Online faxing provides a format with which nearly every person under 40 is already familiar.
On the other hand, older employees who have spent decades utilizing fax machines may find this unfamiliar new process off-putting. While they will eventually come to master online faxing, it may take slightly longer than their younger counterparts. The best option for this will depend largely upon the makeup of your own team.
Which One Is More Affordable?
While some online fax services offer expensive plans, online fax generally wins this category easily. A good fax machine will come with a hefty price tag upfront. It will then continue to cost more in paper, toner and general upkeep. The annual or monthly plan cost of most online services will pale in comparison.
Which Option Is More Secure?
As a method of communication, faxing is generally more secure than most other modern methods of document sharing. Faxing utilizes phone lines, which are difficult to hack and generally not worthwhile to cybercriminals. With this being the case, the security of either method will depend largely upon the people using them.
Online faxes generally must include another method of communication (file-sharing or email) to send the documents to the servers of your online fax service. This adds another variable to the security equation, but reputable services offer encryption and enhanced security features to help protect you. Traditional faxing means you must have multiple physical copies of documents, leaving you more open to prying eyes.
Which Is Better Suited to Modern Business Techniques?
Online faxing offers additional benefits and features that are designed specifically to meet the needs of modern business. Most services allow users to share documents on-the-go, which obviously cannot be done with a fax machine. It also reduces the need to print a document before faxing. This not only removes a step, streamlining the faxing process, it also represents a significantly greener alternative to traditional faxing.
So Who Wins?
While some businesses will continue to rely on the good old’ fax machine, modern companies are clearly trending towards online faxing. Your own choice will depend upon the specific needs of your business, but online fax is likely the way of the future.