Why Should Your Business Switch to Virtual Fax Server?
The youngest members of the workforce might wonder if faxing is still a thing. Not only is it still widely used, but it’s also actually a crucial mean of communication across industries. But with analog fax becoming obsolete, here’s why your business should invest in a virtual fax server.
Is Faxing Still a Thing?
Contrary to popular belief, faxing is as crucial today as it was in the past for companies of any industry, as it’s one of the few official and more trusted means for communications and document sharing. But traditional and analog fax machines are becoming obsolete, forcing offices worldwide to deal with their flaws of being expensive, requiring constant maintenance, and not being scalable.
So how can businesses continue to fax and avoid these problems?
The answer is virtual fax servers.
What Are Virtual Fax Servers?
Virtual fax servers are what stands between sustainable and fast faxing and old fax machines.
The main difference between traditional and virtual fax servers is that the information travels across internet protocols instead of a fax or phone line. The user can use a simple interface to upload documents that will be converted and securely sent to the recipient’s inbox, and both parties can even keep their fax numbers. The process is just as quick as an email, and it doesn’t involve paper, toner, printers, or any costly equipment of the sort.
Moreover, virtual fax servers are a piece of the puzzle that allows companies to enable remote and hybrid working – you no longer need to be in the office to send a fax; your virtual fax server will let you do so wherever you are directly from your laptop or smartphone.
For these (and many more) reasons, the demand for virtual fax servers has been increasing non-stop for the past decade, only to be enormously accelerated by Covid-19 and the need to work from home on a permanent schedule. Still, even with this change in trends, 43 million fax machines are still operating in the United States alone, meaning that the modernisation and virtualization of enterprise fax servers is still encountering obstacles. Most likely, the main reasons are force of habit and security concerns. However, virtual fax servers can improve work life on both sides, along with bringing many more benefits.
Benefits of Virtual Fax Servers vs. Traditional Faxing
No physical appliance is required. Virtual fax servers are heavy on the word “virtual”. All you need to send and receive faxes with them is an internet connection. You can forget about fax machines, cables, stacks of paper, toner, etc. All you need is your pc and/or your smartphone and you’re ready to go.
No more paper jams. Your faxes are 100% going to arrive to the recipient’s inbox in seconds. You don’t have to worry about your – or their! – machine jamming or running out of paper or toner, resulting in delays of communications and frustration.
It saves you money. Of course, a natural consequence of taking physical appliances out of the equation and replacing them with a virtual fax server is saving money you would otherwise spend on toner, paper, electricity, and maintenance.
No more maintenance. Speaking of maintenance, a virtual fax server will not only save you the money for maintenance, but also its troubles. Not only is it frustrating to wait for someone to fix your fax machine, it might also be difficult to find different parts of it if you need to replace them due to fax machines becoming obsolete and going out of the market.
Increased security. Notoriously a delicate topic to tackle, security won’t be negatively affected by the implementation of a virtual fax server. If anything, it will benefit from it!
Virtual fax servers are protected in a way that traditional fax machines can only dream of, starting with encryption protocols all the way to the fact that no one will ever pick up the wrong fax at the fax machine anymore. And while it’s true that free virtual fax servers might be more vulnerable to attacks and that security protocols differ vendor by vendor, by choosing the right provider all faxes are delivered to the recipient’s inbox, securely stored, password-protected, and in compliance with HIPAA regulations. Plus, as opposite to emails, faxes can’t be affected by malwares and spams.
Legality-ready. Some businesses – including banking, law firms, governments, and healthcare – exchange legally binding documents internally and externally daily. Since emails are more susceptible to hacking and malwares, they’re not a suited method to exchange such documents, while a virtual fax server makes for the best mean of communication for timely, secure, and legally valid exchanges, wherever the sender and recipient are located.
Faster operations. As stated before, with virtual fax servers the process of sending faxes is no different than sending an email. It only takes a minute and it can be done any time of day, obviously resulting in faster and more timely communications.
Easy to use. Many people worry they won’t be able to use virtual fax servers interfaces right away, but that’s most certainly not true. Virtual fax servers remove the struggle of a physical appliance that might be tricky to use or might get jammed, giving the stage to an interface for which you have nothing new to learn. If you know how to send an email, you’ll know how to send a virtual fax. As easy as that.
Anywhere, anytime. As mentioned before, a huge benefit of virtual fax servers is the fact they’re not bound to a place and a time. If analog fax machines force workers to go to the office to send faxes, virtual fax servers allow you to do so anytime, anywhere, and from any device. All you need is an internet connection. This promotes and enables remote workers with a new tool to work at the best of their capacity.
Scalable. While traditional fax machines have no way to be scaled up, a virtual fax server grows as your business grows. No need to keep spending money on appliances, your virtual fax server will scale at the blink of an eye according to your needs.
Future proof. To sum up the benefits that virtual fax servers can bring to your business, only one word is needed: future-proof. They are an investment that will save you money, modernise your overall tech systems, make processes faster and ensure a positive return on investment.
How can I implement a virtual fax server?
Now knowing a bit more about the benefits of having one, you might be wondering how to implement a virtual fax server in your business.
It’s easier than you expected: you’re already in the right place. Inside of the Imagicle UCX Cloud Suite you can find Imagicle Digital Fax, our virtual fax server solution 100% SW-based that allows secure transmission of highly sensitive documents across any device.
All the previously stated benefits can be achieved through Imagicle Digital Fax.
It maximizes productivity, improves information security, and eliminates paper, toner, and appliance, and maintenance-related costs.
It ensures enterprise-class fax and high scalability.No matter your starting point or what your business is: Imagicle Digital Fax grows as you grow.
It improves security, allowing users to securely access faxes anywhere with a personal and encrypted access, fully compliant with HIPAA regulations.
It centralizes control of faxing to streamline workflows.
It’s perfect for smart workers, as it allows secure transmission of faxes from pc, smartphone, tablet, or any other device in a click.
But most of all, it’s integrated with your daily tools: with Imagicle Digital Fax, you can send and receive faxes from web interface, email, digital printer, Cisco Jabber, Webex, Finesse, Microsoft Teams, and more. In fact, Imagicle’s dedicated Digital Fax Gadgets allow you to have the same user experience from all your digital calling platforms and devices, providing electronic faxing across the entire organization. And there’s more!
Imagicle Digital Fax for Webex Calling. A market-exclusive integration.
Imagicle’s virtual fax server is fully integrated with Webex Calling to deliver a 100% Cloud-based inbound and outbound fax for both Multi-Tenant and Dedicated. The main benefits for users are:
Send and receive faxes regardless of your PSTN (including Cisco calling plans)
Complete and easy fax management directly from the Webex App
Imagicle Digital Fax provides customers with a unified experience directly inside the Webex App: fax wizard and all the faxes received/sent are available at a click thanks to the free Imagicle Digital Fax Gadget for Webex.
HIPAA: Imagicle’s virtual fax server is designed to protect your data.
Since faxes can concern anything, including sensitive data in all sectors, they definitely fall under the directives of the HIPAA and GDPR regulations.
That’s why we must take into account some precautions, such as:
Provide role-based access. With Digital Fax, data access is differently protected depending on the use you make of it: access to the web interface, for example, is only allowed for users with authentication credentials. Depending on the role, therefore, it is possible to access different types of information.
Guarantee a flexible data retention. To make data management and protection easy and fast, Digital Fax allows you to easily set the retention period of faxes to ensure that the data are kept as long as it’s necessary.
Pay attention to data processing rights. Sometimes, the data subject can ask the data controller to confirm that he’s processing his data, perhaps to request a change. Digital Fax allows you to guarantee these rights through the web interface, from which you can quickly search all incoming or outgoing faxes.
Store the data with the proper encryption and prepare for every contingency Finally, in addition to supporting High Reliability in Active-Active mode, with the optional Imagicle cluster module, Digital Fax automatically stores all incoming and outgoing fax documents in Imagicle UCX Suite Virtual machine’s hard drive as TIFF files, applying BitLocker-based data encryption to fulfill HIPAA regulations. Which, in simple terms, means that the archive of sent/received faxes is kept secure on the server/virtual machine where Digital Fax runs.
Audit all incoming and outgoing faxes. And, since we’re hopeless perfectionists, the admin will also be able to download, in CSV format, the complete audit trail of the activities performed from the list of incoming and outgoing faxes, in order to keep track of and know the date and time of any action carried out on the data. Therefore, it will be possible to know if any fax information has been deleted or exported and who carried out these operations.
If your goals for 2023 include saving money, going greener, conducting a secure business and staying on top of technology advancements, a virtual fax server is definitely what you need. It will improve your productivity, eliminate paper, toner and maintenance costs, enable work-from-anywhere environments and keep your business secure.