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FoIP, Fax Servers, Hosted Fax... What's Hot, What's Not? Part 2


TMCnews Featured Article

January 11, 2011

FoIP, Fax Servers, Hosted Fax... What's Hot, What's Not? Part 2

By Erik Linask, Group Editorial Director

This is the second in this “What’s Hot” series in the FoIP market today. If you haven’t already, please be sure to read the first installment.

 The first part of this series discussed the variety of FoIP options available today and, more importantly, the fact that each has its strengths and should be evaluated on how those strengths will meet your business’ specific fax needs. Part 2 will continue that conversation, extending it to the beginnings of a cost analysis model for FoIP solutions.

Most organizations have standard procedures and policies for handling their various business tasks. Generally, most of these are not analyzed regularly for development opportunities, quite frequently because “that is how we have always done it.”

For instance, when handling monthly statements and invoices, the cost of postage, envelop, paper and employee handling (stuffing the envelope, applying postage, etc.), the total handling cost could easily be $1.00 per three-page document. If the same document were delivered via a FoIP service, it would cost less than $.20. If the FoIP solution were implemented into a workflow process, the savings would be even greater. Extend that over the course of a year in a fax-intensive environment and the savings could be astronomical.

Furthermore, the process efficiencies of using a FoIP server add even more to the cost benefits. In fact, most office efficiency specialists tend to be bullish on fax automation. To illustrate, let’s consider one typical scenario:

  • Your office faxes 200 documents a day;
  • You pay your average employee $20 per hour (which is very low according to statistics across the nation);
  • It takes an average of eight minutes to send a fax from start to finish;
  • Multiply that across your 200 faxes and you have used 27 man hours.

On the other hand, using a print to fax capability with a FoIP server, you have eliminated every step in the manual process after sending your document to the printer, saving you nearly 100 percent of those 27 hours per day, or about $11,340 per month (more than $136,000 per year).

Or, consider a much more practical process scenario:

There are many businesses that pride themselves on their community service and citizenship initiatives, including hiring an above average number of handicapped people, especially those that have lost the use of legs due to illness of injury, such as former service men and women. In these instances, installing a FoIP server would eliminate the need for employees to move between their desks and a fax machine altogether. 

In fact, in many instances, FoIP capabilities allow them to even work from home without any efficiency loss. By combining FoIP and contact center applications, businesses can leverage the best of IP technology to increase process efficiencies while reducing overhead costs. A subscription-based FoIP solution makes the deployment process even easier and shorter. 

Once the initial savings are being realized, business can begin automating processes, especially inbound faxes, like loan applications, medical forms, and insurance applications, which can all be handled automatically to further reduce employee involvement, freeing them to attend to other, more pressing customer issues while reducing overhead costs.

If your business depends on fax capabilities to conduct its daily business, the benefits are too great to ignore. Isn’t it time to consider a FoIP solution in your operation?

Erik Linask (News - Alert) is Group Editorial Director of TMC, which brings news and compelling feature articles, podcasts, and videos to 2,000,000 visitors each month. To see more of his articles, please visit his columnist page.

Edited by Erik Linask

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