A Growing Expense for School Systems
The Federal Communications Commission’s (FCC) E-rate program has been providing discounts of up to 90% to make telecommunications and internet access more affordable for select schools and libraries. Many school systems rely on these discounted analog line rates, but over the past year, under new administration, there has been concern that the FCC is cutting spending, causing phone line subsidies to decrease and requiring recipients to pay higher fees. As analog phone line fees increase, many schools are looking for an alternative to their costly phone lines.
An alternative solution for school systems at risk of losing funding from the E-rate program is the transition to a cloud fax solution. The cost savings for schools are high – eliminating analog line fees, reducing consumable costs (like paper and toner), maintaining FERPA compliance, and saving time previously spent on manual workarounds.
Over time, desktop fax machines have added numerous costs to school systems’ capital expenditure from yearly analog line rates, equipment costs and even IT personnel to maintain these business processes. To make telecommunications and internet access more affordable for schools and libraries, the Federal Communications Commission’s (FCC) E-rate program provides discounts up to 90%, where larger discounts are given to schools in higher poverty and rural areas.
Schools can benefit greatly from cloud faxing due its ability to scale to an organization’s fax volume—meaning that schools only pay for usage and not a yearly rate. Considering school’s fax volumes fluctuate during student enrollment or collecting student medical records, cloud faxing is a cost effective alternative to analog lines.
Cloud faxing is an outsourced service where the vendor handles fax traffic using their servers and their fax lines over the internet, the customer’s primary cost directly relates to the number of pages sent and received rather than maintaining and managing on-site hardware.
Industry experts have calculated the cost of sending a single fax page with a cover letter, using a desktop machine, at $3.20, and receiving a fax at $1.43. If an organization sends and receives 500 faxes a month, these costs add up to over $27,000 a year and can explode with additional fax volume.
Cost to Send a Fax with a Desktop Fax Machine
- No analog line fees
- No paper and tone cosys
- No IT involvement with hardware maintenance
- Expense the service instead of making a capital investment in hardware
Moving to cloud fax eliminates manual processes that interfere with efficiency and productivity of workers. When sending a fax with desktop machines, employees need to walk to the printer, load the fax, enter the number and wait. With cloud fax, employees simply fax from their desktop using either a web-interface or an email client.
- Fax from anywhere using a computer, tablet or phone
- Track fax activity—view when a fax was sent, received, if there was a failure and what type, and number of retries
- Eliminate manual processes that decrease employee productivity
- Integrates with email clients including Outlook or Gmail
With desktop fax machines there is a greater risk of not meeting FERPA and HIPAA compliance regulations due to losing and misplacing confidential student records. After a paper fax is received, it must be re-filed or disposed of, again creating more risk of compromise of private data.
- Electronic format decreases risk of human error
- Eliminate risk of compromising student financial and PHI records
- Achieve regulatory compliance for HIPAA and FERPA
Biscom Cloud Fax Solution
Biscom’s cloud fax solution can help school systems decrease their capital expenditure and make faxing as simple as sending an email. Biscom provides a high performance enterprise solution that scales your fax volume. Our efax solution includes all the integration, control, security, and monitoring that you would expect from an enterprise solution selected by industry leaders. Learn more about our fax capabilities here.