Opposite Day for Your Hardware
Mon Apr 03, 2017 | Lasers Resource
Technology has come a long way, so much so that there is beginning to be some overlap on what your office hardware can do. An “opposite day” of sorts, every day. There are some tasks that use to be computer-based that you now do with your copier and tasks that use to be copier based that are now done with your computer. Here is a list of some of our favorite office tasks that have switched hardware systems.
What Once was Computer Based
Document management has gone from large file cabinets to file folders on your computer to digital cloud-based services offsite. For the longest time in the digital age, you would create a document on your computer and share it out to where it needed to go. Often, you had to manually recreate a printed or written document to make it digital -users would email files to themselves, walk back to their computer, and then sort them into files at their desks.
Copiers today are capable of scanning documents, making them digital (and more importantly, editable), and then scanning them directly into a file folder, a cloud service (like Dropbox or SharePoint), or sending them to co-workers or groups of people, all at the push of a single button. What use to be a chore using multiple machines, and heavy use of a computer, now can be completed with a single copier and a push of one button.
While we’re on the topic of document management, your copier can also be a place that stores documents. Most copiers have two apps installed on them these days, Scan to folder and Retrieve from folder. If there is a form or document that your company or department uses often, then it is possible to save that right into the copier and print it without having to print from your desk.
Let’s say you work in HR and have a new hire that needs to be onboarded. You pass by the copier on your way to greet them at the door and print off the employee agreement form and the company handbook document right from the copier.
What Once was Copier Based
Since the technology was invented, faxing always was done on a special machine. There had to be a phone line attached and a dedicated number for the device. The fax machine has changed the way we do business, letting people send documents long distances before the internet and is still widely used today (believe it or not).
Faxing is a very secure way of sending data. There can be no ‘man in the middle’ hack since the fax is encrypted automatically and sent point to point, no switches or routers or anything else between the two machines. Faxing is still frequently used in the medical and legal industries, along with some others.
There is software that allows you to send, store, and receive faxes from your email client on your computer. It works just like an email would, but with the benefits of faxing. This service is great for doctors’ offices that get referrals by fax and have to send all information with fax.
Many things in this world are now digital. Companies are trying to go paperless and increase their sustainability efforts. Computers now can ‘print’ documents on their own without the use of a printer or copier. The print to PDF function isn’t quite as fancy as faxing from your desktop, but it has great practicality. If you are sending a document to a client long distances that needs to be signed, instead of having them print it and scan it back to you, you can now print to PDF and have them e-sign the document, all digitally.
Printing a form just to sing it, scan it, then shred, is a huge waste of paper, toner and money. There are better ways, and print to PDF is one of them.
These were our favorites for office tasks that have switched hardware. Let us know if you have any ones we didn’t cover or would like to see.
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