Prior to working for the federal government, I spent approximately five (5) years employed in the private sector. A growing practice was the implementation of faxmail. The idea is simple: an individual is assigned a phone number, and when he/she receives a fax, it goes directly into his/her email inbox.
With the goal of creating a paperless work environment, the receipt of an electronic fax will create an instant savings to costs incurred from paper, toner, and general fax machine wear and tear.
This also creates an efficiency not presently obtained through the use of hard copy fax receipts. If copies of a fax need to be shared, the only current options are to make hard copies, re-fax the document, or scan and email it off. Faxmail would eliminate the necessity to conduct all of these steps since it is already in email format and ready for disbursment. It also eliminates the possibility of losing the fax because it jammed, was picked up by somebody else, or was mixed with other documents.
Many employees have been issued BlackBerry cell phones with email capability. With faxmail, the individual can now receive a fax virtually anywhere there is cell phone service. This also benefits employees who have the ability to work from home. No longer will he/she have to wait to go to the office to receive a fax.
Even if it is deemed impossible to obtain faxmail numbers for each individual employee, I feel that it's worthwhile to poll various offices, groups, etc. to see who could truly benefit. I would imagine that most individuals would embrace the idea of having a faxmail number, or at least have numbers designated for various working groups. Even if the specific working group at least has a designated faxmail number, an elected member of the group could be granted administrative rights and could forward the email as necessary.
With technology racing forward, faxmail is a simple step that will dramatically increase the efficiency in which business is conducted.