LOS ANGELES, CA--(Marketwired - Jul 2, 2013) - j2 Global (NASDAQ: JCOM) reports that savvy nonprofits are looking to the cloud for ways to be more efficient while staying connected, especially with staff working from multiple locations. A March 2013 State of the Nonprofit Sector Survey by the Nonprofit Finance Fund suggests that nonprofits are changing the way they do business following years of economic hardship, as 30 percent of the respondents reported taking some action to upgrade technology to increase services or improve service efficiency in the past twelve months.1
The United States Internal Revenue Service Data Book for 2011 reports that there were more than 1.4 million nonprofit 501(c) organizations in the U.S. in 2011.2 Cloud services are increasingly being used to help transform these diverse workforces -- of all shapes and sizes -- into cohesive and efficient mobile teams. Cloud-based solutions enable productive telecommuting and connect staff in diverse locations -- all while keeping administrative and IT costs down.
Recent research suggests that many nonprofits are offering a flexible telecommuting policy to employees, as a 2013 Nonprofit Employment Trends Survey™ that included responses from 588 nonprofits nationwide indicates that more than one third of the respondents reported having a telecommuting/virtual work policy.3 Figures such as this reflect the importance of remote staff staying connected to home base. With the right cloud tools, workers are empowered to pursue fundraising and strategic planning from their offices, homes, or on-the-go. Virtual phone services like eVoice free up nonprofit workers from having to be in the office to take important calls, as callers are always routed to the right phone at the right time through one business phone number. With a virtual phone service, nonprofit employees have a virtual assistant 24/7 that never takes a vacation.
"Running a global non-profit requires me and my staff to travel on a monthly basis. A virtual phone system like eVoice breaks down communications barriers when I'm abroad," says Molly Pinney, Founder and CEO of Global Autism Project, based in New York. "With voicemail transcriptions sent to my inbox, I never miss an important call from a donor or potential partner. eVoice's 24/7 auto attendant also helps my organization remain professional and fluid -- something that is especially important for a small organization on a budget."
Click here to listen to a podcast interview with Global Autism CEO Molly Pinney.
Similarly, it's critical for nonprofit employees to have access to documents anytime, anywhere. Many times these documents contain sensitive information that legally can only be transmitted via fax. With eFax, an online fax service, nonprofit employees can quickly sign, store or fax documents from their iPhone, iPad, Android, laptop or computer -- no fax machine is required. That means even more flexibility for nonprofit employees who need it.
Here are five tips to help nonprofits stay connected to clients and colleagues while working from any location:
1. Reinforce a Professional Image When on the Go
Stay connected with key contacts while traveling or working virtually without sacrificing professionalism. A virtual phone system such as eVoice greets each caller with a recorded message and routes the call to the desired employee no matter where that employee is located. A toll-free number can be set up that routes calls to a home office, cell phone or hotel room so employees never miss that "on the go" phone call. This is particularly helpful when professionals staff fundraising or special events during "off-hours," on weekends, or even on holidays.
2. Get Big Company Features, on a DIY Budget
Customizing the call menu means nonprofits can use call forwarding to have their callers routed to the right person or department. A virtual receptionist can help screen calls so important calls are given immediate attention, while routine calls can be sent to voicemail and addressed at a more convenient time. Calls sent to voicemail are transcribed into text and delivered via SMS or an email so no calls or messages are ever missed.
3. Save a Tree Every Day
Even if you don't work at an environmentally focused nonprofit, a virtual fax service such as eFax empowers employees to be Captain Planet every day. Online fax allows offices to significantly cut paper usage, eliminating the need for bulky fax machines while saving trees daily without having to rely on reams of paper to send vital documents.
4. Sensitive Documents Stay Secure
Nonprofits often handle documents that may include sensitive client information or a patient's confidential details such as names, addresses, social security numbers, or health issues. Nonprofits also have to send contracts or fund raising documents with financial information. Using an online fax service like eFax means this information stays private and secure as it can be sent directly to the intended recipient via fax from any iOS or Android mobile device.
5. Archive Without the Paper Headache
Documents and faxes sent and received electronically can be archived online and easily accessible via date or keyword tag search. Nonprofit workers won't need to dig through giant filing cabinets in the office looking for the right paperwork; with the cloud, it's accessible from any location in just a few keystrokes.
eFax user Scott Satchell, Program Manager at GO Northwest Housing Resource Center, a nonprofit housing agency in Baltimore, MD, summed up the benefit of cloud services for non-profits: "As a nonprofit housing resource center, we're constantly exchanging huge volumes of paperwork with mortgage companies, lenders and government agencies that only accept fax. To keep things moving, it's a great resource for us that eFax confirms that our faxes have been delivered, and also saves us from printing out 150-page documents every day."
eVoice is a brand and registered trademark of j2 Global, Inc. (NASDAQ: JCOM) and is online at www.evoice.com. The eVoice small business phone system empowers businesses to stay connected to customers anytime and anywhere, without the costs of an administrative staff or traditional phone system. eVoice offers a wide selection of local or toll-free numbers that can be answered on any mobile, home, or desk phone. Features include call screening, routing, and recording. It is the only phone service of its type to offer personalized U.S.-based VIP setup and support for new accounts.
eFax is a brand and registered trademark of j2 Global, Inc. (NASDAQ: JCOM) and is online at www.efax.com. The eFax® service provides local and toll-free fax numbers around the world. Faxes are sent and received by email, online, or via mobile app without the need for a fax machine. Features include fax archiving, digitized signatures, and large file sharing. With solutions for individual users, small business, and large enterprises, eFax® is the global leader in online fax.
About j2 Global™
j2 Global, Inc. (NASDAQ: JCOM) provides Internet services through its two divisions: Business Cloud Services and Digital Media. The Business Cloud Services Division offers Internet fax, virtual phone, hosted email, email marketing, online backup, unified communications and CRM solutions. It markets its services principally under the brand names eFax®, eVoice®, FuseMail®, Campaigner®, KeepItSafe® and Onebox® and operates a messaging network spanning 49 countries on six continents. The Digital Media Division, created with j2 Global's November 2012 acquisition of Ziff Davis, Inc., offers trusted news and reviews of technology products on its web properties, which include PCMag.com, ExtremeTech.com, ComputerShopper.com, Toolbox.com and Geek.com. The Digital Media Division also operates BuyerBase®, an advanced ad-targeting platform; LogicBuy.com, a leading provider of online deals; and Ziff Davis B2B, a leading provider of research to enterprise buyers and leads to IT vendors. As of December 31, 2012, j2 Global had achieved 16 consecutive fiscal years of revenue growth. For more information about j2 Global, please visit www.j2global.com.
1 See page 9 of this report: http://nonprofitfinancefund.org/files/docs/2013/2013survey-results.pdf
2 See page 56 of this IRS report: http://www.irs.gov/pub/irs-soi/11databk.pdf
3 See page 20 of this report: http://www.nonprofithr.com/wp-content/uploads/2013/03/2013-Employment-Trends-Survey-Report.pdf