4 min read

How do I Send an Electronic Fax from Outlook?

How do I Send an Electronic Fax from Outlook?

If your organization works in the fields of healthcare, finance, or legal services, you most likely use fax in your day-to-day tasks. The reason? Compliance of course.

If you are looking for a quick way to send a fax through Outlook, there is unfortunately no five-minute-fix. In order for an email client to send an electronic fax, it must send the document through a fax server

Fax servers are hosted and managed by electronic fax providers, and in order to make use of an electronic fax service, you must have a license through the provider. Essentially, you can think of it as a fax machine that exists in the cloud. Below, you’ll find all the information you need to select an electronic fax provider, and the process of setting up the ability to send faxes through Microsoft Outlook.

We all know why fax meets compliance standards — it is infinitely more secure than email. Physically sending and receiving faxes is, however, a detriment to employee productivity, especially when employees are working remotely. 

Many of the organizations we work with have suffered the loss of precious time as employees are forced to drive to their office, send a fax, wait for a response to be sent to them, and then return to their home to continue their remote work. Depending on the time it takes to commute, this can add multiple hours of downtime to an employee’s schedule in a single day.

With electronic fax software, however, your employees can both send and receive faxes via Microsoft Outlook.


Simply put, electronic fax software is designed to integrate with your email client — and while these integrations are not universal, the most common compatible email client is Outlook. 

There are plenty of electronic fax software platforms on the market today:

  • Etherfax
  • eFax
  • Sfax
  • Fax.Plus
  • MetroFax
  • MyFax
  • And many, many more

However, not all of these solutions integrate seamlessly with Microsoft Outlook. Below, you’ll find a list of electronic fax services that completely integrate with Outlook:

  • OpenText RightFax
  • mFax
  • RingCentral MVP
  • Hello Fax

As a business that has worked with electronic fax software for over 17 years, if you plan on solely using Outlook as your electronic fax client, we recommend OpenText RightFax, produced by Xmedius. There are benefits and detriments to each software listed above, but Xmedius provides a robust system for a relatively low price.

Also, OpenText RightFax integrates perfectly with Outlook. But before we cover how to send a fax through Outlook, we first need to understand how and why electronic faxes work. Throughout the rest of this blog, we will use the backend technology of Xmedius’ OpenText RightFax as an example.

Tip: Keep in mind that XMedius’ OpenText RightFax is not the only electronic fax solution that integrates with Outlook. In fact, Microsoft supports sending particular file types (such as .xl or .docx files) through Outlook. This Microsoft specific solution, however, can only be used to send faxes, and not receive them. To learn more about Microsoft’s electronic fax solution, click here.

Cobb makes faxing simple - meet your specialists

Electronic fax software runs on a fax server. This sever acts as a hub for your faxes, integrating with Microsoft Exchange, Outlook, most models of copiers, and CRMs such as SAP and Microsoft Dynamics.

This allows every computer on your organization’s LAN (Local Access Network) to both send and receive faxes through Outlook. It also works with traditional faxes; any copier enabled with OpenText RightFax can scan hardcopy documents, and send it to the receiving end via the fax server.

This provides your organization with three major benefits: 

  1. Reduces waste — you only print what you need
  2. Never lose a fax — since all your faxes are stored on your server, it is impossible to lose them
  3. Send and receive faxes on the go — your employees will never be tied down by a fax machine again

Most importantly, OpenText RightFax completely negates the need for traditional fax lines. Rather than paying a monthly bill for your POTS (Plain Old Telephone Service) line, your organization can purchase a pre-calibrated fax server, and a software license fee to gain access to Xmedius’ services. 

POTS lines can cost your organization $50 per line — and some of our business partners own five or more POTS lines. An Xmedius server is relatively cheap. This means by purchasing Xmedius, your organization will break even much faster than you would expect.

Porting Numbers

Even with an electronic fax service, you will still need a dedicated fax line. If you already have a fax number, and would like to keep that number, you’ll need to complete the number porting process.

This is a detailed process that has the potential to cause significant delays in your electronic fax rollout, so it is always best to double-check the information you’ve sent to your new electronic fax provider.

To port a number, you’ll need to provide the following information to the new service who will host your electronic fax solution:

  1. The date the switch needs to happen
  2. The originating country of the phone number 
  3. Your company name (as it appears on your phone bill)
  4. Your billing telephone number (BTN)
  5. Your old service provider name (e.g. Verizon, At&T)
  6. Authorized person name
  7. Street address (as it appears on your phone bill)
  8. The numbers to be ported

If any of the information you provide does not match up exactly with the information on your phone bill, the number port will be delayed. For example, if your phone bill lists your address as “North Oak Street,” and you provided “N Oak St,” your port request will be denied.

Also, be aware that once the date of the switch occurs, as long as the number port has been approved, the switch will automatically take effect, and you will be unable to switch back to your old provider without starting a new contract with them. To avoid any issues, make sure your system is ready for the fax number switch before the switch date you provide. 

Tip: Some fax providers will not allow you to port your fax numbers. It is a good idea to reach out to your existing provider to see if porting is possible before you being planning your cloud-based fax system.


Now, all of this sounds complicated, but for your employees, after the fax server is set up, sending an electronic fax is as simple as sending an email.

There are two ways you can send an electronic fax through Outlook:

  1. Add a fax contact to your contact list, and then send an email to that contact
  2. Or, enter [Fax:Example_Name@11238675309] in the “To” field

*The information provided in the second option is an example.

And that’s all there is too it — really! Sending an electronic fax is truly as simple as sending an email, all while still meeting compliance requirements necessary for healthcare, financial, and legal services.

If you want to learn more about creating a compliant office, check out our blog, Can My Copier Make My Office HIPAA Compliant?

The 12 Questions You Should Ask Your Provider Before Buying a Copier

The 12 Questions You Should Ask Your Provider Before Buying a Copier

What should you know about a copier service provider before you buy a copier from them? Are there certain questions you should ask to make sure...

Read More
What is Square9?

What is Square9?

How many minutes of your day are taken up by scanning, and organizing documents? If you were to lose one of those documents, how would it affect your...

Read More
Shipping Back Your Leased Copier: Step By Step Instructions

Shipping Back Your Leased Copier: Step By Step Instructions

Are you in the process of terminating your old copier’s lease? Were you informed that it is your responsibility to ship back your old copier, and now...

Read More