However, there is one major aspect of mailbox services that benefits remote workers greatly. That’s the ability to view scans of physical business mail on their laptop and other devices, without the need to step into the office.
This has proved especially important during Covid, where personnel could not even visit the office.
Not only that, the increase of remote work during the pandemic has shown both company bosses and their employees that it is worthwhile. Essentially, working from home (at least some of the time) is not going away.
That being said, certain processes have had to adjust as a result. Business mail processing for remote workers is one such process. How do those that work from home keep on top of their physical correspondence?
The answer, virtual mailbox and/or digital mailroom services.
Each of these leverage our electronic devices to ensure that we can receive our mail, wherever we may be.
Let’s take a look…
Web and Mobile apps for viewing your mail
Any virtual mailbox service you signup with will have a web app so that you can view your mail remotely.
While the user interface will vary in design, the functionality will remain the same whatever service provider you use.
The most important aspects of the web app include:
- A clear viewing screen so that you can see the scanned physical mail, along with the ability to enlarge the image.
- An easy method of choosing the action that you wish to be taken place, (opening of the mail, shredding and/or recycling, forwarding to another address etc)
- An intuitive way to save and archive the scan within your inbox
- Easy search and retrieval for old mail.
- A highly secure data transfer protocol so that your account cannoy be hacked. (Anytime Mailbox uses an extremely secure 2048 bit SSL connection for example.)
- The web app should be easy to use on both your laptop and your cell phone.
Additional advantages of Mobile Apps
Where some providers really shine is that they have downloadable phone apps on both Android and IOS. This means that the user experience is tailored specifically to mobile, (rather than a web app, that is merely used within the browser of your phone).
Advantages of this dedicated approach include increased security. On Apple devices, fingerprint and facial recognition technologies can be used to ensure that only you have access to your mail.
Two-factor authorization (utilizing a text message to your phone) can also be used.
Tablet users can use mobile apps too, of course. Some of these can be viewed both portrait and landscape, providing a better user experience when managing your mail.
Other important features
A well-designed virtual mailbox app will also provide you with access to your account details and quotas.
This is especially important on paid plans that only allow for a certain amount of opened mail, scans, and other activities.
You need to know where you are with regards to your monthly quota so that you can request actions accordingly, (and even upgrade the plan if you need).
Your physical mail that is stored will also incur storage fees. These details need to be clear and transparent within your app.
Finally, the app should have inbuilt notifications so that you are alerted when new correspondence arrives.
With a phone app, this would be a push notification or even a text message. A web app should send you an email with details of the arrival, plus a notification as soon as you next log in.
This way, nothing important will go unnoticed.
How virtual mailbox service apps benefit remote workers
The answer to this is simple. Virtual mailbox apps across all devices (laptop, phone, and tablet), allow the remote worker to have easy access to their physical mail, (albeit virtually) wherever they are based.
There is no need to wait until you can visit the office before receiving an important piece of correspondence. You can view the scan as soon as it arrives at your virtual address and take appropriate steps.
If an item has to be dealt with ASAP, you are in a position to do so. And all from the comfort of your home office.
If need be you can also share the item with others, by forwarding the scanned correspondence to relevant personnel.
Essentially, you can do all that you would be able to with the physical mail if you were in the office, but remotely from your service provider dashboard.
As you can see, there are many benefits of the virtual mailbox service apps for remote workers.
With the workplace changing towards a more flexible approach, these services will become even more important.
To find out more about some of the best virtual mailbox services currently on the market, head here.
I’m a 25 year veteran of USPS. I’m retired now, but as the editor of Mailbox Master, I can’t quite remove myself from the carrier industry just yet. 🙂