The TDSIT Blog

5 Tips to Finding a Managed Print Provider

Posted by Tim Stanley on Thu, Mar 21, 2013 @ 08:30 AM

 

5 Tips to Choosing a Managed Print ProviderManaged Print Services (MPS) companies have been around for a while. The demand has grown in the past decade as more companies began looking for ways to reign in costs as the economy slowed. The print environment is a natural place to look for cost savings, as it’s usually the last un-audited department in most businesses. MPS companies can help to reduce costs, increase productivity and control energy usage. Today more businesses are turning to MPS companies not just to save money, but also to implement sustainable strategies that offer real growth. To do this MPS companies must look at print in relation to a company’s wider IT environment and business practices.

As a company owner, you need to find an MPS company that can work to enhance your business and fit into your corporate culture. Here are five key questions to ask when interviewing MPS companies. Their answers will help you find out if they’re a good fit for your business.

1.     How will you save me money? This is really your primary goal when looking to hand your print environment over to a professional. A good MPS company will come in and audit your company. They will then be able to determine your needs and any areas that can be consolidated technology wise. The focus should be on process, protocols and procedures, as well as hardware and software consolidation. They should provide you with a clear, total cost of ownership baseline from which you can measure improvements and savings.

2.     What about other vendors in my environment? A good provider will sell you what you need, even if it is a competitors product. They will assess your needs, and supplement your existing equipment so you don’t have to throw away what you’ve already invested in.

3.     How will MPS increase my revenue and grow my business? A good MPS provider will offer ideas and strategies to not only cut your costs, but also grow your business. If they are not offering innovative ideas, and significant savings then they may not have much to offer in this department.

4.     How will you support my company as my business grows? A good MPS relationship should last over the long term. The longer you work together, the more your provider will understand your corporate culture. A good MPS provider should be able to offer change management programs to help your employees learn to adapt to new procedures and IT work processes, a web portal for ongoing tech support and online learning and/or an onsite print center with a dedicated staff.

5.     What is you’re approach to mobile technology? Business is changing. BYOD (bring your own device) is becoming a growing trend. Embracing the changes in the way employees interact with technology is a vital area critical to employee efficiency, productivity and morale. Look for a provider that can assess your IT infrastructure with an eye towards developing mobile protocols and can show you the benefits they can bring.

When interviewing MPS providers, getting satisfactory answers to these five questions can go a long way towards helping you to make a good partnering decision.  Like all important business decisions, do your due diligence. Read reports and studies of the industry. Ask plenty of questions and make sure you interview several different companies to find a good fit. The right MPS Company can help you to cut costs, increase employee productivity, and help you to grow your business. Hiring a professional is a smart business decision that can give you the freedom to focus on growing your core business. 

To find out how much your business spends on print, click here for your free print assessment

Print Assessment

Tags: managed print services, document output, multifunction printer, workflows

What is a Multifunction Printer?

Posted by Tim Stanley on Thu, Feb 21, 2013 @ 08:30 AM

what is a multi function printer

Every office deals with paper, often lots of paper; from invoicing to record keeping and everything in between. Most office environments will utilize a room full of machines to handle all of their necessary tasks. It’s not uncommon for an office to use printers, copiers, scanners, and fax machines on a daily basis. These machines take up a lot of real estate in your office and cost your company money to own and operate.

A better, more cost effective solution for many businesses may be to replace all of those machines with a multi function printer. Here are just a few of the benefits:

• Consolidation – by eliminating machines you are simplifying your work processes and reducing your inventory needs.

• Cost Savings – Considerable savings are possible through the reduction in lease expenses, supplies, maintenance, and reduced energy costs.

• Improved Workflow and Increased Employee Productivity – Faxing, scanning, printing and copying on individual machines can create bottlenecks in office workflow. By combining all of these functions into one machine it’s possible to do more in less time and with fewer steps. 

MFP Functions and Options

Most MFPs will handle black and white as well as color printing, copying and scanning out of the box. Their low price point makes them an affordable choice for most office applications. The technology has gotten much better in the past several years and the range of functions available has increased.  MFPs now offer:

• Wi-Fi Connectivity – Wi-Fi capabilities allow access to everyone in an office without the need for hardwiring into the office network.  The addition of Wi-Fi is also a plus if your company’s employees use their own smart phones or tablets in the workplace.

• Cloud Connectivity – Cloud connectivity allows users to print from anywhere, including documents stored or created on the cloud. Your mobile workforce can print orders directly from their smart phones on location shortening fulfillment time.

• Duplex Printing – Many MFPs allow for printing on both sides of the paper saving both time and supplies.

• Automatic Document Feeder – If your office scans or copies large documents this option can eliminate the need for hand feeding. Just load the document and move on to your next task while the printer does the work.

• Fax – MFPs with the fax option use the scanner to send and the printer to print incoming faxes. Remember that units with the fax option will need to be located near a phone jack.

Multi function printers are a great all in one solution for businesses of all sizes. The key is to do your due diligence. Make sure you know what functions you are looking for before you go shopping. Check the warranty and remember longer is better. Most companies will offer a standard 90-day warranty, but some offer up to three years. Choosing the right MFP can improve your workflow, reduce your expenses and increase productivity. It’s a worthwhile investment for any business.

To see how you can save up to 30% in print costs in 30 days, click here: 

cut print costs

Tags: managed print services, document output, multifunction printer, workflows