Printing costs are always a tough thing for businesses to account for and predict. With the advent of mobile devices into the workplace, specifically tablets, there have been many arguments made for moving towards a true paperless environment designed to eliminate printing altogether. We’re not quite there and if we do work towards that goal, it’s undoubtedly still far away.
At some point in the workday, someone in your office will need to use a printer. What if there was way to do it better? A way that didn’t cost as much? A way that lets you know exactly how much you’re spending so you could budget more accurately? How about a way to automatically create the lowest cost scenario to print documents?
Let’s take a look at 5 easy ways that can help your office save money on printing costs.
5. Find your baseline to begin saving
How much does your workplace spend on printing related costs each year? Keep in mind, this figure should include the cost of paper, supplies, and maintenance associated with all of your devices.
It’s OK if you don’t know. In fact, it’s estimated that nearly 90% of companies are unable to report an annual figure that shows how much they’re spending on printing 1.
The first step towards saving money on printing costs is to figure out how much you’re spending.
There are many ways to find your total cost of ownership, or TCO. You could try something like our free ComDoc 360 App. This lightweight tool will give you amazing insight and analytics on your organization’s printing trends and will help you develop a strategy to implement cost saving measures.
Tip: The ComDoc 360 App and similar applications will only be able to provide analytics for printers attached to your network. If you have printers that are directly connected into workstations via USB you’ll need to install software on each PC/Mac and account for those devices individually. Considering this, it may be a good idea to investigate consolidating any locally attached printers and point those users to other devices on the network.
4. Set your printers to double-sided printing and black-and-white
Imagine being able to cut your paper supply costs in half.
An often overlooked yet simple mechanic when configuring printers on a network is setting their default settings within the Windows Control Panel.
Out of the box, most printers are configured to print single sided and in color if it has the capability to do so. By adjusting these settings you can drastically reduce the cost of printing related supplies like paper and color toner.
Refer to the image below to see where you can set Printing Defaults for each printer on your network.
Tip: It’s best practice to set your desired printing settings under both “Printing Defaults” (pictured above, located under the “Advanced” tab) and “Printing Preferences”, which can be found in the “General” tab.
3. Implement automated workflows and share files digitally when possible
We might be cheating with this one a bit, but the easiest way to save money on printing is by not printing.
It’s no secret that organizations everywhere are examining ways to create more efficient processes by creating workflow automatons. By replacing traditional paper workflows with digital counterparts not only can you create a more efficient workplace, but you’ll also be saving money by not printing the documents involved.
Tip: Our Document Management experts work with clients everyday on creating automated workplace processes. Set up some time to chat with one of them to see if your organization can benefit from introducing such solutions.
2. Introduce printing rules based on applications and processes
Solutions like Papercut and Equitrac make it simple to introduce customized printing rules to your organization. By utilizing their intuitive dashboards you can set up an array of predefined or customized printing preferences like:
- Software and application specific rules
(Example: You could force all printing from Microsoft Outlook to be in black-and-white. Did you know that printing a blue hyperlink in an email will cost the same as a full color print?)
- Re-direct high volume print requests to more cost efficient machines
(Example: Tell all print jobs in excess of 10 pages to be printed to the high volume copier.)
- Create and enforce print quotas by user or department
(Example: Assign monthly quotas with desktop alerts to create a sense of accountability)
1. Ask yourself if a Managed Print Services program is right for your workplace
Sometimes it’s best to bring in the experts, especially if already know your printing costs are creating a budget nightmare.
At ComDoc, our Managed Print Services team can work directly with you by utilizing some of the strategies above combined with additional proven solutions to create a cost efficient printing infrastructure for you organization.
By delivering a fixed cost solution, our Managed Print Services program will ensure you know exactly how much you’re spending when it comes time to create a budget.
Use the form below to reach out to us and find out how much money you can save with Managed Print Services from ComDoc.
Want to start saving money on your printing?
Our team can help you create a cost efficient printing environment while creating the opportunity for new and improved processes. Drop us a line today to chat and get started!