Employees loathe spending time learning how to print, scan or fax at the office, especially when they are facing a deadline. This inconvenience is only amplified for companies partnering with multiple printer and multifunction printer (MFP) vendors. When you consolidate these vendors, your office printer strategy can win over employees, increase productivity and improve the bottom line.
The MFP combines print, copy, scan and fax functionalities into one machine. MFPs are most commonly found in enterprise office environments, because they help improve workflow, consolidate assets and reduce costs. Over a printer’s product life cycle, the cost per page with an MFP is substantially lower than with a desktop printer. Additionally, the administrative burden of maintaining multiple print devices throughout the enterprise is lessened by the MFP — not to mention the savings in electricity costs.
The Case For One Vendor, Fewer Printers
The City of Minneapolis replaced most of its personal printers with MFPs as part of an effort to reduce costs and lower its environmental footprint.
“We also reduced a number of network printers and relocated them to a more central area,” said the IT director, the city’s director of systems, who oversaw the consolidation project. “We were trying to reduce paper consumption and printing.”
Despite some initial apprehension from employees losing their personal printers, the Minneapolis IT director said they’ve adjusted and that the administration is pleased with the reduction in expenses.
He said the city has always maintained just one printer vendor, which makes life easier for him and his department. “The vendor manages our printers,” he said. “They administer them remotely and respond proactively to any problems. It’s easy.”
Vendor Consolidation 101
Consolidating MFP vendors offers several significant benefits to your organization, including reduced administration overhead and costs, as well as an increase in supplier service and support. Working with fewer suppliers makes billing and purchasing processes much easier to manage and control. And, without the additional administration time required to deal with multiple invoices, orders and deliveries, your employees can be more productive.
By working with the ideal MFP vendor, enterprises can leverage the supplier’s market expertise and find which printer manufacturers best suit the organization. This combination of market knowledge and experience could solidify your printing strategy.
With fewer source vendors in the mix, those suppliers become part of the strategy, which can lead to improved service levels and stronger relationships. Additionally, support processes for the IT department and users are often simplified.
One more benefit not to be overlooked — especially given heightened awareness around cybersecurity — is managing your security risk. Each vendor with access to your systems represents an additional threat. By minimizing these third-party relationships, you will find that it’s easier to manage the technical resources entering your physical premises, and that your security risk declines.
Before you select a vendor, research is critical. Organizations should take the time to ensure the vendor is reputable, knowledgeable and can deliver on its promises.