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The answer to this question is actually another question: Do you need your print system to be reliable?

There’s not a single piece of technology as universal as the office printer. No matter what line of work you’re in, you rely on printers for at least part of your daily tasks. Your printer (or printers) is a workhorse, often shared by multiple staff members and used for multiple purposes. Yet, despite being a central part of your day-to-day, the office printer is the one piece of hardware we all tend to forget about when it comes to upkeep and maintenance. It’s not until you run out of toner or the machine breaks down out of the blue that you pay any mind to what’s going on with your printer.

It takes a crisis for your printer to get any attention. This set-it-and-forget-it attitude we have about print technology makes keeping tabs on what else might be going on with your print environment tricky. How do you keep an eye on something you routinely forget about? More importantly, how can you be sure that you’re getting the most out of your print technology?

Enter Managed Print Services – The Outsourced Solution To Printer Woes

Like any other piece of technology, just because it’s working well doesn’t mean it couldn’t be working better. A good printer isn’t cheap, and neither are toner, paper, and replacement drums. The less often you need to purchase any of these items – or pay to have a printer repaired – the more mileage you get out of your initial investment.

That means taking steps to optimize your print environment and lower upkeep costs as much as possible. And just like you’d turn to a Managed Services Provider (MSP) to fulfill those functions for your IT infrastructure, you can now turn to an MSP to take care of your print environment in those same ways.

Managed Print Services (MPS) work much the same as any other outsourced technology solution. For a predictable monthly fee, a team of technicians will step in to monitor your print environment, ensuring the kinds of small issues that lead to downtime and lost productivity are dealt with before they can impact your day. And if there is an unexpected problem with your hardware? Service calls are part of your monthly package and come with a guarantee that your problem will be fixed ASAP and without additional charges.

Managed Print Services Are About More Than The Day-To-Day

A MPS provider begins by reviewing your print environment as a whole. This crucial first step is where you truly see the benefits of outsourcing printer care. Rather than just focusing on the printer hardware itself, a good MPS provider will look at your print network to identify tasks that can be automated, places where efficiency can be improved, as well as any potential security issues.

Of course, outdated hardware will be brought to your attention along with suggestions for important replacements, but new hardware can’t solve everything. Ironing out the kinks in your printer processes can eliminate a lot of the daily frustrations your team deals with. It can also spare your internal IT personnel from constantly dealing with printer issues instead of focusing on the projects and tasks you need them to be working on.

Your Budget Will Thank You

Letting an MPS provider overhaul your print environment can save you a surprising amount of money. There are the basic, expected savings like less wasted toner and paper due to unnecessary or duplicate print jobs, or employees using print resources for personal projects. There is the increase in productivity that stems from easier access to printers, scanners, and fax machines and a reduction in downtime. There is the ability to do more for clients both in and out of the office thanks to remote access solutions and greater efficiency.

Then there are the unexpected savings.

Newer print devices are built to consume less energy thanks to features like Sleep Mode and an expectation for hardware to meet Energy Star Certification requirements. That change alone can see a reduction in your monthly electricity bill.

Data Security Impacts Everything

Last but not least, working with a Managed Print Services provider can help you avoid major headaches like data breaches or malware infections. Your printers are connected to your network and handle data of all kinds. Most, if not all of that data, is information you need to keep all your work private and secure.

Closing potential gaps in your network is a big part of maintaining good cybersecurity and meeting the security requirements of compliance standards such as HIPAA or PCI DSS. But those safeguards should be more than just digital.

What does a printer do? It prints physical copies of documents … documents that sit in the printer tray until an employee comes to claim them. This means documents can be picked up by another employee by mistake. This opens the door for important documents to be misplaced, or even taken by someone who just happens to be in your office. When documents contain the personal information of patients or clients, this is a very serious problem. The right protocols – like Two-Factor Authentication or keycard access – can eliminate this particular risk.

So, do you need Managed Print Services?

If you need to consistently get the most out of your print environment, protect your sensitive data, and cut down on printer costs, the answer is ‘yes’.

Did you enjoy this article? Here are three more articles from our blog that you may enjoy as well:

In Search Of A Way To Make Your Printing Environment More Efficient?

7 Ways to Reduce Your Paper Usage

Just How Impactful Are Poor Document Processes?

Published on 23rd July 2018 by Shawn Maggio