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5 Reasons Why Businesses Need a Print Audit

Businesses are beginning to expect more than just photocopiers from their photocopier supplier, they often now look for consultancy, evaluation and support. An evaluation of a business' print strategy by carrying out a print audit and making the necessary changes can cut costs, but is the impact of ­a new print strategy substantial enough to warrant calling in the experts

1. Save money

Cost is often the driving force behind many business decisions. Examining all the printers and photocopiers in a business allows any weaknesses, such as inefficient and high cost devices, to be targeted and an improved print strategy implemented. This can also make it easier for a business to run all printers, photocopiers, multifu­nctional devices and scanners as one fleet, keeping only the most efficient photocopiers and printers running and allowing tighter controls to be implemented on all printing. It has recently been estimated that the Texas government will save $33 million by limiting the choice of photocopiers to 11 models, standardising photocopying and printing across state agencies and negotiating a fixed cost for all the devices (http://www.window.state.tx.us/txsmartbuy/sourcing?info.html).

2. Environmental Factors

Examining a business's print strategy helps pinpoint any printers or photocopiers that are the least energy efficient or use excessive and wasteful amounts of toner. These devices can then either be replaced by more energy and toner efficient printers or photocopiers or the printing can be rerouted to existing efficient devices that are not being utilised to their full extent. A solid print strategy can also help to reduce unnecessary prints by targeting areas or employees carrying out the most printing and implementing software to track prints, identify users and set up authorisation for large print jobs.

3. Increase marketing success

Businesses taking control of their printing and adopting a strict print strategy can limit the amount of colour printing to only the most important documents. Reducing unnecessary printing and limiting draft copies of documents to black and white only could allow businesses to introduce more colour to important marketing documents. It has been claimed that use of colour can increase ease of reading by 80%, reduce errors by 80% and increase brand retention by 70% (http://www.canon.co.uk/About?Us/Press?Centre/Press?Resources/Feature?Stories/Guide?to?colour?printing?in?the?office.asp).

4. Save time

Ensuring that all printers and photocopiers are running efficiently limits the time spent waiting for output and reduces downtime as only the most reliable devices are used. A managed print service could also help businesses to implement an appropriate document management system decreasing the amount of time employees spend searching for documents, streamlining document workflow.

5. Improve Security

Introducing a uniform print strategy across all printers and photocopiers allows the implementation of security measures for all devices, helping to make sure documents are kept safe and confidential. These can range from hard disk protection, to blocking of certain employees to password and fingerprint recognition. Having uniform measures in place means that security can be monitored and makes sure that all devices have the appropriate amount of security necessary.

Today, businesses do not just expect to acquire a photocopier from office equipment suppliers but look for consultancy, on going support and a complete print solution. Good photocopier suppliers should be equipped to deal with this change in the market and able to offer a print audit and make the necessary suggestions to help businesses create an efficient print strategy, significantly reduce print costs and streamline business workflow.