So you think you can print? Your business might already be using managed print services, but trust us, after working with hundreds of commercial clients over the years, there are always things you can do to improve your print environment.
To get your business print-ready for 2024, we’ve devised a handy print checklist. One that public and private sector organizations of all sizes can follow. These tips make sure you’re maximizing your investment in print, while keeping your print costs and volumes as low as possible. Sound good?
Get a print management solution
If you’re not already using managed print services, it’s never too late to start. Speak to your print supplier about your current print needs, and what you want in terms of cloud-compatibility, security, and functionality. They can usually recommend a good solution (please say PaperCut, please say PaperCut …). Or if you have more questions about the software or your options, you can give one of our friendly team a call . They can recommend a PaperCut solution that fits your needs.
Compare your year-on-year print usage
If you have an intelligent print management solution in place (like PaperCut MF , taking an example at random), try comparing your 2022 and 2023 print usage patterns. Offices have generally been much quieter since the pandemic, especially with the rise in hybrid work, and many of your print devices could be sitting idle. Use the detailed information provided by an intelligent print management solution to consolidate your print fleet while maximizing the efficiency of the remaining devices.
Review your print policies
Every year it’s a good idea to sit down and check if your print policies still make sense. Are more of your staff working remotely now? Are there a ton of needless documents being printed? Do you need to institute print quotas, or put a hold on color printing? Are your print permissions and security set-up, right? Again, if you don’t know the answers to these questions, our team can help you figure them out.
Audit your remote printing setup
If there’s a lot of unmanaged remote printing going on, it might be time to review your remote printing setup. By ‘unmanaged’ printing, we basically mean invisible printing. Do you know who has remote access to your printers right now? Do you know how much and how often they’re printing? Do you know what authentication checks you have in place? If you answered no to any of those questions, it’s time to upgrade your print management system. Don’t forget training either: we can give you some best-practice tips, tailored to your organization, to make sure your staff are remote printing securely.
Factor in hybrid work
Hybrid work is here to stay, and that means you need a print management solution that accommodates flexible working conditions. Most print policies are devised around a traditional centralized workplace. Organizations that don’t update their print policies to reflect new work practices are at risk from being exposed to rising print costs and volumes as well as print-related security breaches.
Automate your print workflows as much as possible
With good print management software, you should get a feel for where the bottlenecks are. You know, the points in the workflow where work tends to jam (sometimes literally, in this case). Both PaperCut NG and MF include a detailed list of server commands and Web Services API’s. These can be used to automate common operations and management tasks, saving your team time and money. Good places to start include automating backups and domain/user group syncs; automating account creation; and automating account balances and transactions.
Look for cost-saving opportunities
Depending on the organization and the industry, printing can represent a significant chunk of your annual budget. But there are dozens of ways to ease the financial pain. We’ve written whole guides on cost-cutting , but this year, try these tips for some quick wins: use your print management software to limit users’ color printing, set duplex (double-sided) printing as default, and use basic print scripting to send your jobs to the cheapest printer. Trust us, it all adds up.
Print more sustainably
Chances are good your organization has an ESG policy in place by now, maybe even some concrete sustainability targets. But if you’re still printing non-stop like it’s 2003, you’re not really living those values, are you? Again, there are lots of ways to make your printing more sustainable : use recycled paper, recycle office waste wherever you can, cut down on unnecessary print jobs, use energy-efficient multi-function printers, and source your power from renewable sources. If you need more ideas, we’ve got you covered .
Upgrade to cloud print management
Make 2024 the year you finally make the leap to cloud-native print management software, like PaperCut Hive . Chances are you’re already using the cloud for document storage anyway: now you can use it to manage your print environment. There are a few different ways to go here, depending on your organization and printing needs, but the benefits are the same across the board: printing from any device and any location, convenient print release options, and quick onboarding for newbies.