Businesses in every vertical use printers, but not every operation has the internal resources to install, maintain and manage a fleet of printers. That’s where managed print services (MPS) providers can provide value to an organization. MPS providers do it all: You provide printers and necessary wiring and infrastructure, regularly maintain printers, provide repair service when needed, and manage consumables purchases and delivery. You may also include access to a support desk and printer refresh built into your MPS contract.
The Advantages of Monitoring Printers
Your managed print services vendor may enable you to monitor the status of printers remotely. You may also have the ability to perform remote maintenance, which means faster, more convenient service for your customers — and cost savings for you since you don’t have to send a technician on-site.
Remote capabilities also enable printers to send alerts to you or your vendor partner when toner or ink is low, automatically placing an order at the right time so your client doesn’t run out and experience downtime.
MPS Starts with a Needs Assessment
Many businesses are significantly out of touch with what printing costs their organizations. An infographic from MPS provider Lasers Resource states that 90 percent of North American businesses have no idea what they spend on printing annually, and companies can underestimate printing costs by as much as 40 percent. In actuality, printing may follow payroll and rent as a company’s third-highest expense.
Some of that cost is due to inefficiency. You may find that a prospect has purchased printers, scanners, and other devices over time, not necessarily standardizing all hardware from one vendor or purchasing all consumables from one supplier. That means when a problem occurs, they’re reaching out to multiple vendors, arranging for repairs from different providers, or placing orders for consumables from different suppliers.
Moreover, they probably don’t have a strategy for how to best use and share printers throughout the organization, so some printers — as well as the cost of their supplies and upkeep — may not be necessary.
The assessment you perform will define the business’ needs and determine the best, most cost-effective configuration for network printers. You can also use the needs assessment as a tool to show end users how to get the most of the printer investments they’ve already made and how, using your services, to achieve greater efficiency in the future.
Added Managed Print Services Selling Points
Additional benefits of MPS that will resonate with prospects during the sales process include:
- No in-house resources required: One of the challenges your prospects face is keeping printers operational and stocked with consumables. For businesses with no in-house IT resources, printer-related tasks can fall to office or department managers, cutting into the time they could spend on other, more productive work. MPS providers take that burden from your prospects’ employees — and manage it more proactively and efficiently.
- Great insights: Data that you can collect and analyze for your clients can provide some eye-opening insights into printing costs and usage. They can even track changes over time and make adjustments so they’re always operating most cost-effectively.
- One predictable monthly cost: A printer repair charge can blow up a budget. With MPS, your customers pay a set fee for managed print services, which includes service and support, so they won’t have to deal with the unexpected.
- Less downtime: By monitoring printers for your clients, you can perform preventive maintenance and monitor for signs of failure, which can decrease instances that require major repairs.
- Environmental sustainability: Managed print services can play an essential role in reducing the amount of electricity, consumables, and paper waste that a business generates, helping the business achieve its corporate social responsibility objectives.
- Security: You can work with your clients to establish document security protocols and enforce them with access control or other measures.
Make Sure Your Customers Understand What MPS Is and What It Can Do for Their Businesses
Businesses that have purchased printers and copiers and arranged for break-fix service may not be aware that a managed service is available that can save them time and money. Even though they will pay a fee each month or quarter for your services, efficient use of consumables, lower repair costs and decreased soft costs for in-house labor may offset it.
For a business with a high volume of printing, trying to keep up with printer maintenance, MPS may be just the solution they’re looking for.