Once you’ve decided to integrate a managed print solution at your business, the next step is finding the right solution that suits your company’s needs. Print management solutions can feature a wide range of services and capabilities, and customer satisfaction can vary greatly from one provider to the next.
Before you settle on a managed print solution, evaluate your options by comparing the different features offered by various providers. Ask the right questions of your top providers to make sure you understand the types of service you can expect—including whether those services will meet your organization’s needs.
Looking for help comparing your options? Here are five factors every business should consider.
1. Overall Cost Reduction
Cost reduction comes in many different forms. There are hard costs, including the cost of paper and toner, the purchase price of equipment, long-term maintenance needs, and energy consumption. But other “soft costs” need to be considered, including the expected lifespan of your hardware and the productivity gains created by reduced device downtime.
When evaluating print management solutions, ask providers to estimate the cost reductions your organization could be able to realize. In the early stages, you can ask for average cost savings realized by a provider’s client base. As you approach a decision, you can ask how those cost savings could improve your specific business circumstances.
2. Customized Endpoint Security
Every company relies on a unique set of endpoint hardware to manage business operations. Each of these endpoints represents a potential security vulnerability if a comprehensive security solution isn’t managing your print infrastructure.
The best print management solution for your business will be able to secure all of your print hardware, including printers in open office spaces and public access areas. This software should also manage updates and patch installs, and it should be capable of managing authorized user and user passcodes to ensure print privacy.
3. IT Burden Rate
One of the most significant benefits of outsourced print management is the reduced burden these services place on your IT department. The best print management solutions will minimize or eliminate the role of your IT professionals in addressing help tickets, maintaining devices, and responding to security concerns.
Ask prospective providers for data that reflects the reduced IT burden rate your company can hope to achieve through their service.
4. Compliance Capabilities for Your Industry
Many industries must adhere their business operations to a number of regulations and laws set up at local, state, and federal levels. If you’re a financial services or healthcare company, for example, your print management solution must be capable of ensuring consistent compliance with regulations related to health records privacy, private consumer privacy, and other laws.
Print management services ensure security and compliance of not only your print hardware, but also any print data that is subject to these regulations. If you have industry-specific needs, seek out a print management solution that has been successfully deployed at other companies within your industry.
5. Print Service Guarantees
Service guarantees are an essential component of any print management service. These service guarantees dictate the kind of support your business can expect in the event of maintenance needs, security breaches, or other support needs that may develop over the lifetime of your contract.
Print management solution providers should offer clear terms for these guarantees, as well as metrics and supporting data that proves they can uphold their end of the bargain. Don’t wait until you face a business emergency to test the capabilities of your print management service—do your homework beforehand, and you’ll be better off in the long run.
Don’t Take Print Management Decisions Lightly
In too many organizations, print management gets overlooked as a supplemental or optional service, rather than a mission-critical business solution. But the impact of printing services on your security front, regulatory compliance, and net business profits underscores the importance of making careful, well-informed decisions when choosing a print management provider.
Learn more about the benefits of managed print services—download Making the Case for Managed Print Services today.