Deciding whether or not your business should outsource some of its elements – graphic design, social media strategy – is always going to provide a lively discussion, and this is also true of printing.
Should you keep all of your printing solutions in-house, or consider an external contractor to take such matters off your hands? When we talk about outsourcing printing, what we’re referring to are managed print services, which, in simple terms, is when an external contractor (such as Brother) manages a firm’s printing needs.
In this article, we’re going to take a look at when your business should consider outsourcing printing, as well as exploring when in-house solutions are more in line with your needs.
Why do some businesses still print in-house?
Many small businesses across Australia purchase business printers for the office to use. It’s often seen as a one-off cost, but this isn’t the case. Drawbacks include a constant need to upgrade, servicing the machine in the event of a breakdown and the costs of restocking consumables.
More and more firms are looking to outsource their printing requirements.
Additionally, a purchased printer is a depreciating asset (often with a hefty initial outlay to boot) which is why more and more firms are looking to outsource their printing requirements via managed print services. This refers to when a firm will hire or lease a printer, rather than purchasing one for good from a retail store.
A move to paperless?
In these green-conscious times, offices are wary about print volumes. We all know that printing less can help the environment in a variety of different ways, but a completely paperless society is a fair way away yet. In days gone by, companies would purchase huge printers/copiers, but as we move to a more paperless ethos, the need for this technology has become less apparent. Of course, most companies still have printing requirements, but it’s less pressing to have a permanent printer in-house.
Look at this way: If your company has relatively few printing requirements across the year (but still has them) it can be difficult to justify the cost of paying for a permanent printer that won’t be used too often. Sure, if you’re printing hundreds of documents per day, that printer will soon pay for itself. However, bring that workload down, and you have an expensive piece of technology sitting there, doing not very much.
It can be difficult to justify the cost of paying for a permanent printer that won’t be used too often.
The answer to this conundrum lies within managed print services – you’re paying a far smaller amount (the fee) than you would with purchasing a printer outright, but you’ll still have all the printing solutions you need, as and when you need them.
This is especially useful in companies that are looking to downsize or reduce their print volumes – managed print services are ideal for such circumstances.
What are the benefits of outsourcing your printing needs?
Keeping costs down
The main benefit of outsourcing your printing needs is that it can keep costs down. You won’t be lumbered with a depreciating asset that you need to update every couple of years, as you’re only leasing the technology – which will usually be top of the range. All you’ll pay is the leasing fee, which will always be far less than shelling out for a new (or even second-hand) printer.
Running costs are another factor. With managed print services, running costs are significantly lower than if you were to purchase everything that a printer needs to run effectively, from basics such as toner, through to servicing the machine itself all included in the service and the recurring costs presented to you upfront.
That final point is an important one – as we all all know, printers can sometimes decide that they just don’t want to work. Paper jams, for example, are a constant source of frustration for many, but a managed print service will look after the maintenance and repairing side of things.
A managed print service looks after the maintenance and repairing side of things.
So, if your printer does run into any issues, or there are any issues that might likely occur in the future, the firm providing you with the print service would take care of everything – leaving you to focus on important matters like running your business.
Leave it to the experts
Whether you decide to go for an in-house solution or outsource your printing needs to a professional print company, getting the best results possible should always be at the front of your mind. Find out more about managed print services or contact Brother for a print assessment.