Many forward-thinking companies are familiar with sustainability. As a hot-button topic across nearly every industry, it’s becoming increasingly important to reduce your carbon footprint wherever possible.

And the good news is that there are plenty of tangible ways to support your green initiatives and cut down on unnecessary waste. Here, we’ll guide you through the print functions and technologies that can improve sustainability in your print infrastructure.

Why invest in a sustainable print environment?

From changing ecological conditions to unprecedented weather patterns, the repercussions of unsustainable business practices are widespread and unmistakable. Simply put, sustainability is imperative for the health and safety of the overall planet.

But it’s also increasingly important for the survival of the modern organisation. Sustainability is a growing factor in terms of employee retention, recruitment and customer acquisition. Both customers and workers are seeking out businesses that are environmentally conscious from top to bottom.

In fact, a 2021 global survey by Simon-Kucher indicates that sustainability is becoming the expectation rather than the exception. Eighty-five per cent of consumers have shifted their shopping behaviour toward sustainable businesses, while some are even willing to pay more for greener products. Like never before, value-driven consumers and job seekers are placing environmental causes at the forefront of their decision-making process.

Potential barriers for sustainable transformation

Making this transition may seem like a daunting task for businesses, especially considering the following barriers of entry:

  • Transitioning from legacy print systems can be disruptive if not handled properly
  • Paper is still a necessary component of doing business
  • Sustainability is a long-term goal that requires dedication

With the right print solution, you can mitigate these worries and take hold of sustainability with just a few tangible and effective functions.

A greener approach to printing efficiently

Emerging print technologies are increasing productivity by leaps and bounds.

Most importantly, they’re empowering your business to take ownership of your print environment and achieve your green goals in a variety of tangible ways:

  • Pull printing: With pull printing, software holds print jobs in a secure queue until the job is confirmed on the device. Not only does this support document security, but it prevents unnecessary print jobs. Unreleased documents remain digital, meaning you reduce wasted paper, ink and toner
  • Eco mode: Eco mode reduces energy consumption without sacrificing print quality or needing to turn off the device. Likewise, sleep mode eliminates wasted energy for a period of time to conserve power until you’re ready to print
  • Toner saver: This mode automatically increases cartridge capacity for everyday prints and maximises the longevity of consumables
  • Mobile apps: The best print solutions are compatible with mobile applications that allow you to monitor your consumables on your mobile device. This visibility enables you to get a grip on wasted supplies and start optimising resources
  • Software: Cloud-based print management solutions, like PaperCut, provide real-time analytics through which you can monitor your entire print environment. From here, you can reduce costs, eliminate waste and enforce print policies and quotas from a single dashboard
  • Managed Print Services (MPS): With an MPS provider you can outsource the optimising to a third party. They’ll keep tabs on your print environment and help you identify inefficiencies and sources of waste
Secure Print capabilities ensure paper isn't wasted on mistakenly printed documents.Secure Print capabilities ensure paper isn’t wasted on mistakenly printed documents.

The sustainable benefits of paperless productivity

The reality is that paper is a staple part of most business practices, according to Quocirca research. That said, nearly half of all office workers agree that digitisation of paper processes will be an organisational imperative in 2025.

That’s why your business needs a proper scanning solution that will support your sustainability goals and empower your workforce to succeed in the coming years. By digitising paper files with effective document technologies, such as Optical Character Recognition (OCR), scan-to destinations and/or a document management system, your business can benefit from top to bottom.

With the right tools in hand, here’s what you stand to gain:

  • Reduced paper consumption: Scanning documents inherently reduces paper waste and discourages wasteful printing
  • Consumable longevity: Getting the most use out of your supplies, like ink or toner, means they won’t need to be frequently replenished or go to waste
  • Collaboration: Housing scanned documents in a secure digital solution empowers your workforce to collaborate without wasting consumables on physical copies
  • Security: Storing documents in digital storage is more secure than physical recordkeeping systems. Documents won’t need to be reprinted or copied when originals are lost or damaged due to digital backups

Tips for improving sustainability in the workplace

Sustainability is a long-term endeavour, but it’s mission-critical to the success of your business and the health of the planet. To support your green initiatives, here are a few tips and tricks that can accelerate your journey toward business sustainability:

  • Recycle what you can: When hardware and consumables are at the end of their life cycle, dispose of them properly through a recycling program, such as our partnership with Planet Ark
  • Use duplex printing: Printing on both sides of the paper inherently cuts your paper consumption in half and saves energy in the process
  • Deploy equipment from a sustainable source: Identify a print provider whose products are designed to support sustainable initiatives. Brother’s printers and multi-function devices are ENERGY STAR® certified to be on average 25% more efficient than other products
Recycling programs ensure that ink and toner cartridges don't go to waste.Recycling programs ensure that ink and toner cartridges don’t go to waste.

We understand the importance of sustainability to the modern organisation and are committed to helping you achieve your goals. Through our Managed Print Services, you gain access to green technologies, industry expertise and an abundance of solutions tailored to your specific needs.

To learn more about how we can drive sustainability in your organisation, contact us today to request a free print assessment.

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