worker using a printer

Printers: The Most Overlooked Way to Cut Office Spending

worker using a printerIf you want to save money for your small business, start by looking at your printers.

Yes, your printers.

Many small businesses have too many printers or inefficient printers for their needs. As a result they end up spending a lot in maintenance costs, ink and replacement costs.

40 to 60 percent of IT help desk calls are print related.

To avoid unnecessary spending consider both the type and the number of printers you have.

Choosing the right printer for your office

You have a lot of options for office printers. Do you need laser or inkjet? Color or monochrome? Multifunction or single function?

What do those terms even mean?

Laser printers are reliable and fast. They use toner instead of ink to print. While they are more expensive upfront, toner is generally less expensive than ink. Their print quality is high for text but lower for photo printing.

Inkjet printers are slower but less expensive. They use ink, which can be costly to replace. Because they deliver high quality text and graphics, they are good all-around printers.

Both Inkjet and laser printers come in color and monochrome versions. The ink or toner replacement costs are higher for color printers. Monochrome printers are less costly, but limit you to black and white printing.

Single function printers do one thing: print. Multifunciton printers may print, scan, copy and fax. Multifunciton printers tend to be more expensive. The upside is you don’t have to buy a seperate device for each task.

Here’s a handy decision tree to help you decide which printer to buy.

a decision tree to help choose a printer

A simple equation to calculate how many printers your office needs.

Deciding how many printers you need is as important as deciding which ones you need.

With modern networking technology, you don’t need a printer at every desk. You don’t even need one in every office. In most cases, everyone on the same floor can share a single printer.

There are few exceptions of course. For privacy reasons, the HR manager or department should have a dedicated printer. The accounting department or bookkeeper may also need a dedicated printer.

In some cases, the CEO or Executive Director may need her own printer.

Everyone else can share.

Here’s a simple equation for figuring out how many printers you need.

HR + Accounting + Number of floors = Number of Printers

If the boss needs a dedicated printer you can add one to the result.

Choosing a cost effective printer option

You migh be tempted to buy the cheepest printer that meets your needs. But the sticker price isn’t the only cost of a printer. Consider ink and toner costs as well as maintenance charges.

Generally speaking, the cheaper the printer the more expensive the ink. So even though you save money up front, you’re spending more over time.

Ink for printer

Cheaper printers also tend to break more often. That means more calls to your local IT professional.

Save yourself time and money by going with a middle of the road printer with good customer reviews.


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