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How To Decrease Printing Expenses


Tough economic times have forced business owners to explore all cost cutting measures. They have reduced their workforce and unnecessary expenditure among many others, yet they are still looking for more cost cutting avenues. Printing cost is one of the most overlooked expenses by businesses everywhere. Recent studies show that these costs typically run between 1% and 3% of the company’s revenue. The following ideas can help you and your firm reduce your printing expenditures.

1. Acquire high quality printers – The latest models of printers are optimized for ink and paper saving. They are more expensive than earlier, less efficient models but in the long term the cost savings they grant you will help you to recoup your expenditure. Laser printers for example are more expensive than inkjet varieties but save you lots of money. Multi-functioning printers (MFPs) that perform several functions at the same time not only save on costs but also increase productivity. Old machines require frequent maintenance runs and this eats into a companies revenues.

2. Restrictions on printing -It is common for employees to print documents that are not useful to the business (such as personal documents and extra unnecessary pages). This amounts to wastage. To curb this, you should establish restrictions that give you more control over what is printed or impart responsibility on your employees for wastage. There are machines that require authorization before printing through biometrics, PIN authorization and swipe cards. Acquiring these can help you control the volume and quality of print so as to minimize ink, electricity and paper usage.

3. Minimize color printing unless absolutely necessary. Color cartridges are much more expensive than black cartridges. Additionally, color printing takes longer and consumes more power than black and white printing. It is therefore advisable that you stick to black and white unless you really need to impress someone. You could set all printers to default monochrome mode to force users to use color mode only when completely necessary.

4. Multi-page and duplex printing – it is usually possible to fit multiple pages onto one sheet of paper without affecting the legibility of the documents much. This cuts back on your consumption of ink, paper and time. You can further encourage the use of duplex printing which involves printing on both sides of the paper. This can reduce paper consumption by as much as 50%.

5. Print only the text that you need – some employees will print 10 pages of text while only a small selection of the text is required. Almost every printer application has a feature that allows you to print only a selection of the text that you need rather than having to discard multiple pages after the print job. This is especially handy when you want to print a document from a webpage or long spreadsheet or word document.

6. Reduce unnecessary multiple printing -when there are delays in printing a document, most of us are tempted to push the print button again which usually results in the document being printed multiple times. It is a good practice to check on the status of the document before retrying as the document may just be waiting behind other printing jobs. Some printer systems allow users to delete queued jobs from a printer. This feature can go a long way in curbing wastage.

7. Use of Managed printing services – this involves liaising with your printer manufacturers. They assess your business environment, printing practices and expenses and formulate a plan to optimize your printing functions for maximum productivity and cost cutting while also providing maintenance services.

8. Go paperless – reducing your firm’s dependence on paper can help to reduce costs. Encourage the use of email to transfer documents wherever possible. Additionally the use of recycled paper and cartridges and paper will help reduce expenditure without affecting print quality.

This list isn’t exhaustive and there are other interesting ideas on how to cut on your printing costs. You can find some of these by following these links.