Advancements in Managed Print Services

Over the last 10 years, many new tools have come to market that offer advantages to both office equipment dealers and their customers. Office equipment dealers have worked diligently to collect and manage the data from collection tools developed by companies such as Print Fleet, PrintAudit and FMAudit. Without these key technologies, management of these various print devices would be a very manual process and it would be difficult to realize cost benefits of effectively managing print devices on the network. With tools such as FMAudit’s Local Agent, even non-networked devices can be effectively managed remotely.

The challenge for office equipment dealers and print resellers is to be profitable while providing cost savings to their clients. The benefit of the technological advances of the last few years is that office equipment dealers and print resellers can automate most of the components of the management. The key areas of automation are consumable fulfillment, service call placement, remote management of devices and printer fleet redeployment. For example, because of the level of automation available, when a print device is low on toner, an email can be sent to the customer with a link to order more toner or, depending on the contract type, toner can even be automatically shipped.

What is on the horizon?

The bottom line goal for managed print services is to decrease print production total cost of ownership while providing end-users with greater efficiencies. Gary Halperin estimates that, “if the same trends continue for the ‘paperless society,’ managed print services will continue to grow and be a bigger factor for businesses to manage their costs.” As managing smaller devices becomes more cost effective, industry experts expect that larger copiers will only find their usefulness in high volume areas such as corporate reproduction environments. Halperin continues, “The ability to effectively mange the smaller and more cost effective print devices will continue to be the direction to take for successful dealers and well serviced end-users.”