Beneath the Surface: the True Cost of Enterprise Printing

Executive Summary

While today's CIOs have their heads in the cloud, they'd do well to look first under the sea at the hidden parts of the iceberg that represent the huge and unseen costs of Enterprise printing. By working with a managed print service (MPS) provider, significant cost reductions of 20% to 30% can be achieved in the total cost of printing. 

When all printing costs are uncovered, it's often a shock to CIOs to learn that company print spend is substantial, typically representing 1%–3% of an organisation's revenue(1). For many organisations, with average IT budgets running at 4% of revenue, attacking the hidden costs of printing can be the easiest target of all for cutting IT budgets. Cost reduction efforts are being made, but they are frequently focussed on the visible hard costs, which represent a fraction of the total cost. 

Research shows that less than half of organisations routinely track hardcopy costs. In addition, less than a third track the IT helpdesk and support costs associated with hardcopy, and most do not use Web and network tools to manage hardcopy devices(2).

IDC has identified the following major benefits of MPS

  • Overall cost reductions of 20% to 30% through MPS
  • A reduction in hardware costs of 25% to 60%
  • A 30% reduction in energy consumption and 20% reduction in toner consumption by upgrading products at the end of their product life cycle
  • A 10%–15% reduction in wasted output through pull printing alone
  • A 7%–14% cost saving in print-related helpdesk calls
  • A dramatic decrease in administrative costs depending on the number of previous supplier relationships 

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