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Managed Print - Reducing paper usage and cutting costs


The goal for procuring managed print might be to cut costs, but actually setting out to reduce paper usage can be both a method of cutting costs and reducing environmental impact for the company. 

Although you may not need an in-depth solution for doing this, it’s good to know some of the techniques that a company might use for reducing paper usage and therefore print costs. 


How to reduce paper usage

The actual list of paper reduction methods is a lot longer than what’s listed below and might go deeper into print policies, consumable usage and what should and shouldn’t be printed in an organisation. 

The methods listed below are a mix of strategic and tactical ways to reduce paper and link back to cost cutting as well as paper reduction. 

  1. Identifying heavy-paper processes in your company and providing solutions to optimise them.

  2. Using the Print Awareness Tool to encourage a change in attitude in your workforce through gamification.

  3. By implementing pull printing, which holds jobs at the device until a user enters a PIN or swipes a card to claim them.

  4. By adjusting print driver default settings to become more eco and budget-friendly.

  5. Using ENERGY STAR® rated devices and eco-friendly toners.

Cutting print costs

While paper and print reduction strategies might be of interest to your company, a common goal for many organisations is cost cutting. As mentioned, the paper reduction methods above can help to reduce costs, but there is a lot more that needs to be considered when searching for a way to cut print costs. 

The first thing to note is that a lot of managed print service providers will say they can reduce costs, and while this might be true, the natural reaction to this question is often: ‘By how much?’ The more the better, right?

Before being tempted to ask how much money a company can save you, be sure to take into consideration the type of cost cutting involved and the longer term savings that can be made. In essence, the cheapest service won’t necessarily save you the most amount of money over the lifetime of the contract and beyond. 

This is where an MPS provider-led assessment will allow you to truly understand the savings that can be made and where costs can be cut, both in the short term and the long-term. 

It’s all about cutting the right costs

Cutting print costs can be approached in a lot of different ways, but it’s choosing the right way to do it that will save the company money over time. 

By analysing where there is an opportunity to cut costs with a low impact on the day-to-day running of the business will lead to more valuable cost cutting over the time of the contract. 

If your main goal is to cut costs when procuring print management, make sure to outline this expectation when talking to print suppliers and ask some of the following questions:

  • What is your average cost reduction for your customers?
  • How will cost reductions be measured? How do you report on cost reduction?
  • How will you ensure costs are reduced?
  • What tools and software do you use to reduce and control costs?
  • How will you help us manage the cost of printing?
  • Please explain the cost of colour page printing and define the criteria for a colour page vs a mono page.
  • Please provide some examples of how you’ve reduced printing costs in the past.