One of the more annoying aspects of printers and copiers is that they always seem to run out of ink only when you really NEED to print a document. Managing ink and toner supplies for your office output devices can also be tedious.
Yet, if you’re in business, you need to be able to print, copy, and scan documents for your own use and to communicate with your customers. Rather than doing this all yourself, there’s a different way of looking at printing and copying costs: cost-per-copy.
Cost-per-copy (which is what managed print services provides) is a way to outsource your print and copier needs. The goal is to eliminate the hassle of buying your own devices, improve the quality of your output, and to save costs with a fixed rate (up to three years, depending on the length of the contract).
Other than buying paper and staples, a cost-per-copy relationship provides the service, equipment, and monitoring you need for the best quality office document output under a single contract.
- Regular maintenance and repairs (and other costs) required to keep the equipment in working order
- Delivery of toner/ink supplies
- Remote monitoring of copy and print output
- Delivery, installation (including optimal placement of equipment), and training on the equipment
- Equipment removal
- A single, monthly invoice (at least from most service providers)
You do need to keep in mind that your contract will cover a certain number of copies. Your provider will work with you to monitor and establish how many documents you’re printing and copying now and base the contract on that number – you don’t want to have the volume set too high. A good idea is to have a conversation with your provider after four to six months of service to reestablish that initial baseline at a higher or lower rate – ask your provider BEFORE you sign the contract if they’re willing to do this with you. If you exceed your monthly amount, you will incur additional charges for those copies (at a set rate you’ve already negotiated of course).
So what could this look like in reality? For $279/month, 20,400 black and white pages ($0.041 per copy/print with color pages additional at 4, 8, or 12 cents per page depending on the tier (i.e., complexity of the document). Other than paper and staples; everything else you need to output documents for your business is included.
Given that a single service call often has a minimum “show up” fee of $150, the value of a cost-per-copy program is readily evident.