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The Beginner's Guide to Printer Fleet Management Solutions

Mark Flesch
02/09/2021
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What do you look for when buying new office printers? You probably look for things like copy speed, image resolution or scanning capabilities.

Those are all important things to consider. But what if I told you it’s also important to think about things like continuous process improvement and increasing productivity? Those might sound like hard things to quantify, but there is a way.

Here’s how you can get the printers you need while managing them for maximum effectiveness, security and productivity. It’s called fleet management, and it starts with one simple step.

Step One: Track Everything

A fleet management solution is when a service provider uses software and other tools to manage your printers and multifunction devices (MFD). By analyzing your print usage, print devices can be strategically placed throughout your locations with the goal of increased productivity and efficiency for your staff and customers.

The process begins the day you install a print management solution like PaperCut or uniFLOW to monitor your printers. You can get even more useful features if you install a login control, like a card swipe/PIN/username or password protection. If you have a large printer fleet, we recommend access be controlled. This makes it possible to track printer usage throughout your company and report to the end users' cost center. This data will provide the best possible services for all users and help increase productivity and efficiency based on detailed analytics.

Step Two: Information is Power

The goal of Fleet Management or Managed Print Services (MPS) is to reduce. That includes reducing total costs, reducing the number of devices you have, reducing the number of manufacturers and models in use, reducing IT time spent dealing with devices and to reduce the number of vendors you work with. 

For example, with the FMAudit application, you can discover, inventory and assess all of the print devices connected to a network. The software captures and stores information about networked printers such as IP Address, MAC Address and Current Meter Readings for the device. This enables IT Administrators to know exactly what resources are available and their status. With this information you can:

  • Set goals and objectives that you can measure to ensure success in your new MPS program.
  • Receive automatic supply/maintenance/service alerts for networked devices.
  • Retire and replace older machines based on volume data and service history rather than user opinion.
  • Provide a regular report card on your printing environment and progress of MPS implementation.
  • Meet corporate social responsibility targets and develop appropriate recycling programs and environmental initiatives.

The key to realizing savings from managing your print environment is to continually measure and adjust on an ongoing basis. You can see areas where improvements can be made by moving, consolidating, swapping, replacing or implementing a new control.

Step Three: Keep Control Over Your Printer Fleet

With the addition of authentication and document encryption found in fleet management tools, you can now prevent unauthorized access to documents and networks. Device Login, Secure On-Demand Print Release and other features help ensure that confidential information won’t end up in the wrong hands — whether from a cyber threat or when someone retrieves a document from the printer that was intended for someone else’s eyes.

Managed Print Services can improve a business’s efficiencies, security and environmental footprint while cutting down on overall and unforeseen expenses. With the right MPS provider, like the experts at the Gordon Flesch Company, you can consume less energy and paper resources, and your employees will get more done with an improved print workflow.

Today’s printers are highly functional machines that require robust controls, so be sure to check out our infographic below that highlights some more of the benefits of MPS. And, if your organization would like to save money and benefit from a Managed Print program, contact us today for a free, no-obligation Managed Print Needs Assessment!

Managed Print Cost Savings Stat Graphic

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