Printing and copying are often seen as some of the unavoidable costs of running an office. Whilst the importance of printed files and documentation remains, there are a number of ways to reduce the costs (and environmental impact) of printing.
Here, we explore seven simple steps to reduce your office printing costs today:
1. Implement Duplex Printing.
Duplex (or double-sided) printing can immediately cut the printer paper costs in half. Many modern printers include functionality to allow you to set duplex printing as standard so the whole office will immediately benefit from paper-conserving printing. As well as having to buy printer paper less frequently, duplex printing is also time-saving and environmentally-friendly.
2. Eco Options.
The ecological functions of your printer don’t just help reduce the negative effects your office has on the environment, they can also help reduce your energy bills. Installing and implementing all eco options built into your printer such as deep sleep modes, can instantly reduce the amount of power the office is using – reflected in the bill at the end of the month.
3. Careful Printing.
Encouraging all team members to check their work before printing will reduce the number of re-prints necessitated by mistakes. Ensure everyone in the office completes full spelling and grammar checks on presentations and documents before printing and use the Print Preview option. This is important when printing word processor files, emails and web pages in particular – ensuring the team only prints the required information rather than streams and streams of unnecessary email correspondence.
4. Review Ink Cartridges.
The cheapest ink cartridges on the market do not necessarily represent true economic value. Whilst the short term savings may be apparent, cheaper cartridges may support fewer prints – costing you more in the long run. Determine the economy of the cartridges by dividing the price of the unit by the number of pages it will print. This will help you determine the cost-per-page and a truer economy.
Printing specialists Printerland explain: “The highest capacity ink and toner cartridges are capable of printing hundreds of thousands of pages – so whilst the initial cost may be higher, they could save you money in the long run.”
5. Go Electronic.
Encourage the office to only print when absolutely necessary. Implement cloud storage programs such as Dropbox and OneDrive to allow colleagues share documents and files with each other rather than printed output. These programs can help save on energy, ink and paper costs – reserving the printer for only necessary tasks.
6. Font Control.
Whilst the difference in fonts may seem negligible, using an ink-conservative font such as Century Gothic rather than industry standard Arial could save a busy office a significant amount of money and energy every year. Rather than insisting all employees change their font like a control freak, simply change the default font on all office word processing programmes. Here is a guide to setting a default font on Microsoft Word. Reducing the size of the font can also help reduce the amount of ink used and the subsequent cost.
7. Dedicated Printers.
It may seem counter-intuitive to buy two printers instead of one to save money, but it could have significant long-term benefits. If your office requires a heavy volume of basic black and white text-heavy prints as well as a smaller volume high-quality colour prints – it may be beneficial to have a printer dedicated to these tasks. A printer capable of producing high quality colour prints will not be as economical as a dedicated workhorse printer when reeling off a high quantity of black and white prints. So use the workhorse for day-to-day tasks and the specialist printer for more specialised tasks – economising the printed output.