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5 questions to ask when buying a new office printer

You can find a printing device that enhances the way you work while providing a return on investment

The functionality of the modern printer extends way beyond printing and into the realm of document solutions. Technological advances now enable printers to scan and fax, connect to Wi-Fi, automatically punch holes or staple documents, and even control who prints as well as quantity. 

Evidently, with all these additional functions and options, it may be more difficult to make the best printer purchase for your business – but we’re here to help. Considering that the average lifespan of an office printer lasts
about seven years, if you make the correct decision, you’ll enjoy a reliable, high-quality device for close to a decade.

Will it meet your office’s print needs?     

Many businesses do not have a defined strategy (job types, volumes, limits, colour usage and so on) when it comes printing. This lack of control makes investment decisions all the more challenging. Every business is different and what may be the perfect printer choice for others could be a bad match for you. Therefore, before committing to buying a new device, it is highly recommended that you carry out a thorough analysis of your current print environment, highlighting your current printing needs, in addition to your pain points and medium-term strategies. To get started, here is a list of some essential points to consider: 

  • How many pages does your business print per month?
  • How often do you print in colour vs. black and white?
  • What type of documents are you primarily printing? Plain black and white text document or colourful and vibrant, high-coverage content?
  • What paper size do you tend to print on?
  • How many employees are currently using each device?
  • What is your annual print budget?

An MFP or a printer?

The rise of remote working has seen the demand for personal printers soar. Some employees, however, also need to scan and copy documents from their homes which means that a multifunction printer (MFP) is the best option. These compact devices are often the popular choice for smaller workgroups in offices, particularly where there are space limitations.

While the immediate cost of opting for several smaller A4 devices may appear cheaper, a larger A3 MFP could prove to be the more cost-effective choice for many businesses in the long run particularly for those with higher print volumes. Kyocera’s TASKalfa A3 MFPs, for example, have proven to be hugely popular for even the most demanding of print environments, their versatility and reliability becoming all the more valuable in these times of disruption

Which extra printing functions should you consider?

Once you have narrowed down whether your business would benefit more from having an MFP or a standard desktop printer, there are still many other optional functions to look out for that could greatly boost your workplace efficiency. Some popular options include: 

  • Duplexing or double-sided printing.
  • Touchscreen functionalities.
  • Hole punching and stapling features.
  • Password or key card access for greater
  • Wi-Fi connectivity for more agile working.
  • Fax.

When drawing up your printer shortlist, it’s worth comparing different models and seeing what’s already included with your purchase. For example, Kyocera’s ECOSYS M6235cidn MFP already comes with double-sided print, copy and scan, an intuitive user touch panel, quick scanning features and is integrated with the HyPAS solution platform to enable businesses install extra applications.

While devices with extra features may command a greater premium, the saved time, convenience and improved productivity and security long-term make it worth the initial expense. 

What are your print security needs?

Hackers continue to probe for weak spots and businesses need to be proactive in the area of cybersecurity – printing devices are no exception. Therefore, to avoid the potential scenario of your client or employee data falling into the wrong hands, it is crucial that you evaluate how secure your chosen printing device is before making a purchase. If your company often handles sensitive information, it is best to search for a printer with a wide range of security features such as data encryption, firewall functionality and passwords for login. 

Should I buy or lease a printer?

So, it’s finally time to buy your chosen printer and you’re left with two options – purchase it upfront or lease it out. The greatest difference between these two methods of payment is how much your business will pay in total. A lease could be the superior option if you’re a small business or buying an expensive device as you will be able to pay monthly over an agreed duration. And once your contract is up, you are likely to be given the option to buy the device or renew the contract with a new device. Nevertheless, you must consider the interest that is included into each monthly payment and the fact that long-term, you will end up paying more to lease a printer than buy one upfront. 

Buy the printer that matches your needs

Ultimately, buying a printer for your office is all down to your printing needs and budget. In the hybrid working age, there is no one-size-fits-all printing solution out on the market: the best printer is the one that’s right for your organisation. 

Choosing the perfect printer starts with you. 

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