Most businesses print a great deal. In fact, with statistics suggesting the average office employee prints as many as 10,000+ pages per year, most print more than they’re aware.
Ensuring you have someone on hand to quickly and effectively maintain and repair printers is essential to maintaining office productivity. However, with dozens of printer repair options available to most organizations, making a choice can be difficult.
Most importantly, your printer repair partner will likely be working with your organization for years to come. Any partnership you make must be based on mutual understanding, growth, and trust.
Taking the time to choose a printer repair company that meets your needs (now and in the future) will help your organization to see more value and benefit from that partnership.
Service Volume and Capabilities
How many printers are on your network? How many offices does your organization have? What printer models do you have? How old are those printers? How often do they need servicing? How often do they break down?
Different printer repair companies will offer vastly different services. You have to match service volume and capabilities to your needs. This means:
- Support volume capabilities
- Supported models/brands
- Extras such as whether service is covered under warranty
- Ability to work within budget
- Costs per machine type or volume
Each of these considerations is extremely important because they affect the quality of service as well as whether the organization can help you at all.
If one organization specializes in HP printers but most of yours are Canon, you’re likely wasting their time. If they work with your brand to repair printers under warranty, your organization will likely save a lot of money.
Considering services offered, service volume (ie. whether they can easily meet your organization’s needs or whether your organization might be too small to be considered a partner to them), and technician specializations will help you narrow options.
Reputation and Quality-of-Service
It’s important to get a good idea of who and want a printer repair organization is before partnering with them. This can include simply googling the organization to look at reviews, customer information, and in forums. It may also include talking to customer service, reviewing their social media, or asking for references.
Whatever your route, it’s a good idea to make it thorough, to bring up any questions you have about service before going into a contract, and to ensure you know what you’re getting into.
Here, it’s also a good idea to look at Service Level Agreements, both on public websites and in your private contract. How long does it take to respond to a call? Are there any guarantees about print availability? Are new printers provided while old ones are fixed? What happens if those guidelines are not met?
Defining quality of service upfront will allow you to set expectations and to understand when to act and break a contract if that quality is not being met.
Budget and Costs
It’s important that any print repair solution fit into your budget. This can vary depending on your existing solutions, existing costs, and your set goals for the future.
For example, if you’re currently hiring printer repair on an ad-hoc basis, you’re likely spending a great deal of internal resources on doing so. If an IT person is called, she will have to determine the printer needs repair, will have to call an external print repair organization, will have to wait for them to arrive, and then will have to pay their (single) fee.
This is extremely resource-intensive in terms of utilizing IT time (IT staff are often expensive), reducing the efficiency of office workers (repairs take a long time and printer-usage is bottlenecked until repairs are finished), and cost of repairs (individual repairs are significantly costlier than long-term repair contracts).
Outsourcing printer repair can sometimes save your organization over handling everything separately, which is something to consider in budget. However, the printer repair must fit into budget and they must be able to validate any costs you are paying.
Consider Sourcing a Full-Service Solution
While printer repair contracts can greatly benefit most organizations, many actually benefit from taking print management a step further. Managed print services, where a third-party steps in to take over most or all print-related solutions inside your organization, reduces costs, optimizes printer-usage and deployment, and reduces total instances of printer breakdown.
Why? In most cases, a managed print services provider will step in and immediately optimize printers to best-meet office needs while reducing energy-usage, print-waste, and impact.
New printers are installed with software for remote management and updates, serviced regularly, and managed by a party specializing in print management and repair. This means printers are less likely to break down, more likely to be repaired before issues become major problems, and less likely to become security risks.
Most managed print service providers also offer help-line support with repair teams on-call, so printers can be replaced or repaired same-day when something goes wrong.
Managed print services will remove some of your organization’s autonomy when it comes to print, but they can greatly reduce costs while improving the efficiency of printer repair. However, you should review options to ensure MPS is a good fit for your organization before proceeding.
Maintaining and repairing printers is an important part of any office, simply because print files are very much necessary for many. A broken printer can result in bottlenecking, slowed work, and wasted time as staff, IT employees, and others spend time with a printer they can’t actually fix. Outsourcing to a third-party works to reduce issues, improves the speed of repairs, and reduces print-related bottlenecks so your office stays productive.