Implementing a good print policy is something that many offices fail to do. This oversight can lead to a lot of wasted toner, paper—and profit. Not having a print policy in place allows anyone in your organization to print anything, at any time, which can really add up (color prints can cost between 10 to 80 cents each depending on the printer that is used). Having a policy in place can help cut these costs and improve your bottom line.

If you are considering tightening the printing rules in your workplace, here are five tips to help:

  1. Put a print policy in place
  2. Set defaults on your print drivers
  3. Consider a Managed Print Program
  4. Print black and white more often
  5. Print color on the “right” color device

Let’s look closer.

  1. Put a Print Policy in Place – A print policy is a list rules that you put in place for employees to follow. There may be separate rules for different departments depending on their printing needs. Print policies can restrict things like color printing and enforce double-sided printing to save on costs. Usually, even the mention of a print policy will help reduce printing in the workplace by up to 10%.
  2. Set Defaults on Your Print Drivers – This is a quick and easy solution to ensure all prints are double-sided and/or black and white only. Different settings can also be implemented to make other functions a default setting on your printer. It’s fast and easy to do. Keep in mind that most printers come with default settings that encourage the use of consumables, so take a moment and check the user settings in your office.
  3. Consider a Managed Print Program – A good Managed Print Program is different from a print policy because it adds the benefits of technology to properly manage your print-related assets and activities. End users also enjoy proactive supply and service fulfillment rather than having to order toner or place a service call when it’s too late! Managed Print Programs have proven to save companies both money and hassle—some companies have even claimed to save up to 30% in printing costs. A Managed Print Program can also help your office reduce waste and can go far in helping you to achieve your environmental goals with a greener print strategy.
  4. Use Black and White – Color printing is a luxury that many departments don’t really need. Many clients don’t expect full color documents either. A smarter choice is to use black and white printing for internal documents and use color sparingly and only where needed to enhance a customer facing document. The savings is considerable because black and white prints only require one cartridge while color printers require four different toners to be combined to produce an image.
  5. Print Color on the “Right” Color Device – Office printers are no different than automobiles in the sense that some get better gas mileage than others. Printing color on small ink jet printers is perhaps the most costly, and your cost per page is typically less the larger the print device. Routing your color print volumes to the most “economical” color printer can cut your cost per letter size page by a nickel or more.

Taking advantage of these five simple tips will go far in reducing print related waste, lowering your printing costs and making your office a much greener place to be.

Do you have an office print policy that is working for your business? Please tell us about it!