So many printer networks evolve with a business. It’s a common story; a few new team members get added and another printer is thrown into the mix. A new office, another new printer. The functionality of another office changes and another printer is added or moved. Before we know it, we have a sprawling, evolved printing network that doesn’t deliver against the business’s needs, isn’t cost-effective, interferes with data security and drains power (and therefore eats profit), even when it isn’t in use.

By creating a printer network with intention you can ensure your printers are delivering against the business’s needs, but also that they are doing so both cost-effectively and in a data-safe way.

Here are 6 questions you need to consider before creating your printer network:

  1. What do you need from printers?

If your business has a printing department, they are likely to need a better quality printer to print high-quality handbooks, guidebooks or customer pitches than the sales team who mainly print documents for internal purposes. Ideally, where possible, using the same printers can reduce your stock requirements of consumables such as ink and toner.

  1. Find a cost-effective and reliable printer manufacturer with the right printing equipment to meet the deliverables you identified in Step 1.

If working with an independent print management company it’s likely that, through their relationship, you may be able to secure more competitive prices for your new printer fleet.

  1. Consider user access

Who needs to use the printers and should their use be limited to certain days, times or printer stations? When should access be allowed and how? You can read about some of the different features available to keep your data safe in our blog ‘Printer, scanner and fax technology that’s keeping your data safe’.

  1. Where will printing be sent when one printer is out of service?

Having a backup printer available is important to ensure seamless continuity for your business administrators should one of your devices need attention. Identify which printer should be used and how it can be accessed.

  1. Set up your printer network for remote distribution of software and printer drivers to multiple clients. This makes it easy to patch and update systems outside of work hours.
  2. Consider cloud-based printing.

Software such as Papercut Hive can distribute printing when a printer is already in use making it possible for users to access printouts quickly at all times.

Once you have answers to these questions, you can build an idea of what your printer network should look like. Contact ASL Group to find out more about how we can help you create a printer network that delivers what’s needed, supports regulatory compliance, helps keep costs low and ensures continuity in the event of a printer crisis. You can chat with our sales team or use Ava, our new intelligent assistant.