5 Steps to Starting Your Enterprise Print Audit
Enterprises often conduct audits to ensure that they are meeting compliance requirements and efficiently making their way towards achieving their goals.
Audits provide organizations with suggestions as to where they can improve in their business processes, and often deliver valuable information assisting organizations in meeting their objectives.
Effective risk management is also a significant outcome of enterprise auditing, giving the organization a comprehensive outlook and assessment on the risks that the organization is currently facing and may face in the future.
With printing being a vital component of day to day business in all enterprises, firms have begun conducting enterprise print audits, monitoring their print environments with the goal of discovering efficiency savings.
Gartner reports that companies are spending up to three percent of their annual revenue on printing related expenses.
Print audits can help organizations track their printing down to individual users and help save your company a significant amount of revenue spent on printing expenses ever year!
This article will discuss some of the drivers of print auditing and recommend steps to take to get your print audit started!
Driving Forces behind Print Auditing
Enterprises across the world are beginning to realize the significant role that printing plays in their organizations.
Many companies have begun to evaluate printing based upon certain criteria that seem to be essential factors relating to enterprise printing.
Let’s have a look at 3 major issues:
Inkjet Printing Equipment and Total Cost of Printing
With the uprising of laser printers, the price of inkjet printers has declined significantly, and are now easier to acquire!
The average life of ink cartridges is significantly short, leading to a very expensive per-page total cost of printing for these printers.
Impact of Printing on being Environmentally Friendly
As environmental sustainability is becoming a major concern for governments around the world, enterprises are actively looking for ways to go green!
Compliance with green practices is no longer simply optional, rather, many companies have incorporated green practices into their company wide strategy and long-term vision.
Unquestionably, printing and environmental sustainability are quite closely related, and so enterprises have begun conducting audits to further investigate their printer usage, paper wastage, and toner disposal methods.
Cost of Color Printing
Unfortunately, most end-users of printing equipment do not have a thorough idea of how much color printing costs.
However, after basic evaluation of their print environment, corporate decision makers quickly realize how costly color printing truly is, and become reluctant to invest in color printing for their enterprise print environment.
5 Steps to Get Your Print Audit Started
To get your enterprise print audit underway, you should begin by taking a general account of your physical printer fleet, including how many printing devices you currently have, and how many are functional or non-functional.
After completing this basic discovery investigation, companies should undertake the following steps to conduct a comprehensive print audit, and discover precious data intelligence to drive future decisions related to printing.
Check out this free whitepaper on the hidden costs of printing!
Step 1: Rank company departments
Rank company departments by their printing amounts and create a list of the top departments on a monthly and quarterly basis.
Departments should be further studied and surveyed to determine the reason behind their printing trends and whether they are engaging in legitimate, good printing, or unnecessary, bad printing.
Step 2: Rank individual employees
Rank individual company employees by their printing amounts. Many enterprise print audits have shown that heavy-printing employees tend to print documents that are completely unrelated to their work!
Step 3: Calculate the total cost of printing per page
Calculate the total cost of printing per page, based on and consisting of several factors including cartridge/toner, paper, electricity, maintenance, print software expenses, downtime, wastage, etc.
In many instances, companies ignore important underlying cost factors behind the cost of printing, such as downtime and the resulting reduced employee productivity!
Step 4: Determine the usage rate of printers
Determine the usage rate of printers that are installed and the ratio of printers to users for your enterprise.
Often, companies tend to pay support and maintenance fees for printers that are not even connected to the enterprise network any longer!
Step 5: Create a detailed report of all print jobs
Create a detailed report of all print jobs with criteria such as colors, paper size, paper quality, duplex vs. non-duplex, print job release dates, and print job owners.
Understanding the intricacies of print jobs will allow enterprises to determine if specific documents are being printed according to the correct settings or not.
For example, many organizations tend to waste color on documents which don’t need to be printed in color, but rather can easily be printed and used in grayscale or simple black and white.
Putting it all together
Taking these steps will help your organization make smart, data-driven decisions related to printing.
A comprehensive analysis of print audit results can significantly help your company begin saving on printing, while improving the efficiency of the print process today!
Get started with our free print tracker software, which is non-disruptive and easy to set up. It will help give insight into your print environment and help control spending.
Have you started your print audit yet? Did you find it helped you get a better idea on how to save on costs and improve productivity? Let us know in the comments below!
Check out this free whitepaper on the hidden costs of printing!
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