meph’s blog


Thoughts about printer consolidation

Filed under: Uncategorized — Tags: , , — Michael @ 09:59

I guess that I don’t have to explain the benefits of consolidation. Regarding printer consolidation, let me tell you some facts (or just thoughts, because my mind is racing atm ;)) anyway.

I work for a company with…

  • ~80 employees (just the “office people”)
  • ~80 workstations
  • ~60 printers (including copiers with print function, excluding barcode printers for document archiving)

Some day I did read some article which said that 10-12 employees per printer is cost-effective. You see that we are far away from that.
Above from that we currently don’t have a standard printer model. We use to buy color inkjets (even photo printers :S), mono laserprinters, mono and color copier systems resulting in 98723429384723 different drivers (PCL and PS in some cases). The effort to maintain this is just too high. Furthermore most of our printers don’t support ethernet, so they are connected to workstations via USB and shared. This leads to computers running 24/7.
In order to fix that, I think about how many printers our employees really need. Considering central positioning of printers and buying printers which can handle the incurred printing volume I come to the conclusion that ~10 devices are sufficient (besides of the copiers, which won’t be replaced because they’re also used for scanning documents). Some months ago I talked to a sales guy from Konica-Minolta. The background is that we already have copiers and fax machines from them for several years now and there are existing leasing contracts for these devices and – most important – we have a good relationship to them. He offered the C20P print system, which meets our demands. We have to pay around 35 euro per month for one device, including 5000 mono pages und 1000 color pages, supplies and service/maintenance (further mono pages cost 0,012 Euro and color pages 0,05 Euro each). Unfortunately I don’t know much about the “financial” stuff, but I think that’s a fair price – particularly with regards to the simplification of the driver management and decreased cost for supplies (we order new ink cartridges and toner very often and have three boards full of them).

Well, what do you think? Do you have comparable values for such environments in view of monthly costs of maintenance? Do you have experience with printer consolidation? Tell me something 😉

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