Being in a company that specialises in Managed Print Services (MPS) means that I spend a lot of time speaking to Customer and potential Customer IT Managers, Financial Managers and Facilities Managers about their office automation environments. Not the most exciting topic, I agree, but one of those that needs to be discussed for a business to run smoothly (have you ever seen what happens to an employee when their printer does not work? It’s usually not a pretty sight and has been the punchline of many entertaining television commercials).
No single conversation is ever the same but there is one recurring theme that comes up time and again, that is when the question arises, “…so Mr/Mrs Customer, do you want to have a Managed Print Service or an Office Automation Solution?” The response I get without fail is, “but we already have a Managed Print Service”. The unfortunate reality is that although most vendors sell their solutions as MPS solutions, they are in-fact not MPS solutions, but the customer is none the wiser.
So, I thought it would be helpful to Customers to have some guideline metrics to check just how much of an MPS service they do have in place. We have therefor put together a set of questions (MPS Scorecard) that should help achieve this, I hope you find it useful.
The following items should all be standard inclusions of your Managed Print Service:
- Strategy to reduce print with supporting user Print Policy
- Device monitoring software for pro-active monitoring of fleet health (alerts, status, etc.)
- User management software to track user print behaviour and deploy rules based printing (I’ve included 3 of the most important rules)
- Rule 1: Auto delete jobs not collected (purged jobs)
- Rule 2: Default duplex print/copy
- Rule 3: Default mono print/copy
- User authentication for print job release (pull-print enablement)
- POPI compliance with document authentication lock-down
- Management reporting
- Consolidated costs across all devices, brands, regions and vendors
- Consolidated print usage across all devices, brands, regions and vendors
- Consolidated device status across all devices, brands, regions and vendors
- Rationalisation and redeployment recommendations based on device utilisation against capacity
- Monthly billing reconciliation across all devices, brands, regions and vendors
- Billing checks against contractual obligations
- Vendor contract management
- Rental and service contract review, negotiation, collation
- Performance, meetings, problem resolution
- Centralized call logging and help desk across all devices, brands, regions and vendors
How does your Managed Print Service stack up?