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How can businesses go about reducing office printing costs?



How can businesses go about reducing office printing costs?

Ask any company and you will find in all likelihood agree that printer consumables do not seem to be getting any less expensive. According to some studies, the average office worker prints around sixty pages a day or twelve thousand sheets a year. At a printing cost that typically goes from two to ten cents/page, the associated costs can add up quickly. Nowadays in the world of tablets, smartphones, and reliable aftermarket cartridges, there are new opportunities to reduce costs. On the following line, you will find ways to print less and also better ways to avoid printing at all.


Smart printing

Preview before printing.

Busy workers are frequently in such a rush to print that they actually forget to preview their document. Take a second to adjust the margins and have a quick glance over for spelling errors. It will only take you a couple of extra minutes and you will be preventing having to print a second copy.

Print in greyscale or black and white.

For documents that do not actually require color graphics, take advantage of the greyscale settings and print only in black and white. You can choose the “print in greyscale” field in Word by going to the advanced settings of the printer in the print menu.  Printing in greyscale will only draw ink from your black ink cartridge. This very simple adjustment allows color cartridges to save ink and take a break and avoids utilizing unnecessary ink.

Use the draft mode.

For documents that are definitely not presentation worthy consider using the draft mode. This is another option that you can find in your printer’s advanced menu – draft mode utilizes up to fifty percent less ink and is actually great for emails or also for disposable office memos.

Use double-sided.

Save large amounts of paper when you utilize your printers duplex printing option or double-sided option. This is ideal when printing lengthy manuals or reports, you can also find this option in the printer’s advanced setting options.

Select your paper wisely.

Not all paper is equal, accurately choose the paper that goes into the printer. Printer paper is usually graded according to 4 relevant criteria: brightness, weight, opacity, and texture. For economical, disposable prints it is best to use a lower-end multi-purpose paper. For high-end prints, you want to consider a more proper, expensive inkjet or laserjet paper.


Get your entire office and colleagues onboard


In the age of tablets and smartphone devices, it is easier than ever to cut on pointless print jobs. There are several apps and programs like Microsoft OneDrive, DropBox and even Google Docs that will allow you to collaborate on the cloud or through an extranet with your colleagues and avoid printing unnecessary stuff. Instead of printing the agenda for your next week and meetings, send an email with a digital copy so colleagues can follow along on their tablet. Want to have a colleague make changes to your business plan? Share the file in Google Docs and they will be able to make live changes directly from their device. Apps like Concur or MileIQ will help you calculate travel expenses and you can also easily collate travel cost and time all on the convenience of your phone. Your office can also consider online banking to manage finances. Avoid having to print out checks monthly, it will definitely cut down on ink and paper.

Multiple printers are cheaper than just one.

Depending on the type of printing the office does it might actually be cheaper to invest in two or more printers. Buy a monochrome jet to do the heavy lifting such as printing lengthy business contracts or also legal documents. For pictures or media files, buy a color inkjet printer. Having the capability to swap between printers depending on the job will end up saving you money in the long run.

Practice preventive maintenance.

Routinely run printer cleanings on the machine and regularly service your printers to make sure they are performing at the optimal level. With a bit of love, a heavy-duty printer can last a really long time.

Consider an external provider.

In case in-house printing increases your cots greatly, it might be a good option to consider an external local provider or an online reprographics local shop. You will ensure a high-quality product and the cost per unit can really end up being better than printing it by yourself.

Encourage a recycling culture.

Recycle, reuse and reduce. Encourage personnel to recycle outdated documents instead of throwing them to the trash. Reuse old files for taking notes in business gatherings and meetings or for printing minor new files. Do not limit the recycling to simply copy paper. Consider recycling other papers like notebooks, file folders, envelopes, and stationery too.


Reassessing your firm’s printer policies can take some time but the pay off in the pocketbook makes it well worth it. Even incorporating one or two of these tips will probably reduce consumable costs considerably. Go ahead and post a sign near each printer with some friendly reminders on how people should go about printing smart. Introduce your colleagues to new collaborative programs and apps that will make the job easier. Put recycling bins throughout all the office so recycling becomes easy and second nature. Eventually, workers will get on board and you will actually be well on your way to becoming an office that is super proud of its print savvy expertise.

Mary is a London-based copywriter. Her passions are the online world and music, and in her free time she enjoys reading her favourite books as well as playing chess and travelling.