There is one thing we find quite annoying when discussing print manager software: the discussions seem to always be focused on "traditional" issues such as printing cost and security and document confidentiality, while completely neglecting another very important aspect: how print management affects the company IT infrastructure. After all, that is the backbone on which the organization's processes and systems rest, and the IT department are the ones responsible for networking the printers.
So in this blog post, we want to raise awareness of this issue by writing about the top 5 benefits that print manager software can bring to the IT department.
1. Networking printers efficiently
Printers are often a hassle to network efficiently, especially if there are multiple geographic locations in the organization. When optimizing the company wide area network, printing almost always has to be considered, because depending on how the printers are networked, printing can hugely impact the WAN traffic.
A good print management solution should help the IT department cut WAN traffic, and thereby help the organization wide network get more efficient as a whole.
2. Less printer support issues
Without a centralized print management software, different factors can affect the uptime of the printers. For example printer drivers may have to be updated, the network might be slow, the print servers may crash or not be reached, and it may be difficult to proactively detect and prevent causes of problems before it is too late (users start complaining).
A good print management solution should centralize control over the individual printer queues, provide good troubleshooting tools, and help the IT department improve the printing reliability by networking printers efficiently (goes back to my first point).
3. Lessening tedious print management tasks
Many IT departments spend considerable time on things like setting up new printers in different sites, maintaining print servers, updating printer drivers, supporting users, and other tedious tasks.
A good print management software is one that reduces and automates as many as possible of these what we call "operational level" tasks.
4. Improves strategic flexibility for the IT department
While reducing the operational level input needed, a good print manager system should also improve the flexibility that the IT department has, and make room for more high-level strategic control and decision making. It should be easy for the IT department to make and quickly implement decisions leading to reduced costs, higher end user efficiency, and better environmental performance. Not only in relation to print management, but also overall for the IT department, because the printing aspect of the infrastructure should interfere as little as possible with the overall company infrastructure.
5. Improves company scalability
Printing is a hassle when a company grows or acquires new offices. Because the printers have to be networked in each office, new servers have to be set up, and if the company is to gain control over the printers, then new software has to be deployed.
A good print management software should allow the company to grow, shrink, acquire, cut, and change in any way it needs, with minimal hassle for the IT department when it comes to networking printers and getting control over them.
Summary of how print management software can benefit the IT department
So there you go, 5 benefits that are rarely discussed in relation to print management, and all related to the IT department. Did we miss something? Perhaps there are other important aspects that we completely missed.