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How printing is costing companies

NAIROBI, Kenya, Oct 27- Emerging statistics show that unchecked printing could be significantly affecting company bottom lines, according to a leading technology firm.

Speaking during a joint HP and Computech briefing on multifunctional printers on Tuesday Robert Ngugi of HP East Africa’s Imaging and Printing Group said, on average, companies spend 6.1 percent of their revenue in printing related costs which could be channeled into other company growth projects.

Mr Ngugi said the problem was that most companies do not keep records of their printing costs.

He said IT was becoming an ever increasing component of doing business, hence the need to have different solutions that address the diverse printing requirements for different sized companies.

Computech Regional Sales Director Davinder Mathur said the cost of doing business for most organisations had gone up, and were looking for avenues where costs can be cut if not reduced while at the same time improving productivity.

“One of the solutions is addressing your printing needs more effectively, by consolidating printers, copiers, scanners, and fax machines into multifunctional devices,” Mr Mathur said.

Mr Mathur said this would help organisations not only centralise their systems, but reduce costs on purchasing and maintaining devices that could fax, print, scan and photocopy.

Mr Mathur also attributes the rise in printing costs to the rapid growth of the IT industry which makes it necessary to meet increasing customer demands.

The statistics also show that on average, 10 percent of cost goes into purchasing of the hardware (printer), while 90 percent is spent on hidden costs such as maintenance, buying of toners as well as cost of paper.

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Mr Ngugi said employers should engage with their employees and make them aware of the costs arguing it is everyone’s responsibility to cut down on costs as much as possible.

“If your workforce is not put on check, they are most likely going to misuse printing services.”

He said the statistic on printer to worker ratio had some companies at close to 1:1 which going forward makes the whole venture unfeasible.

“The need for faster processing of documents should not be countered by increasing the number of printers, which just drive power costs up.” 

He revealed that HP had developed a three tier strategy (infrastructure optimisation, improving user printer ratio and optimisation of workflow services) aimed at reducing costs.

“It’s an ongoing process that needs monitoring and improvements for it to be effective to the end user,” he said.

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