Using Printer Auditing Software to Decrease Consumables Costs

Posted by Jordan Pusey

There are a number of frequently cited statistics about the costs of enterprise printing that should make anyone who operates within a budget—and let’s face it, that’s pretty much all of us—stop and think about the value of printer auditing software.

The first statistic is that the average printing cost for each employee impacts the company by between $600 and $1,300 per year (Citigroup-Environmental Defense study). That alone is reason for pause. What kind of cost breakdown would printer audit software reveal? For instance, how much of that cost is color ink when it could have been monochrome (at a fraction of the price)? How many single-sided pages could have been double-sided? Now imagine the aggregate savings you’d see by cutting that figure by 5, 20, or even as much as 40%!

But the second statistic is even more concerning: Close to 20% of all printed material is considered waste before it even leaves the printer. These are the pages that have a single URL on them when printing from a website. Or the few lines of pseudo-legal disclaimer text at the bottom of a printed e-mail that spill over onto another page. Or forgotten print jobs that sit in the tray for a week until someone scraps them. Or even someone hitting print, finding an error on the screen, and hitting print again. Some might even print several times during a printer outage only to discover all their extra prints sitting on the printer after the error clears.

Based on the figure above, that means consumable costs of $120 to $260 per employee are currently going straight into the recycle bin each year. That’s not only bad for the environment. It’s also bad for your bottom line.

Printer auditing software can help decrease the costs of consumables by allowing you to precisely track and summarize printing activity enterprise-wide according to a variety of criteria. Some examples are:

  • Which department is doing a disproportionate amount of color printing?
  • What are the company’s most heavily used printers?
  • Who printed 33 single-sided copies of a 50-page report?
  • How many employees are printing non-work-related documents like flyers and chain e-mails?

With the advantages of print audit support, you’ll know the answers to questions like these. That in turn will enable you to address the root causes by end-of-lifeing inefficient legacy devices, consolidating underutilized machines, or by changing individual behavior through awareness-raising initiatives.

That last one is huge, by the way. If you can remind employees to self-monitor their consumables usage with a successful campaign (“Don’t print it, PDF it!”) or through incentives (say, a bonus to the most print-efficient department), it’s possible to drive down enterprise printing costs significantly. But you need to have solid data in hand before you start shifting company policy.

PrinterLogic’s enterprise print management solution offers fully integrated print auditing software that has empowered companies to do all of the above. And we’ve got the testimonials to prove it. Multiple independent case studies with our customers have shown that organizations of all sizes have used PrinterLogic’s printer auditing module to slash the cost of consumables by 50% or more. So, in addition to the cost benefits of more streamlined, centralized print management, your organization can also see huge front-end gains from print auditing.

In short, tackling consumables usage is an easy way for your organization to realize steep, sustained cost savings very quickly. PrinterLogic’s powerful printer auditing software will give you the clear, concise, comprehensive data you need to go about it.