**Originally published on January 7, 2019**
We live in the age of Big Data. Massive upticks in the amount of information organizations are tasked with collecting and analyzing can no longer be conceptualized using run-of-the-mill, traditional methods.
Though, with the right tools, you can gain unprecedented insight into activity, costs, and trends that were invisible before. You can then use that insight as the basis for everything from small-scale behavioral changes to sweeping efficiency initiatives, which can streamline operations and save money over the long term.
Enterprise printing analytics is a perfect case in point.
No Print Control, No Savings
Sure, “guesstimating” how much your print environment costs you seems more convenient than delving into specifics. However, overlooking specifics such as the volume of color print jobs or simplex vs. duplex could be costing you more than you can fathom.
Gartner estimates that an organization’s total print costs account for anywhere from 1–3% of its overall revenue. This is a significant amount of money. A company with annual revenue of $10 million can expect to spend up to $300,000 on print management. However, with more control, companies can start saving. One study even points out that maintaining better control over office printing can reduce print spending by as much as 30%.
Even if you were to apply ballpark figures, using the stats above to compare your organization’s actual print spending with potential savings highlights how much money could be recouped with the right enterprise printing solution.
Nevertheless, ballpark figures aren’t good enough when developing a strategic plan to tighten print control and reduce print spending. You need to hone in on specifics, and that’s not always possible with most enterprise printing solutions out of the box.
To truly understand your print environment and make cost-saving improvements, it’s essential to have full awareness of detailed print costs and to be able to tie those costs to real-world activity at the macro and micro levels.
What You Gain From Increased Print Control and Oversight
Although the organization’s bottom line sees the most benefit, the usefulness of print analytics goes beyond a simple dollar value. It helps you identify areas you can improve to ease your workload and enhance the experience for end users.
For example, with a clear view into your entire print environment, regardless of its scale, you can start seeing how the number and size of print jobs vary across your network.
Are there remote locations that are generating high levels of print traffic?
Are there specific printers that are being over or underutilized?
Are these the possible causes of print-related support tickets?
In-depth print-auditing capabilities can help answer those questions. The same goes for streamlining processes.
Sound enterprise printing analytics can help identify print activity that leads to errors or inefficient protocols. If one ordinary user prints a disproportionate amount of color documents, it’s clear the default driver profile settings (or after-hours printing) need to be updated. Or, if the vast majority of users in a department are printing to a single device while another nearby printer is seeing very little use, then it’s time to start examining how their printers are installed.
And let’s not forget an overlooked advantage of increased print control: security.
With a complete digital trail for secure documents, admins can quickly identify and review suspicious print activity or provide the information that e-forensics teams need for investigations. This magnified insight into your print environment is a must-have in Zero Trust Network Architecture.
Yet, few enterprise printing solutions offer comprehensive enterprise printing analytics worthy of the name. What’s needed is a next-generation solution capable of providing a full suite of advanced reporting and auditing features.
Analyze Every Aspect of Printing
From the moment of implementation, PrinterLogic puts powerful enterprise printing analytics at your fingertips. Examine your print environment through the lens of advanced data points (e.g., print job date/time, document name, color vs. grayscale) and quickly determine which network printers see the heaviest utilization over a specific time period.
You can even link the usage data to the actual cost of printing. This means you can easily break down print-related cost by those all-important specifics that are so elusive when using other enterprise printing solutions.
PrinterLogic’s print auditing features also allow you to pinpoint your top users by print volume and be alerted when classified documents are printed. This information is incredibly useful in those rare—but sadly, not rare enough—cases when a departing employee is printing out privileged client lists or other confidential documents.
This highlights further how in-depth print analytics can feed into strengthening print security.
Want to keep higher-ups in the loop about how much money was spent on printing? PrinterLogic has a built-in reporting function that can automatically email print activity to department heads and decision-makers at scheduled intervals. AAA Carolinas benefited greatly from this feature and saved “a pretty good stack of dollars” simply by identifying unnecessary color printing and exerting better print control over monochrome defaults.
Implementing these enterprise printing analytics in your print environment is just a click away.
Provide your organization with print analytics that equates to more control, more oversight, and more cost-saving opportunities than ever before.