The Printer Predicament
Choosing the Printer That Fits Your Company’s Needs
By Ryan Duarte
Choosing a printer can be a large and extensive endeavor. Printers are used as an apparatus of productivity and are a mechanism for printing work orders, invoices and many other business related items. The quest to find the right printer for your company can be a daunting undertaking. There are many different types of printers today. Laser printers, dot matrix printers, solid ink printers, label printers, and portable printers are just a few that you company can look at. There are many factors that come into play in your quest to find the right printer for your company. There are several major factors you should consider: Leasing versus buying, the type of printer & the cost of the printer, and foremost the cost of ownership.
When it Comes to the Type of Printer, Consider the Pros and Cons
There are several pros and cons to leasing versus buying a printer. Leased printers typically come with a service agreement. Service agreements are good because anytime the printer breaks down, it will get serviced for free or cheap. Leasing printers also allows you to get rid of equipment that is antiquated or broken and will allow you upgrade to a newer model without having to expend a large outlay of capital. A company that prints a high volume of black and white or color prints will tend to save more money during the year. Every month you should know exactly how much you’re going to pay for the printer lease and supplies. However, the problem with leasing is that you will typically end up paying a lot more pear year for leasing the printer. Buying a printer outright is a huge advantage to companies that print lower to medium volume of prints. In a lower to medium volume printing environment, the monthly cost of toner or ink comes out to be a measurable amount less. This translates into huge savings because 1 cartridge of toner or ink can range in price from $50 to $200 dollars, and usually only prints 1500-2500 pages. The less you print, the more you could save. Leasing a printer has a fixed cost every month or year, so you will need to do some research to figure out which is best for your company.
Choose the Type of Printer Wisely
Now you must choose the right type of printer for your company. You must weigh the type and cost. There are many different types of printers in use, great for black and white and color printing; however most HVAC companies are not printing large amounts of things in color, they typically only utilize black and white. Laser printers are probably the biggest bang for the buck, especially for black and white prints. Laser printers can be brought relatively inexpensively, and cost somewhere in the $100 to $500 dollar range. Lasers are typically the most common in house printers today for most small to medium sized companies. Once you have done your research, you must take a look at the cost of ownership
The Cost of Owning a Printer
The biggest problem with today’s printers is the cost of ownership. The cost of ownership is how much the printer is going to cost you to use, over the life of the unit. Sure, you can buy a really inexpensive or cheap printer, but you may find out the ink or toner costs 100-200 per cartridge, and typically only print 2500 pages. That is not adding value. Laser printers actually offer value and are very reliable. Surprisingly inkjet printers and laser printers have the same startup costs. But as time goes on, the laser printer has a competitive advantage, in terms you can measure. While inkjet cost per page tends to be around $20 cents for black and white, laser printers average around 7-8 cents per page. This cost adds up over the life of the printer and saves you a lot of money in the long run.
Of all the tough choices you will make in your business, choosing the right printer shouldn’t be a decision that keeps you up at night. Most HVAC companies will not want to choose an inkjet printer because of high cost of ownership. Laser printers appear to be the most cost effective and biggest bang for the money. Depending on your volume, you may want to choose buying a printer out right as well. With the ever increasing technology in printers, the future only looks brighter every day. Choose wisely!