7 Tips to Reduce Printing
Guest blog from Limpio, UKHCA commercial members
Despite the historical talk of the paperless office going back decades now and the advent of more and more advanced technology, Homecare organisations are still heavily reliant on the printed document. Whilst some of the larger organisations have been able to transition to electronic forms and processes, most small and medium homecare organisations are still heavily reliant on printing.
Whether it is handbooks, templates, NHS contracts, Care Plans, Consent forms or Policies many organisations still need to print these out. Whilst the cost of printers may have reduced, the associated costs of printing (such as ink and consumable costs) have not and soon add up. Below we have listed a few tips which you may find useful in helping reduce the hidden cost of printing and allow you to divert funds to more useful areas of the business in addition to reducing the environmental impact your printing has.
Default to mono
Most organisations have access to a colour printer nowadays and typically the default setting is to print in colour. Whilst it looks nice on the page up to 86% of documents printed are for internal purposes only where colour is simply not necessary. Printing in colour can be as much as 10 x the cost of printing in mono, so be sure to change your default settings.
Restrict Colour Printing/Copying
There are many software programs available nowadays that have the ability to restrict or deny colour printing completely for certain users or departments (some of them free). This can be useful to enforce the use of mono to ensure colour is printed only when necessary, or by authorised individuals.
Always Double Side
It’s quite a simple thing but still many people print single sided and therefore use twice the paper they actually need. Again, it’s worth setting the default settings on your printer.
If you want to be even more efficient in your paper usage most printers and software packages (i.e. MS Word) have the ability to print 2 or 4-Up printing whereby there would be 2 pages side by side on a landscape sheet of A4 paper. This would reduce your paper usage by 50% again.
The majority of people have access to mobile communication today and can view documents electronically on their phone or tablet so rather than print or copy a document to distribute to many people, scan it and email it to them. That way they will have access to it whenever they want and there’s no hard copies left sitting around (particularly important if it is sensitive information).
Monitor Print Usage
The old adage ‘you can’t manage what you can’t measure’ always rings true particularly around printing. Whilst it might be tempting to stick your head in the sand and just put the costs down to a business overhead if you know the who, what and why around print costs you will be able to better manage and therefore reduce your costs. There are many simple software programs available that will track print usage and tell you who is printing how much and on what type of document. This will let you drill down and investigate if this printing is necessary and could it be done more efficiently. Fortunately, there are many programs available for free that can do the basic functions for you.
Create a print Policy
Once you have analysed the importance of documents you need to print, implement a company print policy outlining such things as default settings and rules. For example, you could ban the printing of emails (after all the E does stand for electronic!) as well as confirming default settings and guidelines.
Limpio are proud to be a commercial member of UKHCA and provide advice, products, support and consumables relating to office printing, copying and scanning for Homecare organisations. If you would like any assistance or further information, please contact Adam Johnson directly on 07880 223 221 or email [email protected]
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