A short while back we were asked to offer information for an article about ways IT departments can become more efficient. I loved writing this piece even thought I am not all that IT savvy myself (I get all excited when I get the HP LJ 5550 to do exactly what I want). I do work with a lot of IT people – customers, service providing partners and our own IT staff.
So why do IT staff need shortcuts to productivity, specifically for printers? IDC states that the average IT department spends 15% of their time on printer related issues. Printers tend to be under looked and forgotten about until they don’t work. Printers also require a broad spectrum of electrical and mechanical knowledge, something some IT professionals don’t have much experience with. These suggestions are specifically geared towards the print environment in an organization, but could be widely applied to other aspects of IT as well.
1. Plan ahead. If having a printer go down is a huge hassle and kills productivity, have a clean one with a toner in it ready to move in as a replacement. Just make sure to test it occasionally and, and keep it on a rolling cart, that way you can roll it right in next to the old one, take the plugs out and plug the new one in.
2. Don’t waste time on the small stuff. IT Techs aren’t necessarily mechanically trained. That makes trying to fix a printer time consuming. Don’t waste time on it, partner with a local printer repair specialist and focus on the stuff you are better at.
3. If you must purchase new equipment, keep it consistent. Though it’s tempting to get the latest and greatest, keeping a consistent fleet is easier to manage. Fewer toners and parts to inventory and fewer drivers to update and install is just good common sense.
4. Protect your investments. Keep up with maintenance and problems before they cause down-time. There are many printer management programs that allow you to view printers on the network and know exactly when the maintenance kits need replacement and other vital information. These are often free when you partner with a local MPS provider.
Not all of this made it into the article I contributed to, it was broad-IT based. Learn more on IT World – Quick and easy IT productivity wins