Know Your Total Cost of Ownership
As you hang up the phone, you're engrossed in thought. This offer from a potential vendor, like similar ones before it, was tempting: they'd like to audit all the printers and MFPs in your organization to give you the picture of what you're really spending for printing. Of course, they'll do all this work for free, and of course, they'll make recommendations that will save your organization some serious cash.
You'd really like to know just how much you're spending on print, especially with all those little desktop devices. If you could make some recommendations that would save your organization money—and back up those recommendations with some cold hard facts—that would certainly add to the value that you and your unit provide while making your unit's position a little more secure.
But offers from vendors present issues. They're willing to do this for nothing because those recommendations they're going to make will involve the purchase of some of their new machines. Also, do you really want strangers from a strange organization getting such an intimate look at how your organization operates? And really, how unbiased can an audit be from a firm that wants to use that audit to sell you machines? Don't many of these same companies offer facilities management (FM) services that could put your unit out of work?
You know you could avoid those problems and others like them if you hired someone to do an audit of your printers. There are several capable firms that specialize in that type of work. But that kind of service isn't cheap, and you just don't have the budget to justify something like that right now.
Do it Yourself
Fortunately, there is a third option: you can perform the audit yourself. "Now, wait a minute, Griffin," you might say. "We've got over 200 (500? 1,000?) devices we'd need to evaluate, and I don't have the time or the staff to do all that. And how do we audit a bunch of printers anyway?"
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