Businesses continue to have the wrong idea about copier dealers.
They think we just want to sell a “box” and move on to the next customer. (“Box” is insider jargon for whatever device we're focused on selling or leasing.)
While I'm sure that continues to be the case for some dealers, that's not the case for us.
Of course, we'll still sell or lease to you a copier or printer. We can and will also help you identify how to use the software that comes with today's copiers and additional functionality to get your work done more effectively.
With managed print services, we'll take care of your printers and copiers for you. You pay a cost-per-print charge, we take care of your equipment (your IT department WILL be grateful).
I won't belabor the point. You can read about how we're different here; It's Time to Think Different About Your Copier.
What questions should you ask? Here are seven of the most important.
Are You Locally Owned?
OK, we are locally owned, so we might be a little biased on this one. That said, there ARE real benefits of working with a local dealer who has relationships with more than one manufacturer than a manufacturer-direct dealer.
Every major copier manufacturer has a range of products that can meet most needs. Still, choice is a good thing. The ability to mix and match products from multiple manufacturers into a single solution for our customers helps us tailor our recommendations to your exact business needs.
There's also streamlined decision-making with local dealers. We're in charge of the customer relationship and can sign off on upgrades, repairs, and improvements without first having to check with the manufacturer. This means better, faster service for you.
Do You Understand Data and Information Security?
If it connects to a network, it can be hacked. That includes your copiers and printers. Does your partner provide equipment with hard drive encryption and other security methods? Can they support your IT security infrastructure to keep hackers from exploiting your copiers?
Will You Help Me Improve Business Processes?
Will they suggest how you can take advantage of scanning functionality and software options to automate workflows? Will they provide suggestions for equipment placement to avoid printing and copying bottlenecks in your office?
Will You Take Over/Incorporate My Existing Equipment Into Your Plan?
Copiers do wear out and need to be replaced, but you could only be one year into a new lease or recently invested in new equipment. Ask your partner if they bring in all-new equipment or will leverage your existing print fleet? (FYI, we can, and often do, leverage existing equipment IF it's up to the job.)
What Are Your Support Metrics?
How long does it take to respond to a service request? Can they troubleshoot software issues remotely? Keep in mind that not every maintenance issue is created equal – some do take time to repair. On average, what is their response time and first call resolution rate?
Do You Scale?
Can they ramp up to meet your business needs as your needs grow? Can they meet your needs across a state or only in one city or town?
Can I Talk to an Existing Customer?
A company that can't get an existing customer to vouch for them is one you should be very wary of doing business with.
I encourage you to ask these questions when considering a managed print services strategy with any copier dealer.
If you'd like to ask US these questions, our managed print consultants are ready to answer!