- 22 Aug, 2018
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- production print,
If your company prints in high volumes, you may already have production level printing equipment. It’s also possible that you are finding new reasons to print high-volume. It’s pretty obvious that if you print large quantities of brochures, business cards, newsletters, or even financial documents like checks or benefit statements that high-speed is helpful for high volumes.
It comes down to simple math. If you are printing 25,000 prints per month on a 25 page-per-minute machine, it’s one person’s full-time job… assuming you have zero downtime between jobs (which isn’t possible).
There are considerations besides speed when making a decision for an upgrade to a production printer. If it was only speed that was a factor you could add multiple low-end, 25 page-per-minute copiers or printers to accomplish the task. Unfortunately, there are more factors than just speed. Think about the following three questions to decide if upgrading to a production printer (or upgrading to a more powerful one) is right for you.
What Stock Do You Need?
There seem to be as many paper stock options as there are grains of sand on the beach. Each type with a different finish, weight, and behavior. Printing on recycled paper is very different than printing on a high-gloss or coated stock. If you add heavy weight to the mix, it adds yet another variable that your copier or printer has to deal with.
Most small printers and copiers (residential variety or even professional workgroup devices) simply can’t handle a large variety of stock. They can’t have as many online (available) at one time so you’d have to swap stock out as you have different needs. Even if a small printing device is rated for heavier stocks, those heavier stocks take a toll on smaller machines so a production device will be more reliable. And, just because a smaller device can handle the stock today in the dealership’s showroom, it doesn’t mean it will be able to maintain that performance over the years if the volumes are too high for that printer.
Do You Have Volume Spikes?
Most companies don’t have a steady stream of printing needs. Even if you have a quantity requirement that, when doing the math, works on a lower volume printer, if you need that done in a short period of time each month (like over a weekend) then you may consider a production level machine. You might need something that can handle high volumes in that short period of time that is going to be consistent and perform when you need it to perform. We’ve talked about Three Tips to Reducing Copier Downtime before, but if you have spikes in your volume at certain periods of time and a printer too small to handle those spikes, then you will have more downtime than you’d like.
Can You Make a Short-Term Investment for Long-Term Savings?
When you consider the balance of demand and budgets, it can be daunting to know if you are making the right choice. While high-volume, production printers tend to be more expensive in initial investment, they usually have a much lower cost of operation. You will save more than just in the cost of toner and maintenance. You’ll also save on labor costs, downtime, and possible opportunity costs due to downtime. Sometimes going for the lower-cost investment in equipment can cost in much more in the long-run.
It can be difficult to know if upgrading (to) a production printer is the right move. There are so many things to consider. In fact, there is more to consider beyond the three questions we ask above. It might be time to chat with an expert to help you understand your options and make the right choice for your company. Let us know how we can help.