“The purpose of technology is not to confuse the brain but to serve the body,” said American Writer William Borough, and this should be the case for your multifunction printer. It serves you and your business.
A multifunction printer (MFP) is now a communications tool that will scan, copy, print and sometimes fax, proving more cost-effective than separate devices and useful over a single function printer. Their features continue to expand while often getting faster, more compact, and energy efficient.
However, if the MFP is complex to use (confusing the brain!), expensive for parts and maintenance, unreliable or has inadequate features needed for your business style, it won’t be an asset.
Here’s our advice on selecting the best multifunction printer for your business.
1. Usability and features
John Maeda, was right when he said in The Laws of Simplicity: Design, Technology, Business, Life, "simplicity is about subtracting the obvious and adding the meaningful." In terms of multifunction printers, this means essential functions are standard and easy to use. The advanced features should add value to the user.
For capability, you may want a display screen that allows switching between functions and can multitask simultaneously if the machine is going to be in demand. Investigate the intuitiveness of user interfaces, training requirements if any, and the online help available to troubleshoot before making a call out.
Connectivity is a significant consideration these days. A multifunction printer will connect with your office network and allow everyone to access it from their desktop and PC wirelessly. WiFi direct means you can include phones and tablets into this.
Apps enable the printer to be accessed on the go. Some printers support Cloud access from places like Google Docs, Dropbox, OneDrive. These are all useful features, but establish whether it benefits your business style; and if it does, ask which device types are supported.
Inkjet or Laser
Inkjets are perfect for low volume and medium to high-quality printing. They are easy to use and generally don’t require expensive maintenance or repairs. Printing cartridges can be costly which is why they aren’t suited to high volume printing needs.
A multifunction laser printer is a solid choice for medium quality and high volume printing that doesn't require super-high resolution detail and colour on images, logos.
2. Support, service and repairs
Ask about the supplier's commitment to support, service and repairs as part of the purchase, and things like, what is the number of prints before the brand recommends a service?
All new printers come with a manufacturer warranty. Find out the period and inclusions and exclusions, as they all vary. Reputable printer suppliers will offer some guarantee on refurbished MFPs too.
3. Paper handling
- An Automatic Document Feeder (ADF) is a time-saving feature if you regularly scan documents over 20 pages.
- Duplex printing features help you save paper and are great for booklets, pamphlets and presentation production in house.
- Paper sizes. Need only A4, or sometimes larger? Multipurpose trays that suit A4 and A3 handle this.
- Does the printer host adequate paper, so you aren't continually refilling - essential for busy offices and managing large printing jobs.
4. Energy efficiency
As businesses embed eco-practices and procurement into their strategies, a printer's energy efficiency could contribute to business sustainability aims, in addition to recycling empty toners. Sleep and energy saver modes that automatically connect when the printer isn't in use for a particular time, and energy star ratings, are features to look out for.
To own or to lease, that is the question. Your printer provider will be able to offer you a range of ownership and leasing options that work for your budget. The total cost of ownership will tie in with the service and support provided by your dealer. Ask about repairs and replacement parts, including the regular one–toner. Some machines have more expensive components than others, or are harder to source, leaving you potentially offline.
Multifunction printers can take up substantial space and be difficult to move, so think about where you want it located. Ensure it can be accessed easily for loading paper and installing toner.
Choose Copysonic for intelligent printing solutions
A multifunction printer will be an essential asset in managing company printing and communication costs and increase organisational capabilities if you select the right one.
Multifunction printers are an area that requires expert knowledge. The Copysonic team are the print specialists to contact when you need a printer or copier, or their servicing and repairs.
We sell new and used photocopiers made by reputable brands. We can arrange flexible lease and finance options also. Contact us to discuss finding the best multifunction printer for you today.