By Andrew Hall, marketing manager, OKI Systems UK Ltd
Central and local government are continuing to feel the squeeze of austerity with the Conservative administration planning additional savings of £20bn from departmental budget cuts, which will be set out in the autumn spending review. So how can departments make further spending reductions over and above what they have already achieved?
It’s a tough ask, yet while operational overheads have historically been the first area to be scrutinised and where possible minimised – there is still one area of everyday operational activity many departments have not yet fully addressed: the printing and management of documents.
We are starting to witness progress as more departments at least acknowledge printing costs as one of the biggest remaining areas of uncontrolled spending they are responsible for today. That’s why we are seeing growing interest in approaches like managed print services and managed document solutions that drive printing efficiencies, increase productivity and help organisations budget more effectively.
Multifunction printers (MFPs) can and should be a core part of this carefully managed and controlled approach. The latest advances with smart MFPs, in particular, have successfully transformed devices which were primarily printers and copiers of paper pages, to those capable of complete electronic document management processes. As a result, these devices are becoming more central to the workflow of entire departments.
Smart MFPs are network and/or internet ready with a customisable graphical user interface (GUI). They have open embedded platforms and can be programmed to perform functions that are modified to specific requirements (such as addressing specific workflows). These functions can also be driven by server-based software applications.
OKI is in the forefront of delivering these kinds of business efficiencies through its own fleet of high-quality, powerful MFPs.
Its new MC853 smart MFP, which incorporates both A3 and A4 capability, for example, combines the reliability of OKI’s pioneering digital LED print technology with the added functionality and performance of more costly and complex copier-based devices ensuring outstanding print and copy quality as well as comprehensive scan and document management and secure printing. In terms of supporting quality output, this LED functionality is key, helping to deliver sharp, fast and accurate scanning. This capability enables users across government to digitise documents clearly and easily – and users can scan directly to email, USB, network folder, and other destinations, driving further efficiencies within hard-pressed departments.
Moreover, OKI’s smart Extendable Platform (sXP) ensures the MC853 can sit at the heart of any document workflow with a simple to use, customisable 7” colour LCD touch screen that operates the device and all the document functions. Critically too, media flexibility and document handling is made easier. The MC853 can accommodate a wide range of paper weights and sizes and intuitive document management technology is built into the device.
The MC853 also offers low cost of ownership and helps support considerable cost savings throughout its life span, combining exceptional energy efficiency with high capacity toner cartridges and many paper saving functions. Additionally this smart MFP combines 4 devices into one, offering the capability of a printer, fax, copier, and scanner at no extra cost.
That’s unquestionably a key benefit for government departments in this ongoing age of austerity. With cuts likely to continue to bite in the coming years, they will need to keep focused on cost control and driving efficiencies. Printing and document management is one area where departments could make significant savings. By implementing smart MFPs as part of a managed print services approach, government departments can ensure this potential is fully realised.
For more information see www.oki.co.uk
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