Printing can be a big expense for companies, but it’s one that many organisations don’t track closely enough. By understanding the full cost of printing, you can make better decisions about how and what to print, which can save your organisation money in the long run.

However, with the advent of more sophisticated and cost-effective printing technologies, businesses are starting to take a closer look at their print spending.

Well-run businesses are always looking for ways to reduce costs and improve efficiencies. Typically, photo big-ticket items get the most attention, including stock purchases, salaries, insurance, and motor vehicle expenses. Many other expenses, some of which are not insignificant, are often overlooked.

 One such expense is printing costs, which many businesses simply think of as a minor essential cost. The problem is that very few businesses know how much they are spending.  One way to reduce unnecessary printing is to create a company-wide policy that encourages employees to print only what is necessary and reminds employees of the environmental impact it has on our planet.

It can be tough to get an accurate picture of your organisation's printing costs, but it's also important to understand what you're spending so that you can make informed decisions about where to allocate resources. By taking a holistic view of your printing expenditure, you can find ways to reduce costs and improve efficiency.

There’s a lot to consider when it comes to the cost of print. That’s why it’s important to partner with a company that can provide a comprehensive managed print solution – from assessment and strategy to implementation and ongoing management. Axia Office has been in business for 25 years and have an experienced team on hand to help you with any issues.

There are a number of ways to cut down on print costs, from investing in more efficient printers to implementing print policies that discourage employees from printing unnecessarily.

There are six key elements that make up the cost of printing:

  1. Equipment and maintenance
  2. Consumables
  3. Maintenance and Repair
  4. Networking
  5. Energy use
  6. IT support


1. Equipment and maintenance

Equipment and maintenance costs include the initial purchase price of the printer as well as any regular maintenance or repairs that may be required.

Photocopiers are a necessary business tool, but they can be expensive to maintain. It's important to make sure you have the right type and number of office copiers. Having too many or too few could end up costing you more in the long run.

One way to save money on printing is to choose the right equipment for your needs. If your business mostly prints text-based documents, you don't need a fleet of printers that can produce high-quality colour copies. By choosing the right devices, you can save money on printing costs.

 2. Consumables

Consumables are the materials used to produce printed pages, such as ink or toner cartridges.

Printers can be expensive to operate, especially those that consume a lot of toner or ink. In many offices, regularly buying replacement printer cartridges from the local office supply store is not always efficient or cost-effective. Employees should be mindful of the costs associated with printer use to avoid unnecessary expenses. Single-sided printing, colour printing, and indiscriminate printing can all result in significant extra costs.


 3. Maintenance and Repair

Like any piece of machinery, printers require regular maintenance and occasional repairs. In the case of larger businesses, this is typically the responsibility of the IT department. However, many smaller businesses simply deal with breakdowns when they occur. In these cases, printers are often replaced earlier than they otherwise would have been if they had used a managed print provider like Axia Office. although some offices may have an in-house technician who handles these tasks. Regardless of who is responsible, there needs to be a budget for printer maintenance and repair.

Maintenance and Repair

 4. Networking

For businesses with many employees, it's often necessary to network printers so that everyone can have access to them. This requires additional hardware and software, as well as expertise from the IT department, or a managed print provider like Axia Office. The cost of networking is worthwhile for the increased efficiency it provides.

5. Energy Costs

All office equipment consumes electricity, and printers are no exception.

Some printers use more energy than others, especially older models however, many newer models have features that make them more environmentally friendly, such as energy-saving modes and fast warm-up times.

If you have more printers in your office than you need, your energy costs could be higher than they should be.

IT support

As any office worker can attest, printers are the one piece of equipment most likely to require attention. From paper jams and low ink to difficulties connecting to the right printer, the IT team can often feel like they spend most of their time on printer-related issues and not much time on innovation. The cost of this time can add up quickly, both in terms of the wasted hours spent managing printers and the lost opportunities because IT staff don’t have time to pursue them.

However, there are ways to reduce the amount of time spent on printer support. One way is to make sure that everyone in the office knows how to troubleshoot common printer problems. This includes knowing how to clear a paper jam, change a toner cartridge, and connect to a wireless network.

Another way to reduce printer-related problems is to invest in high-quality printers supported by a comprehensive maintenance program by a managed print manager like Axia Office.   This will free up more time for IT staff to focus on innovation and other important tasks.

 There are two ways to find out how much you are spending on printing.

The easiest way is to ask a professionally managed print service provider like Axia Office, to conduct a thorough assessment of your costs. These are referred to as a Print Audit or a Print Health Check. This will tell you how many pages are printed/copied per month from each print device, the cost per page from each print device, and the total cost per month.

We will also monitor staff behaviour and placement of printers, to identify the strengths and weaknesses of your current fleet and we will take the time to understand your future plans and requirements.

Knowing how much it costs to produce each page from all your devices, can only help you manage your business better. Axia Office offers this service free of charge and obligation because we are confident it will earn us the opportunity to submit to you an Unlimited Print Plan; this plan has no cost per page, no fixed volume — you can print as much as you like.

 Alternatively, you can do it yourself by extracting the following information:

  • Monthly finance charge per device, if any
  • Cost of any devices purchased outright, to calculate depreciation charge
  • Average mono and colour volume per month per device
  • The monthly cost of any service contracts
  • The cost of toner & ink for devices not under contract; is calculated by dividing the cost of cartridges for each device by the number of pages printed from each cartridge
  • Cost of repairs of devices not under contract

Please contact our managed print services team if you wish to take advantage of this service.