A few decades ago, a printer that didn’t do anything more than print was often acceptable for an office. After all, what more could you expect a printer to do? Nowadays, however, people expect more from their business equipment. You need a machine that can keep up with your fast-paced office, which offers the features and functionalities you need to get work done. If you’re looking to buy business printers in Anchorage, AK, make sure that it includes all of the features to meet your company’s unique needs. In the article below, we’ve outlined the top features we think business owners should look for in a printer.
Before we jump into the more technical features, it’s essential to consider the size of the printer you’re looking at. How much space do you have to dedicate to a printer, and will that model fit where you need it to fit? It’s important to consider how much space the printer itself will take up and ensure there’s space for people to stand beside the machine and use it without obstructing foot traffic. The more compact a printer is, the better—assuming it still provides you with all the functionalities you need.
Ink and Paper Capacity
Constantly replacing ink and toner cartridges and paper reams are irritating and time-consuming. If you’re not footing the bill to have a professional come and replace those cartridges, you’ll have to pay an employee for their time to replace the cartridges and refill the paper tray. Plus, every time paper and ink or toner run out, it can disrupt the workflow and productivity in your office. The less often you have to do this, the better.
So, look for a high-capacity printer that has a tray for a large stack of sheets—or better yet, a double tray—and the ability to print a high number of pages before needing more ink or toner.
Scanning and Copying
You’d be pretty hard-pressed to find a business printer that only prints. Most machines now are a triple threat, providing printing plus scanning and copying capabilities. Despite how common this is nowadays, it’s still important to double-check that you’re looking at a machine that can do all 3—and do them well. Ensure that you’re looking at specs regarding the resolution of scans and copies, so you can feel confident you’ll get high-quality images from that machine. You’ll also want to examine details regarding additional scanning features, like emailing a scan directly from the printer.
Many offices only print in black and white. So, if you’re confident you’ll only want black-and-white text documents printed in your office, you could reasonably skip this part. On the other hand, if you think you might want to print color photos or brochures, look for a printer that can create high-definition, photo-quality color prints. Inkjet printers typically provide better quality on detailed color images; make sure you’re using heavy enough paper to handle the amount of ink that such images require.
It seems like everything these days has Wi-Fi capabilities, and your printer should be no exception. Odds are, most of your office computers are connected to Wi-Fi, so your printer should be connected to this network to make it easier to send print jobs. Wi-Fi connectivity also allows you to take advantage of other features like sending print jobs from your phone or a tablet.
If you’re printing out multi-page packets, taking the time to put each packet together can be exhausting and tedious—and do you want to pay an employee to repeatedly stack pages and staple them together? Modern printers often offer binding options as part of the printer’s functionality.
For example, let’s say that you need to print out 20 copies of your 8-page contract and staple each packet together. You would open the contract document, order 20 copies, and check the box asking the printer to staple each one together. As the printer completes each copy of the 8-page contract, it would feed it quickly through the built-in stapler and combine those pages for you, completing each of the 20 contract packets much more rapidly than you would do by hand.
In an office setting, numerous people will be using the same printer throughout the day. Sometimes, it’s beneficial to have a printer that logs user activity on the machine. This can be important for not only conserving print materials but also for security purposes. For example, let’s say that you discover copies have been made of confidential company documents. You can view the recent print and copy orders within the machine to see who has had an activity that coincides with the information leak.
User log-ins can be restricted to a certain number of pages printed each month in terms of conserving materials. Or, if you don’t want to set a limit, you can check user logs if you feel that print materials have recently started running out at a faster-than-normal rate. You may discover that someone is printing personal items on the company printer and can establish a policy limiting this excessive printing to keep your company’s printing costs lower.
Of course, you should always consider the value that you’re getting from any piece of office equipment that you purchase. It’s always good to go with a trusted printer brand like HP, Canon, Sharp, or Toshiba. However, you should also be aware that every brand has low-end models to appeal to tighter budgets. But low cost doesn’t always equate to a high value for your business. It would help if you found a model that will truly meet your needs, save you time, and contribute to business productivity to get the highest value out of your investment.
For help finding a business printer for a business in Anchorage, AK, contact Arctic Office Products today.