16 May 2014 ~ 0 Comments

What does “service” mean to you?

Service DiceAmerica’s economy has evolved into a very heavily service based economy. The goods that are sold are mostly of a similar quality so companies try to differentiate themselves by the level of service or types of services that they offer. The office printer industry is no different. Although there are a number of different printing solutions that you have to choose from, there are many different sources to get those products from. Each of these various supplies offers a variable range of services to answer the needs of your particular environment.

When it comes to printer service and supplies, generally there are four different levels of service that are offered for you to choose from. Today I would like to provide a brief description of these services. Starting with the most comprehensive and thus the most complicated, here are those services.

Managed IT Services – This is a full service solution for all for your IT needs, not just the printers. This solution would be like hiring a full IT department to make all the decisions about what your office needs are, including network, computers and copiers and perhaps even phones, for a set fee. As a company that does not offer any computer services, we have very little experience in this area.

Managed Print Services – This service is similar to the one above except that it only deals with the printers and sometimes the copiers. With this service, all you provide is the paper to print on. Everything else is covered by the service agreement for a set price which is usually based on the number of pages printed. MPS agreements can cost you as little as a penny per page and are sometimes even less for large organizations. The advantage of this method is that you only pay for exactly what you use.

Service Contracts – At this level of service, all the repairs for your equipment are taken care of for a monthly or yearly fee. Think of this like an insurance policy to keep your printers running. Printer cartridges are purchased separately though often from the same vendor. The advantage to a service contract is that the printer repair costs are fixed.

Time and Materials – Finally, there is the old fashioned way of handling you printer needs. When it breaks, you call for a repair and are charged for that individual service. Likewise, cartridges are purchased as needed. The advantage here is that there is no contract to worry about and you maintain full control of all purchase decisions.

Of course there are variations on each of these methods of service, but any type of printer service should fall into one of these four categories. Each has their advantages and there are some disadvantages as well. When it’s time to consider your printer services, it’s probably a good idea to check with more than one provider to be sure that you are getting the best service for the money.

What type of service does your company use? Shoot me an email to tim@aoslaser.com if you have any questions or would like a consultation to help decide what would be best for your situation.

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