Regardless of the manufacturer, copiers and printers are available in either black and white or color. Most of the color options can be set to print in black and white only, which provides a significant cost per copy savings with a service agreement but allows the flexibility to print in color when necessary. However, in most cases there is a price to value difference between the two pieces of equipment, so you will want to give some serious thought as to whether having that functionality is worth the investment. If you require color printing, but at a low volume, another option may be to purchase a larger black and white machine and a less expensive desktop color printer.
The number of copies that your company prints per month will determine a few things when purchasing a new copier. If you have a low volume output or it’s for individual use rather than office wide, you will be able to utilize a low volume, slower speed, and less expensive piece of equipment. If you will be using the machine for multiple users or consolidating smaller pieces of equipment, you will want to consider a higher speed multi-function copier, which will avoid print overage charges or excessive wear and tear on the equipment. Either way, it’s very important to get a precise monthly volume count to ensure that any service agreement that you enter into is accurate and that you are only paying for the volume that you’re using.
The simple answer is yes. Poor quality paper is more susceptible to humidity, which can adversely affect your copier. It also contains a higher amount of paper dust, which will cause paper jams, a reduction in image quality, and machine parts to wear out at a faster rate.
In addition, there is a correct way to load the paper into your machine. Since all paper is cut from a roll, it will already have a slight bend to it, so the paper manufacturer marks the packaging to load the paper into the tray the correct way. Following this simple procedure which will reduce issues with paper jams.
Paper size and stock are key components in determining what type of machine is right for you. If you regularly print on oversized or non-traditional paper stocks, make certain to address this with your sales representative because each copier has its own individual capabilities.
Some features come standard with certain copiers, but in other cases, specific features involve a different add-on, such as a finisher, which will most definitely be an additional expense. If you regularly utilize features such as stapling or hole punching on a large volume scale, you will want to make sure that these features are included with your next machine. However, if you are thinking these would just be nice features to have, you definitely want to discuss your options with your sales representative and weigh the expense versus the benefits before making your decision.
If you work in an industry where you are governed by compliance regulations or you maintain sensitive information, you are aware how important it is to protect the information that flows through a multi-function copier. It is imperative that you discuss security requirements with your sales representative to make certain that the copier you are purchasing contains all necessary security features and that they are enabled prior to use.
While you may know exactly what your current requirements are, you should consider the potential for growth prior to the payoff of any financed machine. If you expect to have significant changes to your company size and/or capabilities in the not too distant future, you may want to consider making a choice that incorporates those needs now rather than getting stuck in a situation that might involve purchasing a second piece of equipment, or a significant devaluation of your current copier as the result of a lease buyout or trade-in.
Leasing allows businesses to obtain printers or copiers with low upfront costs and helps preserve credit. Many small businesses have limited access to credit and want to avoid using it whenever possible; leasing equipment is one way to do that. Leasing is also convenient because most equipment providers offer maintenance plans, which can be included in the lease itself or paid for separately. Leasing also provides the ability to upgrade your equipment more frequently.
Companies that want to minimize the amount they pay in interest for goods and services will usually opt for buying over leasing. Service contracts will always be negotiated separately with purchase options.
Having a service contract in place will provide peace of mind that someone will be responsible for fixing your equipment and minimize your down time. They traditionally include maintenance and most parts replacement for a fixed monthly fee based on a cost per copy. This fixed cost provides your financial department with an easy way to predict the expenditure for budgeting purposes.
If you put some thought and a little time into answering these questions, an experienced sales representative from a trusted dealer will be able to provide you with a piece of equipment that is perfectly matched to your needs. Once you have worked together to determine the ideal match, you will then be able to evaluate the most cost-effective way to make the purchase: buy vs. lease. And last, but certainly not least, you should discuss the benefits of adding a service contract, which traditionally includes toner, drums, parts, maintenance and repairs, versus paying for parts and service on an as-needed basis.
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