The multi-function printer, or MFP, has become an extremely valuable piece of equipment in the modern office. This versatile device eliminates the need for standalone printers, copiers, scanners, and fax machines, saving you space and money while benefiting the environment, as well.
Once you’ve decided to opt for an MFP (or replace your existing unit), the next step is to find the right machine for your organization. However, with so many choices out there, this decision can appear complicated — of all the machines available, which one is best-suited to handle your specific needs?
Selecting the right MFP is important to ensure that you end up with a machine that will meet your business needs, keep up with your workload, and prevent you from overspending on a unit. So how can you be sure to choose the right MFP for your office? Here are some things to consider:
Define Your Needs – Take the time to go over your requirements and determine what you’ll need from an MFP. What will you be using it for, and how often? Will you be working with black and white or color documents? Which is more important to you, the speed and quantity, or the quality of your prints and scans? Which features, bells, and whistles will be beneficial or necessary to your operation?
Evaluate Initial Investment vs. Total Cost of Ownership (TCO) – Consider not only the initial cost of an MFP but the cost of supplies and maintenance over the lifetime of the unit. What may seem like a bargain up front can end up costing you much more over the long run. Also, consider asking your office equipment provider if leasing an MFP might be more cost effective, since sometimes lease agreements include regular service and some supplies.
Learn Your Specs – MFP specifications can seem like a foreign language (DPI, RAM, PPM, etc.). Get to know what these industry specs mean, and what they mean to you. An impressive DPI (dots-per-inch) won’t be a requirement for you if your office will only be scanning documents and forms.
Demand Compatibility – Determine which operating systems are used by your staff and select an MFP that will be compatible. And it is essential you choose a machine that will easily integrate into your existing network.
Seek Expert Advice – If you’re still not sure which MFP is right for your office, ask your local office equipment provider to help you make a good choice. They truly know it all when it comes to these machines, and can also support you with local, reliable service after your MFP is in place.