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Seven innovations to look for in your next printer By Justin Doyle, Content Marketing Manager at Xerox

When it’s time to look at a new printer or multifunction device for your office, it’s often obvious. Slow print times, frequent paper jams and lack of network connectivity are easy ways to tell it’s time to pull the plug and invest in a new printer.

Sometimes it’s less obvious:

* Visitors can’t access your printer without giving the receptionist files on a thumb drive;
* Sharing scanned paper documents electronically with peers takes too many steps, and a mix of printers, scanners and mobile phone apps to get done; or
* When a jam or hold-up happens at the printer, there’s only one person in the office who knows how to fix it … and all work stops until they show up with their magic touch.

Believe it or not, the technology on today’s printers solves bigger problems than you might think. Seventy-eight percent of SMEs will have fully adopted cloud computing by 2020, and your office multifunction printer can bridge these new digital information flows with traditional paper-based ones, giving you the agility you need to keep your business moving without making concessions to outdated technology. Leaning on old tech adds complexity when your business is moving forward with new ways to work.

“What is lost today every time your IT infrastructure can’t quickly incorporate a new business process that could give you a competitive edge? That’s what a lack of agility can cost you. I call it the agility tax.” Robin Johnson, former CIO, Dell

When you’re ready to upgrade, look for these seven innovations to keep your work flowing

1. Mobile ready: Give your users easier ways to connect and print, from any device, anywhere at any time. The latest mobile print solutions make printing from any mobile device to any brand of printer efficient and seamless. Whether you’re out of the office, travelling or simply in another part of your building, you can get the job done. Choose a solution as easy as sending an e-mail, taking the mystery and anxiety out of mobile print with flexible solutions that are simple, convenient and secure.

2. Cloud ready: Use multifunction printers that let you scan to and print from cloud services like Microsoft Office 365, Dropbox, and Google Drive. Setting up workflows to the services you already use shortcuts the need to download and print from the desktop. Scan and create text-searchable PDFs through optical character recognition (OCR), so information is never locked in a paper document or image capture.

3. Translation services: Definitely in the category of: “My printer can do what?” your Xerox MFP can provide quick, easy and secure translations of 38 languages at any time and place. Xerox Easy Translator Service utilises state-of-the-art OCR technology that lets you submit data in non-editable formats with the formatting of your original documents intact. C’est magnifique!

4. Priority printing: We’ve all been there; you can’t figure out why your job won’t print, and the machine isn’t jammed when you walk up to it. The culprit may be a print job ahead of you in the queue that isn’t formatted correctly or needs a kind of paper that’s not available. Look for a printer that skips the problem print jobs and keeps printing all other jobs in line. The latest versions of this technology will automatically substitute the closest sized paper and scale it, when a paper that’s not available is requested.

5. Automate and personalise: Your smartphone isn’t really that smart when it’s only loaded with stock apps to let you talk, text and e-mail. Multifunction printers can be personalised with their own apps that make your documents work better for you. Say you need a button on the front panel that automates submitting expense reports? There’s an app for that. Want to add the phone number for toner re-ordering to the front screen? You can do that, too. Personalisation can super-charge your document workflows, and give you significant time back in your day.

6. Colour when you need it: Colour is more expensive than black-and-white printing, but it can make a big impact, especially in the high value customer-materials that will help grow your business, or when communicating big ideas. With Xerox ConnectKey enabled MFPs, you can set permissions to control access to colour printing, by individual, type of document or time.

7. Help and remote administration: On average, 40%-60% of helpdesk calls are print related. You can reduce some of that burden with a printer that has help tools built in. Look for devices that have videos tutorials, and searchable help, right on the front panel. When IT intervention is needed, Xerox ConnectKey MFPs let you remotely login to the front panel of the device, and make changes, without leaving your seat.

What to do next

Giving you the agility you need to keep your business moving is important. But it doesn’t have to be difficult. Find out how Xerox print solutions help small and medium-sized businesses work better. Learn more.