Looking For A Managed Print Provider? Buyer Beware

By West McDonald, Vice President of Business Development, Print Audit & Owner, FocusMPS

Looking For A Managed Print Provider? Buyer Beware

Looking For A Managed Print Provider? Buyer Beware; Print Audit, PAE Business, Managed Print Services, Xerox, Canon, perform IT, assessment

If you are a company looking to reduce printing costs and decrease the complexities of managing your fleet of printers and MFPs, you might want to consider working with a partner that offers MPS (Managed Print Services). You might be in an MPS agreement today and feel that it hasn’t really delivered on its promise. So you go onto Google, look up “Managed Print Services” and WHAM, you see a hundred options. Choices galore!
That’s the good news. Now for the bad: Not all MPS providers are created equally. In fact, nothing stops an office equipment dealer or an other provider of printing supplies and equipment from saying they offer MPS, even if they don’t. As a consultant in the imaging industry, I can tell you that many companies that say they offer MPS forgot about the “Managed” part. The world of MPS can be the ultimate example of “Buyer Beware”. You wouldn’t choose your financial advisor or business coach without doing your homework and neither should you with MPS providers. The good ones will save you a lot of money and dramatically improve your experience with office print and copy. The bad ones? It’s best not to find out.

The first thing you should do when seeking out an MPS provider is asked about credentials. Like all industries, good providers will go through rigorous testing and certification processes to make it clear that they have the minimum requirements to deliver on what they promise. Here is a list of some of the best ones in the MPS space to ensure you are only dealing with those that will actually deliver on what they promise:

MPSA-member-badge.png MPSA Member: The MPSA has been around since 2009 and their sole mission is to help office equipment dealers become the best they can at MPS. Members meet regularly to ensure they are doing all they can to be at the top of the game. If somebody says they are doing MPS, they’d better belong to the MPSA.
MPSA-member-badge-transparent.png CompTIA Managed Print Services Trustmark: CompTIA is the largest IT Accreditation organization in the world. They are a non-profit that helps all areas of IT to gain accreditations and trustmarks to prove minimum levels of expertise in claimed areas. The CompTIA Managed Print Trustmark is not easy to attain and you make sure candidates for your MPS business carry it.
SBB_logo_outlines.png SBB Certification: The newest and most advanced way to acquire MPS is through SBB (Seat Based Billing). Instead of paying per page, customers can pay for their print per user. This model has additional ways to save money on printing while giving your company a fixed and budgetable amount per employee per month.

If you ensure that providers carry these 3 trusted certifications you will narrow down the field of MPS-Wanna-Be’s dramatically. Why take unnecessary risks when good MPS providers can be vetted by vigorous industry standards? If you are going to make a change and are ready to let MPS help your organization to reduce print expenses while modernizing your office document workflow we hope these tips will help you narrow the field and avoid costly mistakes.

Now it’s your turn! Are there lessons, both good and bad, that you can add to help customers make better MPS decisions? Are there other industry certifications not listed here that can help others to avoid the pain of a bad decision? Please leave your comments and share this with others you think will find it of benefit!