Small businesses find greater flexibility security with a new approach to print


Stay agile and build for a stronger digital future by looking beyond traditional printing   

As a small business, it’s important that the technology you invest in pulls its weight. The modern workplace is constantly evolving, shaped by new customer and employee expectations, the onward march of technology, and growing cyber security threats. At the same time, you may be juggling multiple roles and tasks with limited resources and capabilities, impacting your time and effectiveness. All of this can serve as a distraction from what matters most: growing your business. 

In that context, it’s understandable to just want a printing device that works – that will print, scan and copy. But is that really adding value to your business? What about if you could have printers which also enable more flexible working, create streamlined digital document workflows, without having to spend a large upfront cost?  

Adopting a new approach to print enables businesses to optimise their print processes and workflow efficiencies that help improve productivity, increase flexibility, enhance security, and reduce costs. Tailored to the time and resource challenges faced by small businesses, moving to a ‘managed’ contract, also offers a level of predictability and service support usually only accessible to larger organisations. 

What are managed print solutions? 

Like any significant piece of technology in your business, print devices come with their own administrative burden. Someone needs to set it up, arrange support if it breaks, and buy paper, toner and other consumables in good time before they run out. By offering remote device management, print configuration, automatic toner ordering, and intelligent remote support, print providers can do all the hard work for you and package it all up in a renting or leasing contract. That’s what we call ‘managed print’. It means no more running out of toner halfway through printing a crucial document, no more ‘side of desk’ maintenance from someone whose time is better spent on higher value tasks and of course, better control over costs. 

Some solutions go further and can also support your business digitisation efforts by streamlining scanned document processes or automating routine tasks, helping ease the load. By moving print to the cloud, you make sure that documents are accessible to everyone in your team, anywhere, and securely.  

1. Managed print solutions save time

There are never enough hours in the day. By freeing up time so you can focus on what’s more important, managed print is the practical choice for small business owners. 

When it comes to installation and configuration, everything is taken care of by someone who will come onsite to connect the device to the cloud as well as to your internal systems. For regular maintenance, expect no more third-party contractors or offshore call centres, just friendly Ricoh expert in-country support when you need it. Beyond maintenance, you also get intelligent remote support and reporting, generating insight into how your printers are being used so you can reorganise resources to match your needs. And you can choose to add toner, paper and consumables to your contract to get automatic ordering, so you’ll never run out again. 

Small businesses find greater flexibility

2. Effortless migration of your scanned documents to the cloud

As well as reducing the admin burden of device ownership, managed print can help to future-proof your business, digitising documents, and automating processes to improve flexibility, enable new ways of working, and further save time and money. By having access to the latest cloud-enabled devices and applications, documents can be digitised at the source, making information more accessible and ready for collaboration. OCR scanning ‘reads’ your documents, meaning they become editable, searchable, and smaller to store and share, unlocking a host of potential workflows that make doing business easier.  

 Smart print software applications also enable you to set up automated workflows, such as automatically sending all physical invoices or bills to a dedicated Accounts Payable folder or storing bid papers in a compliance folder in the cloud, for instance. Once established these workflows can be developed and enhanced to further streamline time consuming and repetitive processes, freeing your team to focus on more valuable activities. With managed print, you can seamlessly collaborate from anywhere, on any device, while maintaining absolute security. 

Small businesses find greater flexibility

3. Enhanced security

Most small business are unaware of the risk that unprotected edge devices like printers can pose to security. As printers are connected to networks and drives (and used to handle sensitive data), they are often a targeted weak point of access for hackers. Print providers now offer integrated security-enhancement features to protect your infrastructure, maintain data security, and make compliance easier. By using the latest hardware and software, you get peace of mind – plus intelligent remote support and maintenance means devices are patched instantly, significantly narrowing the window of opportunity for cyber-attacks.

Small businesses find greater flexibility

4. Cut and manage costs

Printers can be an expensive but crucial upfront investment for most small businesses. By offering the ability to lease devices rather than purchasing them outright, the cost is cushioned. That move – from CapEx to OpEx on your balance sheet – makes the expense entirely predictable, with the bonus of being able to automatically renew or replace the device with the latest upgrade at the end of the contract, much like your phone contract. It’s also the flexible choice, providing the ability to adapt if your office printing needs change. With managed print you’re not burdened with an expensive asset or locked in by an inflexible, pre-paid contract.

Small businesses find greater flexibility

What makes Ricoh managed print solutions the best choice for small business? 

Ricoh’s Essential Print solutions for small businesses have been designed to respond to the challenges facing the market. We understand that time is short, technology is a crucial investment that needs to pay its way, and that you need more than ‘good enough’ to grow your business. That’s why our solutions enable more productivity, better collaboration and enhanced security. You get all the benefits of a hands-on supportive technology partner but delivered as a cost-effective package. As your digital services provider, we want you free you to achieve more, securely support your people and be more agile and productive. 

Harald List

Harald List

Director EMEA Product & Services Management, Ricoh Europe