Boosting Business Sustainability: A Guide to Eco-Friendly Managed Print Services


Alexander Watson

Boosting Business Sustainability: A Guide to Eco-Friendly Managed Print Services

As a seasoned tech enthusiast, I’ve observed a significant shift in the printing industry. It’s not just about producing high-quality prints anymore; it’s about doing so responsibly. Welcome to the world of eco-friendly managed print services – a game-changer in the realm of sustainable business practices.

This innovative approach combines the efficiency of managed print services with an eco-conscious mindset. It’s a win-win solution for businesses looking to cut costs and reduce their environmental footprint. In this article, we’ll delve into the heart of eco-friendly managed print services, exploring its benefits and how it’s reshaping businesses. So, if you’re keen on making your office a little greener, you’re in the right place.

Understanding Eco-Friendly Managed Print Services

What Are Managed Print Services?

Managed Print Services (MPS) provide a bridging solution for companies of all sizes, grappling with document production challenges. These services streamline all your printing needs into one cohesive strategy, ensuring efficacy, and eliminating wastage. Partnering with a managed print service provider comes with advantages. They take responsibility not only for hardware maintenance but also for providing supplies such as toner and paper, delivering better budget predictability.

Instead of bearing the daily hassles and costs related to managing in-house printing needs, many businesses turn to MPS. According to Quocirca’s Managed Print Services Landscape report, 76% of organizations contract managed print services for reduced printing costs and simplified print management.

The Importance of Eco-Friendly Practices

The concept of eco-friendly managed print services extends the benefits of traditional MPS. They address not only efficiency but also environmental conservation. As the name suggests, eco-friendly practices take the lead in ensuring printing occurs, keeping the environmental impact in check. Paper conservation, reduced energy use, and recycling initiatives are some of the practices that mark the shift towards eco-friendliness in printing.

A 2017 International Data Corporation survey showed that sustainability is a high priority among 50% of businesses when considering MPS providers, reflecting a meaningful move towards environmental consciousness.

With the dual benefit of enhanced efficiency and a significant reduction in environmental footprint, eco-friendly managed print services mark a transformative approach to business practice. They contribute to maintaining our planet’s health while allowing businesses to flourish without compromising on quality or cost-effectiveness. No doubt, these services signify an exciting juncture in the corporate journey towards sustainable practice.

Key Benefits of Eco-Friendly Managed Print Services

Beneath the surface, eco-friendly managed print services offer substantial benefits. Not simply for the eco-conscious, these services promise cost savings, efficiency, and enhanced sustainability reporting. Dive deeper to understand these advantages.

Reducing Environmental Impact

Eco-friendly managed print services focus on slashing environmental harm. Increased emphasis on digital workflows means less paper in play, reducing deforestation rates. By limiting the usage of printers and copiers, these services also lower energy consumption. For example, consider a company that chooses to go digital, shrinks its use of paper drastically – let’s say by 60%. Imagine this company was using 1000 reams of paper annually. They’ve now cut that down to 400 reams. That’s a tangible decrease, demonstrating the power of eco-friendly MPS to bolster green efforts.

Cost Savings and Efficiency

Shrinking the environmental footprint isn’t the sole perk. Eco-friendly MPS potentially cut costs and improve efficiency. Companies cut costs on paper, ink, and service repairs by reducing their dependency on traditional printers. Here’s where digital workflows come into play again. Digital workflow integration means quicker data accessibility and enhanced productivity, fueling faster service and operational efficiency. Let’s take a company that manages to digitize 70% of their paper-based processes. This transition could result in substantial savings and rapid work processes, signifying the two-fold benefits of eco-friendly MPS.

Improved Sustainability Reporting

Eco-friendly managed print services come with an unanticipated advantage: Improved sustainability reporting. Companies increasingly report their environmental efforts as social responsibility is a hot-button topic. This reporting attracts environmentally conscious consumers and builds brand reputation. Trimming printing and paper waste becomes an integral report element. Relate it to a company that cuts paper usage by a chunky 50%. Their sustainability report mirrors this advancement, portraying their dedication to environmental sustainability. Hence, eco-friendly MPS indirectly enhances a company’s appeal and reputation.

Components of an Eco-Friendly Print Strategy

For an eco-friendly print strategy, we need to discuss several components that contribute to its effectiveness. These components mainly fall under three categories: energy-efficient printers and devices, responsible ink and toner usage, and paper waste reduction techniques.

Energy-Efficient Printers and Devices

Printer selection plays a pivotal role in shaping the environmental footprint of an office’s print activities. Deploying Energy Star-certified printers and multifunction devices (MFDs), for instance, supplements eco-friendly print tactics. These devices conserve electricity consumption by entering sleep mode during idle periods, effectively curbing energy waste. Moreover, the latest models often impress with advanced features such as two-sided (duplex) printing and secure pull printing that further augment environmental conservation efforts.

Responsible Ink and Toner Usage

Ink and toner consumption sway significantly in the overall environmental impact of printing operations. Opting for remanufactured or refilled cartridges directly slashes the carbon footprint. These cartridges undergo reprocessing, thus reducing waste and conserving resources that would otherwise be used to produce new units. Companies may also consider solid ink technology that generates 90% less waste compared to traditional cartridges, symbolizing another effective step towards a greener print strategy.

Paper Waste Reduction Techniques

Paper conservation acts as the cornerstone of an eco-friendly print approach. Techniques like duplex printing, pull printing, and digitizing documents spotlight significant paper waste reduction capabilities. Duplex printing, employing both sides of paper, curtails paper usage by up to 50%. Pull printing guards against unnecessary prints by mandating user authentication before print job release. Lastly, digitizing documents and implementing digital workflows eliminates the need for physical copies altogether, delivering substantial paper savings. Also, integrating paper monitoring software helps in tracking paper usage, fostering continuous improvements in paper conservation.

Implementation Tips for Green Printing

Establishing eco-friendly printing practices involves more than just using Energy Star-certified printers or recycling paper. Let’s delve deeper into some effective strategies that aid in the implementation of green printing.

Conducting a Print Assessment

First and foremost, understanding the current print environment is a necessary step. By conducting a print assessment, I gather information about the number of devices in operation, their types, and their usage patterns.

An effective evaluation includes quantifying the amount of paper used, ink consumed, and energy expended. This assessment lays down a solid foundation to formulate a bespoke and comprehensive green printing strategy.

Educating Employees on Green Practices

Next, fostering a green culture within the organization is pivotal. It’s all about encouraging employees to adopt eco-friendly behaviors.

Illustrate to them the significant environmental impact of print waste and educate them regarding the merits of green practices such as responsible paper usage. Methods like printing on both sides of paper (duplex printing) or reusing single-sided printed papers for drafts can lead to significant savings, cutting costs and conserving resources.

Moreover, a culture that promotes digitizing documents, rather than relying on hard copies, contributes greatly to green initiatives.

Streamlining Printing Processes

Finally, incorporation of streamlined and digital workflows is a facilitator in the transition to green printing.

Consider automated print solutions which hold a print job until an authorized user releases it. This reduces print wastage due to accidental printing or unclaimed documents.

Plus, evolving to digital document management systems can drastically reduce the reliance on paper, while also improving efficiency.

In short, the implementation of green printing requires comprehensive understanding, effective employee education, and the adoption of smart, eco-friendly practices. Always remember, small steps lead to big changes in the journey towards a more sustainable business operation.

Case Studies: Success Stories of Eco-Friendly Printing

Large Corporations Leading the Way

Large corporations recognize the impact of eco-friendly managed print services (MPS) on the environment and their bottom line. Consider the example of Xerox, a printing giant that embraced sustainable printing. Xerox’s focus on MPS cut paper consumption by 20%, conserving plenty of natural resources. Moreover, their intelligent use of power management settings on printers yielded a 30% reduction in energy usage. Indeed, large enterprises showcase impressive potential when it comes to implementing eco-friendly MPS.

Another big player, HP, illustrates robust commitment to green printing. HP’s Instant Ink program emphasizes using cartridges made from recycled materials. They’ve achieved a 67% usage of recycled plastics in the manufacturing of their cartridges, dramatically reducing resource consumption and waste.

Small Businesses Making Big Changes

But it’s not just the big corporations that are making waves. Small businesses, too, embody significant shifts towards eco-friendly printing. Little Green Printing, a print shop based in Colorado, places sustainability at the core of their operations. They utilize recycled papers and vegetable-based inks in printing. The shop also runs on wind power, underlining their commitment to environmental responsibility.

Similarly, Greenerprinter, a California-based printing company, integrated an ambitious tree planting program. For every order placed, they plant a tree. Additionally, they use only 100% post-consumer waste (PCW) recycled paper for their products, reinforcing their resolve towards minimizing environmental impact. Small businesses like these showcase how sustainable practices in the printing industry aren’t just beneficial; they’re achievable, too.

Choosing the Right Service Provider

When it comes to eco-friendly managed print services, the selection of the provider plays a crucial role in determining the success of sustainability efforts. Let’s dive deeper into what to consider when choosing an MPS provider and important certifications to keep an eye out for.

What to Look for in a Provider

In selecting an MPS provider, I first consider their commitment to green practices. They ought to demonstrate this commitment through their products, services, and operations. For instance, providers like Xerox and HP have comprehensive recycling programs for their cartridges, toner, and equipment.

Second, their ability to offer customized solutions to meet specific business needs is crucial. A one-size-fits-all approach doesn’t work in a diverse business landscape with unique requirements. Little Green Printing, for example, provides custom print solutions tailored to the sustainability needs of each client.

Finally, I assess their capacity for continuous support and services. The availability of technical support, regular maintenance, and constant software updates ensures seamless print operations and a reduced impact on the environment.

Certifications and Standards to Consider

When evaluating potential MPS providers, it’s essential to consider their adherence to recognized environmental certifications and standards. Let me share a few of the most noteworthy:

Energy Star, a program run by the EPA, recognizes products and services that save energy without sacrificing performance. An MPS provider boasting an Energy Star certification is a good sign of energy-efficient practices.

The FSC (Forest Stewardship Council) Certification is another essential criterion, particularly concerning paper sourcing. If an MPS provider holds an FSC certification, it means they use paper sourced from responsibly managed forests.

Investing in an MPS provider complying with these certifications can promote your business sustainability efforts and allow you to make a tangible contribution to environmental conservation.


So there you have it. Eco-friendly managed print services are not just a trend, they’re a game-changer in the business world. Companies big and small are reaping the benefits of MPS, from cost savings to improved efficiency and sustainability. But remember, it’s not just about picking any provider. It’s crucial to find one who’s committed to green practices, offers tailored solutions, and provides ongoing support. Look for Energy Star and FSC certifications to ensure you’re making a truly eco-conscious choice. By going green with your print services, you’re not just doing good business, you’re doing good for our planet. And that’s a win-win situation.

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