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The global Managed Print Services (MPS) market continues to go from strength to strength, forecasted to rise from $26.18 billion in 2015 to $94.97 billion by 2024. While large enterprises account for the leading share in the overall market, the adoption of MPS by small- and medium-sized businesses continues to rise, as more people realise the benefits that MPS can deliver.

You see, MPS is no longer just about managing a print fleet and its consumables – it’s also about delivering on core business objectives.

To understand fully what Managed Print Services is and how it may help your business today, and into the future, it can be helpful to know more about the evolution of MPS, starting, of course, with where it all began …

Where has MPS come from?

In the past, MPS was solely concentrated on improving the visibility and control of an organisation’s print fleet, with the main goal being to drive down costs, while also relieving the workload on the organisation’s IT department. Its primary focuses were a business’s cost-per-page, and ensuring consumables were always in ready supply.

But as technology evolved and organisations underwent digital transformation, the MPS industry has had to evolve quickly in order to keep up.

What is Managed Print Services now?

While cost-savings remain a key focus, what Managed Print Services is and the value they bring to organisations now extends well beyond this. Today, MPS providers take pains to understand a business as a whole and how it functions, in order to deliver the best outcomes. Here are just some of the benefits businesses today can reap with a MPS.

Advanced document management

The implementation of a MPS typically begins with a detailed audit of an organisation’s document output, allowing the MPS provider to tailor a solution that will streamline processes and optimise workflows, whether that’s by helping with the digitisation of paper documents or automating aspects of document processing. This means businesses are able to access data more readily across the business, in order to gain maximum value from that information.

Improved productivity and efficiency

As well as optimising document management, a MPS factors in other aspects of workflow in order to improve productivity and efficiency while driving down costs, such as ensuring an organisation has an optimum number of devices, and that these devices are optimally positioned in a workplace. A MPS even factors in the speed of multifunction printers and devices (MFPs and MFDs) to help employees get more done in less time.

A MFD also frees employees from having to provide maintenance and support to the print fleet, allowing them to focus their energies on projects that generate more value for the business.

Greater sustainability

These days, companies are highly conscious about their environmental impact. >A MPS helps businesses become more sustainable by reducing waste, providing eco-friendly technologies, and constantly monitoring output so that businesses can continue to meet their sustainability goals in the long term.

Better mobility

With an increasingly mobile workforce, and more businesses adopting bring-your-own-device (BYOD) policies, print fleets have become increasingly complex in order to meet employees’ expectations of flexibility and convenience. A MPS can help businesses adopt a mobile printing solution that is easy for employees to use while providing the security necessary to protect sensitive data.

Increased security

With the advent of data protection laws, such as the Notifiable Data Breaches (NDB) scheme and the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR), businesses are more concerned about data security than ever before – and print fleets are often a key point of vulnerability.

A MPS ensures an organisation’s print fleet is secure and helps businesses implement measures, such as user authentication and secure pull-printing, to protect data from malicious attackers.

What can we expect from Managed Print Services in the future?

As MPS continues to expand to encapsulate more aspects of an organisation’s document management, we can expect to see technological advances that are already impacting other areas of business to begin affecting MPS too.

Artificial intelligence, for instance, is already helping businesses classify and process documents. Large enterprises like PepsiCo are using AI-powered imaging technology to process invoice and credit memos in not just one, but five different languages, vastly reducing the amount of manual data entry required. As this technology continues to progress in leaps and bounds, expect it to become more accurate, more sophisticated, and more affordable for SMBs.

We’ll also likely see more applications utilise technologies like machine learning and cloud computing in data extraction and analytics, helping to vastly improve decision-making and optimise business processes.

MPS will also grow in flexibility as more vendors adopt a software-as-a-service (SaaS) model, in order to provide more advanced services more quickly.

Documents are an organisation’s lifeblood and will continue to be for the foreseeable future. MPS play an increasingly key role in document management, helping organisations to capture data quickly and accurately, and integrate that data seamlessly into processes and workflows. If efficient document management is vital to your business’s success, then perhaps it’s time to consider a MPS.

Managed Print Services is a flexible and scalable print solution that can meet the changing needs of your organisation in the new era of work. To learn how you can reduce your costs, minimise risk, improve your environmental footprint and gain greater control of your print environment, download our Managed Print Services Fact Sheet.