How to Tell When Your Office Needs a New Printer

by Rich on December 16, 2009


Maybe you’ve had the same printer since you started your business—but times change. Even if your printer still runs well, it may be time to upgrade it—and it may be better for your business if you do. Here are a few signs to look for to know when it’s time to get a new printer for your office.


Your printing needs change. Maybe at first you were only printing out the occasional invoice. But now you’ve got a bigger company, and you’re printing company brochures, employee newsletters, and other graphics-heavy documents on your printer.  If that’s the case, you may need a printer that handles colour printing on cardstock and glossy paper better than the one you have now. Or maybe you’d like to be able to print out proposals on your office printer—but continually printing out documents over a hundred pages long on that slow machine would hold up everyone else’s work. If that’s the case, you may need a fast laser printer instead of that slow Inkjet.

Your employees are getting frustrated. Every printer has the occasional paper jam. But are your employees always complaining about the printer? If your printer has employees standing nervously by to load each sheet in the tray manually to prevent a paper jam—or digging into the machine’s innards on every print job to fish out bits of paper—chances are your printer is on its last legs.

broken Printer

You need to connect more employees to the printer. Not every printer can handle heavy networking demands. It may be that your office is growing to the point that your printer can’t handle being networked to the increased number of computers you’ve got. If that’s the case, don’t hold onto that printer for sentimental or budgetary reasons; get a new one that can handle your office’s demands.

You’re having trouble finding the ink. You know your printer is a bit too old when you can no longer easily find the right brand of ink and toner for your model. If you’re continually going from store to store to find the right ink and toner cartridges for your printer—or if your favorite third-party printer ink company doesn’t carry that model anymore—it may be time to upgrade your printer.

Your company is growing. Your printer may have been perfect when your business was just you and your laptop. But now that you have other employees, you may need a printer you can network to multiple different computers. Shop around for a printer designed for office use, and you should be able to find one that will be a better fit for your growing business.

Shaking Hands

You’re running out of ink faster than you did. If you’re printing more than you used to at the office, it could be that you need a more ink-efficient printer. If you are continually running out of ink and your budget for ink and toner has gone up significantly, this is definitely the case—especially if you bought your first printer because it was cheap, not necessarily because it was cost-efficient to use over the long term. If ink is costing you a lot of money, look into a more cost-efficient machine—one that doesn’t use as much ink as your current printer.

There are better models out there. If you’ve had your printer for longer than two or three years, chances are there’s a model out there that works better, networks more smoothly, prints faster, uses less ink and has less expensive cartridges. Technology can improve significantly over the span of a few years, and a new printer may be able to save you a lot of money on ink—and give you better, faster printouts as well.

Even if your printer isn’t malfunctioning, it may still be obsolete.  And if it isn’t working as well as it did, don’t frustrate your employees by making them deal with frequent paper jams and malfunctions every day. Above all, don’t hang on to an outdated printer—you could be wasting money and time. Instead, check your office supply stores for an office printer that can do everything you need it to do—in less time, and using less ink.

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