Your office likely has a multi-function printer (MFP), an advanced machine that adds efficiency and convenience by combining the abilities to print, scan, fax, copy, and store documents – all in one unit. But if you think that’s all these machines can do, you’re not realizing their full potential.
While stationary, they can also help your staff work better on the go.
“Even though these machines stay in the office, they can create a more productive, mobile environment for your employees through printing, scanning or collaboration that can be linked to popular web-based or hosted solutions,” says Curtis Verhoff, advanced solutions manager at Blue Technologies, in the September issue of Smart Business Magazine.
“We talk to a lot of small and midsize organizations that have had MFPs on their premises for a long time, but they don’t know these capabilities exist,” he says. “With limited IT resources and staff, they often think these technologies are too expensive or they don’t know where to start. But it’s simple to install these solutions on an MFP and get your workforce, especially millennials, to use this technology.”
With advanced mobility solutions more within reach than you might think, Smart Business Magazine spoke with Verhoff to learn more about how you can take further advantage of your MFP.
Foster ease of collaboration
Do your employees tend to work in silos, particularly those who are frequently working remotely?
Common hosted services such as GoogleDrive, Box, Microsoft OneDrive or Dropbox aim to combat that, making it easier for your staff to work together as a unit through central access to documents – regardless of their location. And these apps can be downloaded to your MFP, not just to your smartphone and computer.
Doing so helps your staff to skip the excess steps it usually takes to scan a document to their own email, go back to their computer to open and save it, rename it, and then upload it to a cloud service to share with others. You can instead scan, rename and upload right from your machine.
“By utilizing your MFP’s feature set or adding a small solution, your employees can scan a document directly to common hosted services… for easy sharing and collaboration,” says Verhoff. “Depending on the manufacturer, it’s often as easy as downloading an app from a marketplace of apps, which is then installed onto the MFP with little or no IT involvement.”
You can also take advantage of the sync in reverse, printing documents directly from the cloud service.
Improve remote employee productivity
The key benefit is that MFP features aren’t just accessible to employees in the office. And with 3.7 million employees now working from home at least half the time, mobility solutions are of critical importance to your company – helping to ensure on-the-go staff are in the loop and on task.
“If employees work remotely while on the road or at home, they can send their print jobs in advance,” says Verhoff. “Then when they walk up to the MFP on Monday morning, it’s just a matter of typing a code or tapping a security card to release those jobs. They also can release print jobs from their tablet or smartphone while in the office.”
Streamlined processes mean boosted productivity and convenience for your team.
“This is helpful to people who travel between offices, as well,” Verhoff says. “They don’t want to print everything and carry it with them, especially if they walk in and find out three more (people) are coming to their meeting. If you need to share with a team, you can print it to a shared location or scan it and share that document with the group’s account.”
Enhance your office with MFP mobility solutions
If your workforce can benefit from increased collaboration and productivity, it’s time to talk with you technology partner about how you can take advantage of mobility solutions, including your MFP’s advanced capabilities.
“You might be surprised at how affordable it can be to go mobile — even if you’re not gearing up your staff with tablets and smartphones,” Verhoff says. “If you’re using laptops and desktops, you can still give people the freedom to be productive and work outside of the office by integrating the features and technology that’s available through your MFP.”
To learn more about promoting mobility within your organization through your MFP, contact a Blue Technologies expert at (216) 271-4800. You can also request a free business assessment by filling out our online request form.