Smart Ways to Save on Printing Costs for Earth Day

A few weeks ago we shared an update on our Green Leadership as an Imaging company. Now, for Earth Day in the United States, we'd like to share a few tips for how users can be even more environmentally efficient in their printing.

Think about what happens when you hit print. On the surface, it seems like an insignificant action at a low cost. When you consider that every employee in your organization is hitting print multiple times a day, however, you realize that this one tiny action can represent a significant cost over time — a potentially “unmanaged” cost that, when managed proactively, is a top way to cut IT expenses.

Cutting printing costs will deliver benefits beyond your budget, however. The Dell Imaging Group is committed to continuing leadership in green printing solutions. We develop environmentally conscious products and innovative packaging solutions, and reduce, reuse and recycle through various company-wide programs. By taking steps to save paper, you’ll also be contributing to our efforts to make “being environmentally conscious” easier, more efficient and more cost effective.

Below are 13 easy ways to start.

● Turn on Duplexing
– Use both sides of the paper to reduce paper usage.
– Can’t duplex? Figure out how much you would save per month by reducing paper usage by 40% and see if that would pay for a new duplex-capable printer.
● Turn on Draft Mode (reduce print resolution to 300DPI)
– Average settings are at 600 DPI
– Cuts toner usage in half
● Print multiple pages per sheet
– This works particularly well for PowerPoint presentations where bullets are readable even with a smaller view.
● Consolidate printers
– Individual desktop printers cost 3X on average more per page than workgroup printers.
– Use page tracking software to see how much you could save monthly if everyone in your home shared one printer.
● Control color printer access
– Limit color printing to necessary documents only.
– Activate ColorTrack technology to help manage your color output.
● Turn off color output by default
– Force others to select black and white output unless color is absolutely necessary.
● Since image files use more toner, only essential documents should be printed with images
● Use different fonts
– Century Gothic uses 31% less toner than Arial
– Times Roman – 29% less
– Calibri – 29% less
– Verdana – 8% less
● Preview before you print
– Helps to avoid printing blank pages
● Talk to your family/co-workers about printing costs
– Cost per printed page and how that relates over time
– How much you could save on paper and toner costs
● Train users how to use “Print Selection”
– Only print the items you want from a page and avoid surplus printing
● Encourage the use of “Shrink to Fit” when possible
– Ensures only one thing is printed on a page
● Webpage Printing
– Use Print Selection to select and print only what you want
– Eliminates costly toner usage for banner advertisements We hope these tricks for smart printing prove helpful!

For additional tips, please consider registering for our free webinar series “Controlling Costs in Your Print Environment.” The first webinar in this three-part series will be presented by James Gaskin, author and consultant, on Tuesday, April 24th. Join us and learn ways to proactively control costs and streamline print management for significant savings.

About the Author: Paul Nicholson