Many offices strive to go paperless or at the very least reduce paper waste. It isn’t just a matter going green either—it can significantly reduce operating costs. High volume printers such as legal offices can go through many reams of paper over the course of a year, resulting in increased operating costs and an organizational nightmare. We have several technology solutions to help you reduce paper waste.
Automatic Duplex Printing – Use it
In the good old days, duplex printing on an average printer meant waiting for the first side to print and then feeding the sheet through the printer again—hopefully with the right side up. Nowadays, many office printers can automatically feed the paper back into themselves for printing on the other side. To take advantage of duplex printing in Microsoft Word and other Office software, select the Print on Both Sides option in the Print menu.
Please note that not all printers support automated duplex printing. Below we’ve compiled a list of the top reviewed printers that come with the feature.
- Brother DCP-L2520DW Wireless Monochrome Multifunction Laser Printer
- Brother HL-L2380DW Wireless Monochrome Multifunction Laser Printer
- Pantum P3255DN Monochrome Laser Printer
Mobile Projectors – Don’t print documents for the road
So you spent the last few hours creating an awesome PowerPoint presentation only discover that your meeting room won’t have a projector. What do you do? Hopefully not print multiple copies of your presentation. Printing a 10 slide presentation for you and 10 participants means at least 110 sheets of paper, not counting any extra you may want in case of additional attendees. Use a mobile projector to facilitate your meetings instead.
All you need is a wall and some control over the lighting and you’re good to go. Some models don’t even require a laptop—just store your PowerPoint file or document on a USB flash drive and connect it to the projector.
Implement a Print Server – Don’t let just anyone print
If you have a network-enabled printer and have it connected directly to your switch or router, you’re missing out on many of the advanced printing features of a print server. While a small office with only one network printer can get away with using built-in printer management features, a large office with multiple printers needs the more advanced features found in a print server.
For instance, you can track paper usage and print queues across your network to find out which users are printing the most. You can then alter their printer permissions or take some administrative action. Windows Server also provides useful features such as permission and priorities under the Printer Management umbrella. If you have the CEO and an Administrative Assistant both attempting to print, priority in the queue can be given to the CEO.
- Microsoft Windows Server Standard 2012 R2 2CPU/2VM – Base License
- Microsoft Windows Server Standard 2008 R2 SP1 64-Bit 1-4 CPU
Maximize and Reduce Margins – Utilize Word
In a study done by Penn State University in 2001, they showed that reducing margins from 1” to 0.75” saved up 45,142 reams of paper in a year. By reducing the size of the margins, you can fit more text onto a sheet of paper. To change the size of margins in Word 2012, go to the Page Layout tab and click the Margins button. There are several present margins to choose from or you can customize your own.
Document Scanners – Reduce the stacks of paperwork
After decreasing day-to-day paper consumption, reduce the amount of paper you already have. Digitize your documents with a document scanner and recycle the old hardcopies. If you choose a model with optical character recognition (OCR), your documents won’t just be flat jpegs. OCR converts printed text into actual digital text that you can edit in a word processor program.
- Fujitsu ScanSnap iX500 Duplex Wi-Fi Color Document Scanner
- Epson GT-S50 Sheet Fed Document Scanner
- Xerox XDM32205M-WU DocuMate 3220 Document Scanner
Technology solutions such as duplex printers and document scanners can make the goal of a paperless office much more attainable. Lower paper consumption not only reduces operating costs, but also clutter in the office. What technologies do you use to reduce paper waste?