In an industry that is already undergoing rapid change, a shift in influence is occurring. Traditionally printer/copier manufacturers were the biggest influencers in the market, having the deepest relationship with most end-user organisations. Quocirca’s Global Print 2025 study predicts that service providers — including managed print services (MPS) providers and IT services providers who also offer MPS — are expected to lead that relationship by 2025. The study goes on to predict that the most successful players will be those that are innovative, software-centric and embracing of open partnerships.
Underpinning this shift is the increasingly service-driven economy and constant call for better and better service by the modern customer. While manufacturers remain tied to their product offerings, their resellers are in an excellent position to adopt a services-led approach that meets the modern customer’s ever-growing expectations.
With this in mind, here are four ways to reposition your organisation to become a successful player in the market in the years to come.
1. Expand your service offerings to cater to a bigger audience
Right now the commercial and consumer worlds are blending thanks to the impact of mobility and security, the expectations of the incoming generation of workers, and the shift to selling everything as a service. People everywhere are demanding easier, faster and more reliable access to the things they need.
Print providers are embracing these disruptors and realigning their business focus from hardware to adjacent services and solutions. The demand for print itself to be offered as a service is growing, which is why many print resellers now offer MPS. Others are exploring new requirements for document security, mobility, telecommunications and managed IT. The sector is evolving from just being a print industry into delivering what customers want and need in the workplace.
As a reseller, you’re in a great position to become the key service provider your customers turn to. You already have a strong, proximate relationship with them and a good understanding of their business. Your next step is to focus more on what your customers need to do and how you can help them do it — and build a toolset to match.
2. Enhance your value proposition with software
Software can add value for end-user organisations by improving internal and external collaboration. By enabling your employees, customers and service partners to work together more effectively, you can deliver a fast, effective and transparent service that is more satisfying and profitable for all parties.
For example, service providers who invest in Evatic, Asolvi’s flagship service management solution, are able to maximise machine uptime for customers by centralising, automating and optimising their service chain.
Evatic will streamline communications, expedite service processes, and make the flow of information instant, empowering both your back office staff and field engineers to improve first-time fix rates and enhance customer satisfaction.
Evatic’s ability to process data directly from machines via the Internet of Things (IoT) enables you to offer preventative as well as reactive maintenance, reducing the chance of machine failure.
You also have far better control over costs such as toner wastage and consumption thanks to automated cartridge replacement and invoicing, and enhanced visibility of your service contracts. This enables you to increase your profitability.
3. Become a trusted digital transformation partner
Through digitisation and workflow automation, MPS is recognised as a key enabler and accelerator of digital transformation. According to Quocirca’s Managed Print Services Landscape 2018, MPS is expected to play a “very important” role in digital transformation in the next two years.
Offering MPS has enabled print resellers to demonstrate proven expertise in software and services that underpin the shift from paper to digital initiatives. It is no surprise that by 2025 MPS providers are expected to deliver more strategic value to manufacturers than any other partner.
You can do more to support customers on their digital transformation journey by making greater strides on your own journey. As MPS reaches maturity at the hardware level, the next step is to invest in tools like Evatic that optimise your workflows, eliminating manual and paper-based processes and improving efficiency and service performance. If you can offer your customers an exceptional digital service experience through the technology you use, this will enhance your credibility as THE trusted partner to help them transition to the digital workplace.
4. Collaborate to innovate
The print industry is renowned for its constant innovation. In the past, innovations have targeted the traditional core business of manufacturers and resellers, leading to great advancements in print quality, functionality, cost and energy efficiency.
Now, increasing digitisation in the workplace means that manufacturers and resellers are now looking beyond their core business. They are developing solutions and services that not only increase their relevance in this new environment but help facilitate it. To thrive in 2025, providers must embrace open platforms to expand their offerings, building new technology partnerships and strengthening existing ones. It’s expected that 2025’s print industry will be a much more open ecosystem, with the most innovative players empowered by their collaboration with others.
Close working partnerships with your suppliers will help you capitalise on disruptive trends and technologies like security, mobility and the IoT. They will empower you to innovate, offer new services, adapt faster to market changes, and truly deliver added value to your customers. However, be aware that there is a large amount of proprietary technology at the moment. Until those barriers are broken down, you want to make sure that any technology you invest in today is going to be relevant tomorrow.
Quocirca reports that print industry executives are positive about the future, but that changes are required to make sure business models are strong, resilient and relevant in the coming years.
To become the service provider that customers in 2025 will turn to, look beyond your core business at new ways of meeting workplace needs. Build new partnerships and work extra closely with those partners so that you can deliver more of what your customers want and need. And invest in software that enhances the quality of your service delivery so that you are recognised as a trusted facilitator of workplace change and improvement.
Partnering with Asolvi can help you become the go-to service provider in the future market. We can improve collaboration between your employees, partners and customers by streamlining your workflows and fully integrating your service processes. We can therefore empower you to transform your organisation into the innovative, collaborative and trusted digital partner that you need to be in 2025.
To learn more about how you to thrive in the years to come, contact us as firstname.lastname@example.org today.