Office Administration

How to choose the right photocopier

Written by Karen Chapman

Photocopiers aren’t the most fascinating things to be writing about, but it’s important to select the right one for your business. This essential business procurement needs careful consideration.

Most of today’s photocopiers offer multiple features. These multi-function devices (MFDs) are printer, copier and scanner combined. So before you jump in and make a purchase, be sure to ask yourself the following questions:

  1. What is the expected level of use? Requirements for a home office or remote worker will be far less than those of a large office environment. Do you need a heavy-duty photocopier? Overestimate and you’ll pay more than necessary. Under-estimate and not only will users become frustrated, the machine will be overworked and might even get damaged.
  2. What features do you need? For example, do you need a double-sided (duplex) printing option? Will you require colour copying? How about the ability to sort multi-page documents as they copy, saving yourself the laborious task of sorting them by hand. Perhaps you want to add a finisher that can staple documents together. Photocopiers offer integrated, advanced technology to ease many day-to-day office tasks.
  3. Who will use the device? A home office copier will only be used by a handful of people. Those in a large office will be used by many, so it’s important to have a model that incorporates user privacy and end-data encryption.
  4. What about speed? While most can reproduce at least 20 pages per minute (any less is considered slow), higher-level use will probably handle at least 40 per minute. For very heavy duty needs you should look for a model that can generate more than this.
  5. Do you require MFD ability? Do you want to be able to scan directly from the copier, perhaps print from emails and carry out many different office tasks, rather than solely carry out copying? Today’s MFDs are available for every level of use.

Last, but certainly not least, consider the warranty. “All copiers have parts that need replacing at some point, so be sure to understand what the warranty covers”, advises Advanced Document Solutions

Ask yourself; “are the elements easily available? Can you fit them yourself or will you need an engineer? If the latter, is this included in the warranty? What about lead times if you require a call out?”

For a busy office, an out-of-order copier can be more than an annoyance, it can prevent important work from continuing. This makes same-day call-out services essential should something go wrong with the copier.

A copier, or MFD, can represent a significant outlay, so it’s necessary to get it right. From home use to the largest of office buildings, experts will assess your company’s needs and determine the right copier solution that delivers on requirements.

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About the author


Karen Chapman

Karen Chapman, an expert in printer and photocopier solutions, works at Advanced Document Solutions.