$440M in Fed Govt Printing Waste: What Lessons You can Learn

Lexmark surveyed federal employees to find out how the federal government prints. Their survey revealed that the government wastes $440 million dollars every year in printing. What’s ironic is that the total printing expenditure is $1.3 billion so roughly 1/3 of the government’s printing is wasted. You can download the full report here.

Although your business is probably never going to spend $1.3 billion dollars on printing, the report’s findings and recommendations are probably something you can learn from.
Some reasons the government gives for printing includes:

???? The document needs a signature

???? Need to review or share documents in meetings

???? Need to share hard copies with others

???? Need to edit documents and prefer hard copies

???? Need to file/save docments

Does this sound a bit like your office?
Another interesting tidbit was that federal employees print much more from their offices than they print at home.
The government’s printing solutions require a lot more than a few bullet points, but some solutions offered in Lexmark’s report include:

Implement Clear Printing Strategy:
Communicate guidelines and enforce standardized federal printing policies within all agencies, specifying when it is appropriate to print and what (if any) jobs may use color printing.
Deploy automatic duplex on all printers.

Convert to Digital Trails:
Consider electronic filing systems and secure digital signatures to help agencies move from paper trails to digital trails.

Hold Employees Accountable:
Use identification cards (PIV, CAC) or assign personal identification codes to all employees to monitor, track, and report employee printing.

Identify Where You Stand:
Determine your printing profile. Visit www.governmentprintingreport.com to learn how you and your agency can print less and save more.

Ramon Ray is the editor and tech evangelist for Smallbiztechnology.com