Print in the Channel - issue #7


Come together As the pace of digitalisation increases and hybrid working models become the norm, businesses are looking increasingly to have one provider for their print and IT services, which provides opportunities for managed print services providers.

As workplaces continue to evolve post- pandemic, with hybrid working becoming the norm in many businesses, the IT and print infrastructure is becoming increasingly complex, and it is leading some to consider opting for a single provider for both. Research published in 2022 in Quocirca’s managed IT services study revealed that 86% of UK IT decision-makers would consider a single managed service provider (MSP) for IT and print infrastructure. This move is prompting some managed print services (MPS) providers to expand their range of provision to help compete in this evolving market. “There are certainly MSPs that offer managed print, and managed print providers who also offer some simple managed services, such as backup or endpoint security,” says Chris Bates, business unit manager – print and supplies, UK, TD SYNNEX. However, he believes it is not a given that the two will converge, especially at the small- to medium-sized business (SMB) end of the market. “These two broad areas are certainly not mutually exclusive, nor is it a given that they will naturally converge. It is more likely that they will co-exist,” he says. “With respect to print, what most reseller partners are looking for – especially those serving the SMB market – is a simple way to monitor and manage devices for customers, including automated toner replenishment. “Due to its ease of use, we’re finding that our OpenMPS service appeals to partner businesses that are already offering other forms of managed services, and those who have yet to develop this area of their business. Each partner will have their own view and approach on how they want to develop their managed services and managed print services business, and we’d expect those two strands

Chris Bates business unit manager, print and supplies, UK and Ireland

deployed quickly and easily by partners with very little or no real experience of managed services. They can then offer education and enablement for partners that want to build up their managed services practice. “As such, there are not really any barriers to entry – it’s simply a question of what kind of services a partner wants to make available to their customers. Whatever that might be, we can help them develop the capabilities they need.” Wake-up call to providers Dean Harris, sales director at DMC, agrees that the MPS and IT services markets are gradually converging, adding that this shift in the market should act as a wake-up to some MPS providers. “There are a lot of small old- school print providers out there that claim to be a MPS provider, but really do little more than just put software on a machine that collects readings, toner levels and that sort of thing,” he says. “But that’s not MPS; it is a proper managed service that looks at usage, consumption, what’s the most cost-effective

There are certainly “

MSPs that offer managed print, and managed print providers who also offer some simple managed services.

to evolve and grow side by side. “Developing a managed services

proposition can be more of a challenge, but you must start somewhere. Our cloud team has several ‘Click to Run’ offerings that can be


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