In one of the more dramatic scenes in the original Jurassic Park movie, Dr. Ellie Sattler scolds John Hammond about his thoughts on control. “You never had control, that’s the illusion!”
You may have similar thoughts about how to control the costs of your multifunction device. You buy reams of paper. There are boxes of toner stored in multiple places, just in case you run out. You have a service plan to ensure your device works when you need it. You feel like you're in control. Then you get your overage invoice. You exceeded your limit and your budget doesn’t have the room to handle the increased volume. What happened? Who printed so much? When did they use the device? Do you really know?
Your MFP is a necessary tool for your business. And if you have the necessary control measures in place, and your business consultant meets with you regularly to discuss your usage trends and future projections you probably don’t have unexpected overages. But if you have had an overage that felt like T-Rex was chasing you, there are steps you can take to minimize the chances of this scenario in your office.
The easiest step to take control is to enable authentication at your device. This allows you to see just who prints how much. Maybe your power users are in line. But do you know if anyone who has access to your office uses your device without your permission? Authentication at the device will minimize unauthorized usage. Enhanced authentication can be implemented with the use of HID badges if your office uses this technology. Most current MFPs have some sort of basic authentication protocol that can be implemented easily and quickly.
You can further enhance the control of your MFP with the use of software solutions that take authentication to the next level. These programs include detailed reporting options and can even direct print jobs to other devices to take advantage of lower printer costs.
Authentication provides you and to your organization the advantage that gives you the information you need to make informed decisions on how your devices are used. It shatters the illusion that you never had control and puts you in control of your MFP.