By Ben Simmons
UK businesses are being encouraged to more closely integrate mobile printing strategies into their overall mobility plans.
The advice, from office and imaging specialists, Ricoh, follows a recent study by Quocirca which shows that almost 60 per cent of businesses agree that employees would like to print from mobile devices, yet just 5 per cent of organisations have deployed mobile printing. In addition, less than a quarter were actively investigating options to support mobile workers.
Research by the Economist Intelligence Unit and sponsored by Ricoh also reports that the workplace is set to become even more ‘virtual’ by 2020. 80 per cent of those surveyed predicted this, with almost half (48 per cent) saying the majority of employees will work from home rather than from a traditional company office.
The research shows that consumerisation — where the boundaries between technology used for work and leisure are blurred — will accelerate, with 70 per cent of respondents thinking employees will conduct all their communication and electronic work using just one device. More than half (52 per cent) also predict employees will procure and administer their own devices and applications, rather than the central IT function.
Louella Fernandes, Principle Analyst at Quocirca, says consumerisation is one of the major reasons for businesses to adopt a mobile print strategy: “Organisations that ignore the impact of consumerisation on their print environment can be open to risk, as employees will bypass IT to use alternative consumer printing apps. These solutions may not offer sufficient protection and will also prevent organisations from tracking and controlling print usage.”
Chas Moloney, Director, Ricoh UK adds: “For businesses to remain competitive, it’s crucial they support their employees to work in a more mobile, flexible way. This includes providing employees with the ability to access and print important business documents whether they are in their regular place of work, in another office, or on the move. By adopting a document management strategy that enables employees to maximise knowledge sharing and collaboration, businesses will benefit from real time decision making, meaning they can respond to customer and market needs more quickly and effectively.”
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