MPS: What Makes it Tick?

By Alison Diana  |  Print this article Print

Managed print services keep margins strong and customers front-and-center for VARs, and Xerox and HP have recently both announced new investments in their MPS organizations.

The Make-Up of MPS

Like other services, MPS consists of several components—and revenue opportunities.

"A provider—whether it’s internal or external—doesn’t make their money by providing the hardware anymore. So managed services is really taking over all that which was copier or printer, and telling the user 'You need someone to manage all that outflow.’ It’s drastically different because it’s the totality," said Barganier. "It’s a holistic approach."

That holistic approach includes assessing an organization’s printer and copier arsenal; recommending enhancements; designing and implementing improved networked printer and copier installations; monitoring; break/fix; maintenance, and proactive toner replacement.

Traditional IT providers and copier dealers are vying for MPS contracts, sometimes partnering, sometimes acquiring one another, executives said. VARs have networking expertise and IT know-how; copier businesses understand print. But most experts agreed that printers and copiers, plus supplies, increasingly are becoming the bailiwick of IT departments, and moving farther from office managers and procurement departments’ spheres of influence because of their networking and integration capabilities.

"This really is a race against the copier and printer companies. Our bet is on the IT channel," said HP’s Dunsire. "Solution providers definitely give us that avenue. They’re excited."