5 reasons why you should bring your large format printing in-house
For decades, we’ve been told that one of the hallmarks of effective business management has been the ability to delegate work to others. But it turns out there are some things that are faster, more cost-effective, and, in many cases, easier to do yourself. Here are 5 reasons why large format printing is one of those tasks.
Quicker quality assurance
Whether you’re producing material for clients or your own organization, ensuring the perfect end result typically means testing multiple design iterations and undertaking many rounds of revision. Hopefully you’re in the habit of taking care of this before sending your files to press. But nobody’s perfect; late-breaking changes are hardly uncommon. And when you have an large format printer in-house, you have the freedom to test your message or design on the fly without having to pay a third-party print shop to re-print them each time.
Better time management
In a broader sense, having your own large format printer means you can print entirely on your own schedule. Many contemporary machines are capable of producing more than a dozen high-quality poster-size prints in an hour: With an LFP in-house and at the ready, you can print quickly to meet rush deadlines, and better prioritize when you have multiple projects on the go. You won’t have to worry about combining jobs in order to get a better rate from an off-site printer, and, again, you’ll no longer be beholden to someone else’s timetable.
More effective cost control
There’s an upfront cost to purchasing a printer for your office, but most data suggest that you’ll save money in the long run. Outsourced print jobs are marked up to cover everything from paper and ink to the rent on the print shop’s space. With an in-house printer you’ll still have to budget for consumables, but you’ll have much more control over what you pay for them. Naturally, you’ll also reap the benefits of never again having to pay delivery or shipping fees.
Less print waste
Printing with your own large format printer not only gives you some control over the cost of consumables like ink and paper, it also gives you control over how they’re consumed. You can save ink, for example, by printing with “draft” settings until you’re at or near the final stages of a project’s workflow. And you’ll save on paper by printing only the quantity you need. There’s no more bulk ordering just to accommodate a traditional vendor’s print-run requirements, and therefore, no more surplus to unnecessarily discard.
This is about more than just being able to print on demand and adapt to tight deadlines. It’s also about the fact that modern large format printers open up myriad opportunities for what you actually print: fine-art reproductions, retail signage, product packaging, architectural drawings, and even custom textile-based prints. And it’s about your printer’s underlying technology: Many LFPs now offer scanning functionality (should you need to create digital copies of marked-up documents, for example), and most are capable of processing jobs through the cloud and/or mobile devices, giving you and your employees the ability to print from anywhere, at any time.