There are many printers to choose from. This is why the printer market is characterised mainly by small and medium sized businesses. Even the larger companies in the industry rarely have an annual turnover of more €10 million. When it comes to projects that involve tenders of €100,000 or more, this is why there is hardly any printing house that that will not make a great effort to win the order.
Savings potential: the printer to match your print portfolio
In practice companies often get quotes from three or four printers and then make their choice based on the most favourable rate. This way of doing things results in a few per cent in savings for most companies. However, they will rarely achieve double-digit savings with this method. The savings become really substantial when companies have a good overview of the market and find the printer that matches their print portfolio precisely. Especially when printing involves special formats and requirements there are often only a few printers that can provide everything in-house. If you can find them, you can lower your costs significantly. If companies only have standard print materials, web platforms may also be a viable approach.
Marketing as the major stakeholder in the business
The marketing department produces as well as orders the great majority of printed material. However, marketing people are not accountants or buyers. For this reason it may be worthwhile for purchasing to lend support to marketing if there is a large volume of orders. However, printed items also fall outside of marketing’s remit. With many products in the consumer goods market particularly, operating instructions are printed, for example. And in larger enterprises and corporations especially, significant costs are incurred for business stationery such as letterheads, business cards, envelopes, etc.
The problem of maverick buying
Even if businesses are able to negotiate favourable rates, many of them forfeit their positive starting position by what is known as maverick buying. Sometimes different departments in the same company purchase items independently of each other from the same provider at different prices. In order to achieve sustainable printing costs, the first step has to be to create transparency in this sector. Invoices need to be gathered together and analysed and on this basis and ordering patterns the right service provider should be found. When evaluating tenders, it is important to choose objectively. Particularly in marketing, longstanding relationships with an existing printer are maintained, nurtured and safeguarded. Obtaining quotes and calling for tenders are not done regularly, if at all, and often not conducted consistently. To introduce and implement changes with a lasting effect on costs, it may be advisable to seek assistance from outside the company. External specialists are unencumbered by corporate policy and can usually make and argue for more objective decisions.