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Following the Prime Ministers announcement, this week will see a stream of employees starting to return to work, should it be safe to do so.  Many businesses now need to begin the planning and preparation to ensure they can provide a safe working environment.

Sharing equipment in the workplace has up until to now been common practice, but the risks and stakes are so much higher and precautions must be put in place.  Shared Multi-Functional Devices (MFDs) and printers have the potential to be a hotbed for fingerprints and germ transfer, so changes will need to be made to reduce the risks for users.

With this in mind, here are some areas businesses may need to consider as we move through the next phase of the pandemic:

How do you discourage staff gathering at the device?
MFD’s are a natural meeting point in the office for that friendly catch up with co-workers, however social distancing means this has to be eradicated.  Implementing a print management system with quick user authentication for job retrieval at the device could help, so that all the job settings, etc. are managed at the desktop and users only ever have to go to the MFD to retrieve print jobs.  In addition, also consider if your office set up for social distancing means that your devices may need to be relocated within the office.

How do you minimise the transfer of germs from the control panel?
Control panels on an MFD are a hot bed for fingerprints and germ transfer.  Implementing card readers for job release eradicates the need to touch the control panel to retrieve your prints.   Or perhaps consider implementing a full print management solution, which has additional benefits with access to detailed analytics that would allow you to deploy devices to the right areas of the business according to print volumes and types of documents being printed. Not only does this help to rationalise your print fleet, it can also reduce your print costs.

What if an engineer has to visit our premises?
If your issues cannot be rectified remotely then rest assured our engineers are taking all the necessary precautions to ensure both parties are safe.  When doing any repairs or maintenance to a device onsite our engineers will adhere to social distancing and will clean and disinfect the control panels on every job they attend.

How to decide on the best estate mix/layout moving forward?
With the shifting landscape and uncertainty over the future of how the workplace will look, now is an ideal time to monitor and track how print and documents are used within your business to ensure any future changes are relevant and beneficial.

How can we reduce the amount we are printing?
Solutions such as Document Management Systems and automation of key processes/workflows within your business can help to reduce print volumes significantly. With the current situation it also gives your teams the flexibility to access documents securely, anytime, anywhere, so that your business can remain fully operational even if a large percentage of your teams are working remotely.

How do I manage workers print needs between office and remote working?
Integrated apps can interact with a host of cloud environments to make data and document transfer for both printing and scanning seamless.

 

Are there any daily routines when it comes to devices?
In order to minimise risk and the spread of any germs, ensure the touch panel is disinfected and cleaned at the start and end of each day.

We appreciate that this is an extremely challenging time for businesses trying to put a safe working environment in place for their teams. If you need any advice or guidance our team are on hand to discuss the options and the best route to take.

Posted by ITDS

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