Xerox is looking to small and medium-sized businesses (SMEs) for further growth in managed print services (MPS) and has launched a number of new products to help channel partners meet the needs of this sector.
Using the definition of 5 to 1,000 employees, it has calculated that there are 8 million SMEs in Europe and the US with a combined spend on document technology products and services of $40 billion. This includes printers, supplies, software solutions and managed print services.
To reach this market, Xerox relies on a network of local dealers and resellers, retailers and online merchants. It estimates that 75% of the worldwide office market is served by the indirect channel. In Europe alone, it has 22,000 channel partners in 18 countries, generating $3 billion of annual revenue for the company.
This year, Xerox expects the channel to account for 50% of its technology business revenue. By early 2017, it forecasts that the proportion will have increased to two thirds of revenue as more channel partners deliver workflow services and solutions.
Xerox is the world leader in MPS with a market share of 27.8%, according to IDC, well ahead of its nearest competitors, such as Ricoh (14%), HP (12.4%) and Lexmark (9.2%).
In order to maintain its dominant share, Xerox aims to develop new markets and in particular to grow its share of the SME market, which remains largely untapped and has four times the growth potential of the large enterprise sector (72% of SMEs in the US still don’t have MPS).
Between 2014 and 2018, Xerox expects the SME market for MPS to grow from $14.3 billion to $20.1 billion, as smaller organisations embrace the benefits of MPS, including lower costs, easier printer management, greater productivity, more efficient processes and a smaller carbon footprint. Over the same period, the Large Enterprise MPS market is predicted to grow much more slowly, from $13.1 billion to $14.2 billion.
The challenge Xerox faces is how to adapt its three-stage MPS model for the channel and their SME customers. This includes Assess & Optimise (printer auditing and fleet right-sizing); Secure & Integrate (the introduction of security and mobility solutions); and Automate & Simplify (workflow digitisation and business process optimisation).
To this end, it has just introduced four new tools that will enable channel partners to deliver more sophisticated MPS programmes. Two (i and ii) will help resellers meet the needs of the two thirds of SMEs that don’t yet have MPS, and two (iii and iv) address the requirements of SMEs that want to take an existing MPS to a higher level through workflow optimisation.
i) NewField IT Assessment Tool. Partners enrolled in the Xerox Print Partner Services Programme are being offered a Pro version of the NewField IT Assessment Tool at a significant discount from the open market price. This tool helps a partner create a baseline of an SME’s existing printer estate and document spend and create a roadmap showing how savings of up to 30% can be achieved.
Elizabeth Fox, Xerox vice president, Managed Print Services for SMB, said: “The credibility of a document assessment can double or triple the win rate and it captures new pages – pages that might not actually have ever been a part of what the customer originally asked for help on. For a partner, manually collecting data,merging it into a spreadsheet and making that meaningful for clients is challenging if they are not a specialist. The NewField IT assessment tools turn an Excel spreadsheet of data into a high-end presentation that a management consultant would be proud to deliver.”
ii) Xerox Enhanced Managed Supplies Service. Even well managed fleets may include devices that are not on a cost per page or click contract. For customers that are uncomfortable with a click contract or don’t have access to a click plan, Xerox is introducing the Xerox Enhanced Managed Supplies Service, which Fox describes as “like MPS but with a transactional model”. The just-in-time toner replenishment service enables partners to see when a printer needs new consumables and place an order with a distributor for delivery directly to the customer’s premises. The service doesn’t just cover Xerox devices, but supports all major printer brands.
Mike Feldman, President of Large Enterprise Operations for Xerox Services, said: “One of the things we’ve seen from our competitors is that they focus solely on their products and one of the nice things about our MPS is we recognise it’s a multi-vendor world and our tools will help our partners work in that world and allow them to manage Xerox and non-Xerox devices.”
iii) MPS Application Programming Interface (API). This new Xerox API has a dual function; it improves the integration of Xerox MPS tools into the partner’s systems, and it lets partners integrate their systems with a client’s infrastructure. For example, meter readings could be integrated into a standard billing application or into one that’s developed in-house.
iv) Xerox Digital Alternatives (DA). DA helps SMEs take MPS to the next level by converting everyday processes into digital actions. Xerox analysis shows that there are fie main reasons why people print – to read, share, store, sign and annotate. Digital Alternatives provides digital processes for these actions reducing the need to print and improving collaboration.