Friday, July 30, 2010

Killer Paper The Return: Receipts Contain Chemical Bisphenol A









From the "Be Scared. Be Very, Very Scared" category:

The paper receipts you get from McDonalds, CVS/pharmacy, Walmart and 33 other retailers are tainted with the endocrine-disrupting chemical BPA, which has been the target of nationwide efforts to ban it in food and beverage containers, especially those used by babies and children.

Animal tests show that BPA, a plastics hardener that is also a synthetic estrogen, can cause reproductive and behavioral abnormalities and lower intellectual ability, as well as setting the stage for cancers, obesity, diabetes, asthma and heart disease.

WOW - so those little pieces of thermal paper are going to make me cry more often, act strangely, make dumb decisions and send me out of the store wheezing, short of breath?

Industry Pundit and MPS Pro Ken Stewart Joins Photizo

A friend of DOTC, indeed one of the earliest "connections" I made out here in the MPS Ecosystem, Ken Stewart.

It is a great honor to know this gentleman, and to see one of the MPS Titans receive "just rewards".

Congratulations, Ken. Photizo is fortunate to have you.

----------------------------

Stewart brings channel background, customer experience and MPS leadership

Lexington, KY – July 30, 2010 – Ken Stewart, experienced managed print services professional, founder of industry blog ChangeForge.com, and decorated former Marine, has joined Photizo Group, leading advocate of managed print services research and consulting. In his new role as senior consultant, Stewart will focus on developing education tools, training, and other programs for the reseller channel.

"I am honored to join a team I so greatly respect, and believe this exciting opportunity to be a marriage of like minds and passions. As this industry continues to evolve, I look forward to serving our clients with integrity, intensity and insight as part of Photizo Group," said Stewart.

Tuesday, July 27, 2010

Meritus Ventures Announces Investment in Photizo Group

LONDON, Ky., Jul 27, 2010 (BUSINESS WIRE) -- Meritus Ventures announces investment in Photizo Group, Inc. (Photizo) of Versailles, Kentucky. Photizo, founded in 2004, is a consulting and research firm that provides market information and services to vendors, dealers, and end user communities in the managed print services market.

Managed print services (MPS) is at the intersection of business services and technology, focusing on providing a total printing solution that enables organizations and companies to better manage their print environment through the outsourcing of hardcopy devices, software, supplies, and services. Each year, hundreds of players in the managed print services market attend Photizo's international conferences and purchase Photizo's cutting edge market research and intelligence reports.

Examples of industry players include Hewlett-Packard, Xerox, Cannon, and Ricoh.

Meritus Ventures was the sole investor in the transaction, and Ray Moncrief of Meritus has taken a position on Photizo's board of directors. Photizo has demonstrated an annual revenue growth rate greater than 50% since 2006 and doubled revenue from 2008 to 2009. In addition, the company had positive earnings in 2009 and is on track for increased revenue growth and profitability in 2010.

Friday, July 23, 2010

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

KINDLE DEVICE UNIT SALES ACCELERATE EACH MONTH IN SECOND QUARTER; NEW $189 PRICE RESULTS IN TIPPING POINT FOR GROWTH

SEATTLE-July 19, 2010-(NASDAQ: AMZN)-Millions of people are already reading on Kindles and Kindle is the #1 bestselling item on Amazon.com for two years running.

It's also the most-wished-for, most-gifted, and has the most 5-star reviews of any product on Amazon.com.

Today, Amazon.com announced that Kindle device unit sales accelerated each month in the second quarter-both on a sequential month-over-month basis and on a year-over-year basis.

"We've reached a tipping point with the new price of Kindle-the growth rate of Kindle device unit sales has tripled since we lowered the price from $259 to $189," said Jeff Bezos, Founder and CEO of Amazon.com.

"In addition, even while our hardcover sales continue to grow, the Kindle format has now overtaken the hardcover format. Amazon.com customers now purchase more Kindle books than hardcover books-astonishing when you consider that we've been selling hardcover books for 15 years, and Kindle books for 33 months."

Iron Mountain to Help Hospitals Adopt Electronic Medical Records

BOSTON, Jul 19, 2010 (BUSINESS WIRE) -- Iron Mountain Incorporated (IRM 23.28, -0.22, -0.94%) , the information management company, is combining its services for document scanning, file archiving, data backup and more into one solution for hospitals and healthcare organizations converting hardcopy patient files into an electronic medical record (EMR) system.

The new Iron Mountain EMR Enablement Solution offers healthcare organizations a complete set of tools for digitizing patient records, archiving electronic files, protecting them from disaster, and then destroying outdated records.

Sunday, July 18, 2010

A Case Against Paperless: Your Bank, Your Credit Cards, Your Cell:

Matt Swain at InfoBlog put together a nice little, personal example of why surrending to the marketing pressures, and "turning off" his paper billing, may not be a good thing.

I know all the "big iron" folks have for years watched the clicks tumble as more and more utility and credit card customers decide to recieve bills and statements via email.

Sounds like a good deal, right?

Supply your bank your email addy and expect a bill or reminder to find its way to your inbox.

Friday, July 16, 2010

Friday is FunDay: Katy Perry "California Gurls". You know it !!

You knew this was coming - CaliGirls, all the way.

I may never look at jello, or Candyland the same - ever again.

And whipped cream? Fa-git-bout-it.

One bummer - I have reviewed this work dozens of times and can not find one reference to Managed Print Services, copiers or BPO - odd.

Maybe you can find one...or ...two...

Hope you're having a great summer.



Thursday, July 15, 2010

No Really - NO MORE PAPER. Sixth Sense TED/2009

September 2009 -

Speechless.

This is crazy and you have to check it out.

New ways to read toilet paper labels, people and newspapers - which is weird.

8 minutes.

And the last thing she says, "...maybe, in another ten years, we'll be here with the ultimate Six Sense Brain Implant..." - Good Lord.




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Selling MPS: This is Why Managed Print Services Providers COULD Have an Edge Over IT.

The title of the post grabed my attention:

"Why there should be no such thing as an IT project."

"IT is not an island: CIOs reveal the secrets to successful business projects..."

ANALYSIS

How is it that pure IT projects seem destined to fail, and yet technology is clearly key to business?

Mark Samuels canvasses a group CIOs for their views on what barriers there are to IT project success.

"IT projects never really work," says Mike Day, CIO at fashion designer Tommy Hilfiger. That seems like negative talk from a technology chief but there is sound method in the apparent madness..."-----------------------

Madness? Yes.

I can count more EDM and FaxServer projects that ended up on "eternal roll-out" because of the reasons mentioned in this article - so to finally see somebody within the IT world recognize this, I was taken back.

Well, as you know, MPS is simply Business Process Optimization - say it with me, "MPS is BPO...MPS is BPO...MPS is BPO..."

But as long as we can use our laptops out by the pool, I am fine with IT projects, really, I am.

Tuesday, July 13, 2010

The BBB doesn't Like Office Depot: Takes away Membership and Gives them a "Badge of Shame"

Office Depot is in very hot water, again.

The Better Business Bureau of Southeast Florida has revoked its membership.

Seems you can't be in the BBB with too many government investigations occurring - huh.

An investigation revealed that ODepot allegedly switched local government agencies and nonprof's "from one pricing plan to another without their full understanding or knowledge..."

Let's throw away the key, shall we?

Wow.

It's a Double Dip Recession, Which is really a Depression - Are You Ready To Make an MPS Stand?

7/13/2010

Companies are reporting "better days". IT budgets are loosening up.

But, aren't the copier companies comparing this year's numbers to last years numbers?

And weren't some numbers last year down as much as 62%?

So, like, if I lost 10 machines last year, but sold 1 machine this year, is that good?

Let me ask you this...are you finding it easier to get leasing for your SMB prospects?

Are the business parks just as empty today, as they were this time last year?

Hell, mine out here in SoCali have TUMBLE WEEDS rolling through the parking lots!

I ain't kidding, I've seen this with my own eyes.

How many homes in your neighborhood are still for sale? After a year?

When was the last time your company ADDED to the employee rolls? Additional sales people? Additional service technicians?

How's all that "hope and change" working out for you?

The banks have been "rescued", 2 out of three of the Big Three automakers are no longer American owned, un-enjoyment has gone UP, there are no such things as "green jobs", our debt is now 62% of our GDP, the United States of America has bowed to the Suaidi's and the Chinese.

And France is giving US economic advice.

There is still a hole where the Towers once stood; a Mosque, feet from Ground Zero, will be built before any structure replaces our fallen structures.

And we can't get a copier lease approved for a church in Cleveland.

Huh, ain't this some sh*t?

As MPS providers, we often tout "30% cost reductions..." or "59% equipment reduction and 1000% reduction in your carbon footprint"

Carbon Footprint? Save the trees? Do the trees have bills to pay?

How about saving somebody's job?

Sure, printing and printers are not as sexxy as Quad-Core thing-a-ma-jobs and nifty blade server-things.

And "the Cloud" sounds really cool - Can the cloud save Sally's job in shipping?

Can a quad-core watchma-whosit sell more widgets? Well, ok maybe they can, but that's not important.

Here's where I am going with this - on your report to the CFO, after performing the exhaustive study, are you mentioning how many jobs can be saved by moving to MPS?

In addition to how many trees rescued, how much carbon reduced and how many barbecue propane tanks worth of energy conserved, do you have a column for cube-rat jobs preserved?

Can you figure that one out? Sure you can. Add it to your ROI.

That's right - add "Number of Positions Saved".

Ahhhh...makes you nervous, doesn't it?

I mean, how in the world can you approach this subject with the director of IT? The office manager? The Head of Purchasing, Mr. CPM?

YOU CAN'T.

Sure, the IT Director might find it nifty and pitch the fact that 50 propane tanks will be saved by moving to duplex, but FTE's ? No way.

I know you're asking, "But Mr. DOTC-Dude, how can I find out how much their paying Sally in Shipping?"

"Are you kidding me?" is my reply.

True, you won't find this data by digging through "last years toner spend" with Staples.

And, it is unlikely to jump out at you, reviewing Toshiba copier lease "expiration dates".

How about if you, let's say just for shits and giggles, want to find out how much time and cost is invested by your prospect when processing those incoming shipments of toner from Staples?

I don't know, call me crazy, but do you think you could get a "burden" for a shipping clerk in say, Detroit? (or accounting or HR...)

How cool will it look when you're the only one to propose "saving jobs", when the rest of them, even the "big boys" are still pitching "lowest CPI and lowest TCO"?

Yeah, you can.

I dare you. Double-dog-dare you.






Click to email me.







Monday, July 12, 2010

ACS, A Xerox Company, Helps Michigan Lower Costs, Improve Services

See Your Future, Be Your Future - From "paper food vouchers...to EBT magnetic stripe card..."

I noticed this press release, illustrating, once again, the IT integrators and MSP's will be in "our" space.

And, of course, reminding us all that print is dying.

08/07/2010 15:30

The FINANCIAL -- The State of Michigan’s program that provides Women, Infants, and Children (WIC) benefits is saving more than 25 percent in processing costs by moving from paper-based food vouchers to an electronic benefit transfer (EBT) system provided by Affiliated Computer Services, Inc. (ACS), A Xerox Company (NYSE: XRX).

Michigan’s WIC program provides nutritious foods and nutrition education for approximately half the infants born in the state. Moving to EBT, the state went from issuing more than 10 million paper food vouchers annually to providing recipients with an EBT magnetic stripe card for use at point-of-service terminals at retailers.

Sunday, July 11, 2010

Friday, July 9, 2010

Thursday, July 8, 2010

MPSA Task Force Brings Meaning to Managed Print Services

"Managed print services is the active management and optimization of document output devices and related business processes." - MPSA, 2010

DOTC reflection -

This was a very difficult task. One which Joe and Matt struggle with for months. A task that created a great deal of dynamics within the MPSA Board.

Joe and Matt came through and the board unanimously(yes, including me) approved.

I like that the definition can be applied to both MPS provider and a self-implemented MPS engagement, like Nationwide Insurance.

It's a good base, a solid foundation to build upon. And something easily Incorporated into multiple MPS talk-tracks for your prospects and clients.

Good Form!


PRESS RELEASE:

New MPS definition helps end users and providers standardize services, expectations

Mount Laurel, NJ – July 8, 2010 – As the managed print services juggernaut rolls on to its projected $60 billion market size by 2013, one thing has been missing – a definition of this amazing segment. Just what exactly do we mean by “managed print services”?

Background: The Emergence of Managed Print Services

Over the past 10 years, traditional copier and printer industries have converged, especially with the introduction of multifunction peripherals (MFPs). With the blending of these two hardware-focused industry segments, their products became commoditized. At the same time, users need more help managing their output devices, so a managed services approach to output emerged.

Managed print services (MPS) grew as a business model revolving around servicing end-users’ output needs, not focused on a specific hardware manufacturer. The true MPS provider is a new breed: vendor agnostic and customer focused. Ultimately they are paid for their consulting value, in addition to the tangible products that fulfill the consultation.

Defining a New Business Model

Until now, MPS has gone undefined, but thanks to the efforts of the Managed Print Services Association (MPSA), the market (worth over $25 billion globally) has a focus. According to the MPSA, "Managed print services is the active management and optimization of document output devices and related business processes."

Johan Kosters Elected to Managed Print Services Association Board of Directors

Document industry veteran pledges focus on MPS business benefits for both end users and service providers.

Mount Laurel, NJ – July 1, 2010 – Johan Kosters has been elected to the Managed Print Services Association (MPSA) Board of Directors representing the Independent Consultant segment. MPSA members and current board members took part in the vote.

“On behalf of the MPSA, we are excited to have Johan Kosters participate in a leadership role as a member of the board of directors. It was a tough race among 13 very qualified candidates representing six countries. It demonstrates the international nature of the MPS industry and of MPSA. In fact, over 40 percent of our membership is international,” said MPSA president Jim Fitzpatrick.

On a Balance of Interests

“Managed Print Services will challenge the imaging and printing playing field in the upcoming years. MPS engagements will need to serve dynamic end-user needs for a high performing infrastructure to align their business processes and customer communication. Providers must concentrate on improving customer business processes and creating value through innovative infrastructure and services. As an MPSA board member, I will work to balance the interests of both end users and providers for healthy development of the MPS business,” said Kosters.

Wednesday, July 7, 2010

How To Sell Managed Print Services: A Great Question From LinkedIn

Well, the newbs are coming out, again.

Not to worry, the industry can always use new blood. But I do find the questions and the simplistic pontification tedious and fatiguing.

A new to the MPS World sales rep(I can't call him a MPS Selling Professional yet)asked a great question,

"I sold copiers and printers for a while. I recently got into MPS. No longer am I wasting time on the same accounts.

What tips are out there to be a successful MPS professional. How do we get people excited about MPS???"

Answers:

Tuesday, July 6, 2010

Reading on an iPad, Kindle or good ole Paper: Which is faster?

7/2010

A study has been conducted: What's better to read on, an electronic device or paper?

"Summary:

... people reading long-form text on tablets find higher reading speeds than in the past, but they're still slower than reading print..."

Uh oh...maybe Print Isn't Dead, yet...

This study looked at 32 participants, each reading an article that on average required 17 minutes, 20 seconds to read - a Hemingway short.

The media included an iPad, Kindle, PC monitor and a printed book.

I have cut and pasted right out of the article by, Jakob Nielsen.

"Results: Books Faster Than Tablets

The iPad measured at 6.2% lower reading speed than the printed book, whereas the Kindle measured at 10.7% slower than print. However, the difference between the two devices was not statistically significant because of the data's fairly high variability.

Thus, the only fair conclusion is that we can't say for sure which device offers the fastest reading speed. In any case, the difference would be so small that it wouldn't be a reason to buy one over the other.

But we can say that tablets still haven't beaten the printed book: the difference between Kindle and the book was significant at the p<.01 level, and the difference between iPad and the book was marginally significant at p=.06.

User Satisfaction: iPad Loved, PCs Hated After using each device, we asked users to rate their satisfaction on a 1–7 scale, with 7 being the best score. iPad, Kindle, and the printed book all scored fairly high at 5.8, 5.7, and 5.6, respectively. The PC, however, scored an abysmal 3.6. Most of the users' free-form comments were predictable.

For example, they disliked that the iPad was so heavy and that the Kindle featured less-crisp gray-on-gray letters. People also disliked the lack of true pagination and preferred the way the iPad (actually, the iBook app) indicated the amount of text left in a chapter. Less predictable comments: Users felt that reading the printed book was more relaxing than using electronic devices. And they felt uncomfortable with the PC because it reminded them of work.

This study is promising for the future of e-readers and tablet computers.

We can expect higher-quality screens in the future, as indicated by the recent release of the iPhone 4 with a 326 dpi display. But even the current generation is almost as good as print in formal performance metrics — and actually scores slightly higher in user satisfaction..."

See the study here.

Click to email me.

Monday, July 5, 2010

DOTC's ReCharger2010 Pre-Show Review: Who To See

January 1, 2010, I was given the honor of trying to pull a messed up, terribly run, unprofitable MPS Practice out of the fire - Operation Phoenix.

It is true that I have been involved, writing about, evaluating, talking, being sold and advised on all things MPS. Not only therotically, but in practice.

What I know about MPS is both utilized and enhanced by my "day job" - I talk the talk, and sell the dream.

There is nothing anybody can say to me now, that I haven't heard or recognized about MPS.

For example, I could go back to articles I created almost two years ago, and repost as new, the content is still, if not more, relevant today.

Since the show in May, I have been inundated with many vendor programs, MPS software, assessment training and "How to" webinars/seminars, they are starting to look alike - not just because of plagiarism.

I think I may be the only person in the world who has seen under the hood of both Canon and Ricoh's MDS programs; evaluated PrintAudit, FMAudit, and PrintFleet - two and three times over the past 3 years and utilize some of the best HP tools ever created.

I have witnessed PagePack evolve from version 1.0 to 3.0(there never was a PPack 2.0). I know the difference between Cabon 6 and Axess; CompTIA and Your MPSA - I remember when Great America was simply a "leasing company" and barrister meant "lawyer".

I am on Managed Print Services 'overload'.

Enter, Recharger 2010, next week in Vegas.

For me, what could be better? Vegas, a scant four hour drive, and Managed Print Services - booze, pole dancing BlackJack and output Geeks - Nirvana.

Next week, during the show, I will be out of cell range, off the grid. No laptop, no phone and barely any GPS and no MPS.

Into the Sierra Nevada's - almost 100 miles of 4x4 only trails behind me.

But - I can't leave without a few words regarding the 2010 Recharger Expo.

Sunday, July 4, 2010

The Declaration of Independence and Managed Print Services


You think you got it tough?

What, your manager, the one who can't spell M-P-S, let alone sell it, wants to go on a ride along?

Your funnel isn't up to snuff?

Is it Tuesday and you need to sit in on one, more MPS training/con call?

Is your dealership owner STILL fumbling around with your MPS compensation plan?

Really?

The economy gotcha down?

Poor baby.

Well, tell me this, tough-guy - every time you sign your name, endorsing your paycheck, it feels pretty good, doesn't it?

How about the feeling you get, watching a prospect, turn into a client, scratching his name next to the "X" on one of your agreements?

Nice, isn't it?

Have you ever once, considered that your or your clients' signature, the simple act of writing your name on a piece of paper, would result in your death sentence?

That by acknowledging your beliefs, your ideals, by taking a stand, deciding what is right and what is wrong, and signing "for it", you would be pursued and vilified all over the land, your house taken, your friends killed and in the end, your neck at the end of a rope.

And so it was, that hot July in 1776. 55 men signed their name on a piece of parchment - all knew that if this great endovour failed, they would be publicaly hung, the families ruined and shamed.

And still, they put pen to sheep skin, ink into ideas - changing the world, changing mankind, forever.

Happy Fourth.

Saturday, July 3, 2010

Friday, July 2, 2010

Managed Print Services and the U.S. Revolution: "Aim Small, Miss Small"


July, 2010

A few weeks ago, I was discussing one of my MPS deals with another MPS contemporary.

As he is a resident of the state of Ohio - the heck is a Buckeye, anyway?- I shall not use his real name.

Let's just call him "Joe".

So Joe and I are talking about selling and MPS and copiers and printers and all sorts of output-geek-like subjects when I mention I am just about ready to implement a new MPS Engagement.

Approximately $3800.00 per month.

He asks, "Oh, really? What's you doing?"

"We're setting up automatic supplies fulfillment for his fleet of 200 devices spread out all over the west", I proudly proclaim.

And without missing a beat, Joe responds, "Oh. That's not MPS..."

Before jumping into a "you don't know shit about MPS" rampage, I stopped and considered, "oh god, he's right..."

"...Aim Small, Miss Small..."

What I knew and didn't share with Joe was that this was the first step in a long process - the beginning of Stage 1, Control.

Look at it like this:

When taking on a big MPS challenge, saving your client money, I think we should go after the high-value, high-impact targets - like officers riding on horseback, first.

Start there. Take down the hard cost targets making an immediate impact.

And knowing your goal is to eliminate additional expenses and set your client free, you attack other costs after establishing credibility.

You will need to rely on skills developed through years of turmoil.

And you will have a team. Probably newbies. First-time MPS'ers, children really.

And when things get rolling, you'll need to cover for them, maybe jump out from behind a tree and draw some fire. They will be ok.

You must be bold, it's your only choice. Luck favors the bold.

Moving through your process as easily as you walk through a post conference reception, you continue to take down the costs: getting rid of big, expensive, over capacity copiers, removing slower, small and expensive printers, helping streamline the invoicing process, cutting down the number of prints.

In the midst of all this transition and chaos you, like each and every one of us, will be presented with an ultimate choice. One that looks impossible from the outside, but a situation you have been through before.

This is a defining moment; do you go for a 50% or 55% GP?

Should you review your agreement in detail? Both sides and all 47 clauses?

Without hesitation, you act. The tools so comfortable, they are extensions of yourself. Know Thy Self.

Calculate your risk, take your shot, make it work.

And as you continue, letting the genie out of the bottle, hacking away at all the waste, remember - when you put it down, put it all the way down. Take care of everything.

No prisoners.

It all starts with "Aim Small, Miss Small"

Thursday, July 1, 2010