3 guidelines for choosing a corporate copier for a large business

A corporate copier is intended for high-volume use in a large business setting. Most corporate copiers are freestanding models that fall into the highest copier output category in the industry: Average monthly copy volumes in a corporate setting can easily surpass 500,000 copies. Copiers may cost from $18,000 to more than $50,000.

Is a corporate copy machine worth the investment?

As the saying goes, you get what you pay for. Understanding your business's exact monthly copy volume will keep you from overspending on a costly corporate copy machine that may exceed your copy needs. Monthly copy volume can be assessed by reviewing paper invoices for your last few monthly billing cycles or checking your current photocopier's meter.

Once this number has been tallied, it's time to compare corporate photocopier price and functionality:

  • An $18,000 Lanier LD360 machine boasts as little as 4.2 seconds for first copy out at 60 ppm. The same machine supports a monthly duty cycle of 300,000 pages with basic features in document imaging, faxing, printing, and scanning.
  • A $39,000 color Canon imageRUNNER 105 offers 2.8 seconds in first copy out time, 105 ppm maximum print speed, and 600,000 pages per month. Built-in features include document imaging, printing, and scanning, as well as saddle-stitch and book copying finishing.
  • A high-end, high-volume, black-and-white laser Toshiba e-STUDIO1355 can cost over $65,000. The machine offers 3.5 seconds in first copy out time, 100 ppm maximum print speed, and more than 1 million pages in monthly copy output. Features include document imaging, printing, and scanning with security protection in hard disk encryption and image overwrite.

With fluctuating prices and varying features, how do you choose the right corporate copier for your business? First and foremost, your monthly copy volume will help you to zero in on the right machine for your office size. Secondly, industry-specific features can be factored into the final purchase decision, like saddle-stitching finishing options used for curriculums in an educational facility.

Narrow it down: 3 corporate copy machine buying guidelines

Before you make a major investment in costly copy equipment, consider these helpful guidelines to hone your selection:

  1. Copier speed. Speed is secondary to photocopier volume, but it still matters. A low-speed machine will slow down daily work processes and could cost a business money. Monthly copy volume at over 500,000 will require copier speed at 80-89 ppm at a minimum.
  2. Color versus black-and-white. If your corporation rarely makes color copies, don't splurge on this unnecessary feature. High-volume color copying for a short-term project can be outsourced to a copy shop to cut costs.
  3. Lease or buy. A number of large businesses consider leasing a corporate copy machine because of cost alone. Leasing may be ideal if you don't have the upfront cash to purchase a multi-thousand dollar copier outright; however, count the cost and consider that a lease will cost more than a brand-new copier in the long run.

Now it's time to put your money where your mouth is. Purchasing a costly corporate photocopy machine may take months of research and consideration. Once you calculate your monthly copy volume and refine your choice based on speed, color copy needs, and lease preference, you're ready to strike.

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