How Managed Print Services Can Save You Money

Managed Print Services ProductivityThe typical office spends thousands of dollars each year on printing, copying, faxing and filing documents. Are your resources being used efficiently? A print assessment by Graphic Enterprises’ Managed Print Services department can help you identify areas of improvement that could result in sizable monetary savings.

Managed Print Services Specialist Noelle Frank has a knack for understanding client needs and suggesting the best way to manage a company’s printer costs and maintenance. She has helped multiple businesses in Canton, Akron, Youngstown and Western Pennsylvania attain a better perspective of their printing needs—and saved them money in the process. Here is how. Read more

What is the Cloud and What Does it Have to Do With My Copier?

You have probably heard people talk about “the cloud” or moving their business files to the cloud. But what exactly is cloud computing? And how in the world does it have anything to do with my office copier?

What Is the Cloud?

cloud computing diagram

The best place to start in beginning to understand the cloud is the use of a mainframe computer “back in the day.” In the early days of computers, mainframe machines could easily take up an entire room and were cost prohibitive for businesses to own. Businesses would share use of a mainframe computer off-site. This is the earliest use of the cloud concept. The cloud is basically a group of servers used to store data or run software located off-site through an internet or data connection.

With the increasing use and development of mobile technology, cloud computing has taken center stage. Cloud computing runs software applications such as social media websites, Google Drive, Dropbox and Evernote. The images and documents you upload to these websites aren’t stored locally on your computer or network, but rather on servers in data centers. These servers in data centers around the world make up “the cloud.”

Adobe recently discontinued offering its Creative Suite software (Photoshop, Illustrator, etc.) as a local install. You now pay a monthly fee and access the software through an internet or data connection. Other traditional software companies are looking toward moving their software to the cloud as well.

What Does the Cloud Have to Do With My Office Copier?

Now that you have a better understanding of what the cloud is, you are probably wondering how in the heck it has anything to do with your office copier. Quite simply, the cloud can make your team and office more productive and efficient.

Konica Minolta has been on top of the cloud-computing trend, giving its multi-function printers and copiers the ability to tap into this powerful new computing option. The bizhub has many features available to integrate with cloud-computing applications and software such as Google Drive and Evernote.

Google Drive is becoming an increasingly popular tool among businesses for easy access and sharing of documents. For instance, you have a sales representative out in the field. He opens a new document in Google Drive on his iPad and takes notes during his meeting with the client on service issues they are having. When he returns to the office, he wants to print these notes immediately to discuss them with the service department. He can go directly to the bizhub multi-function printer, access the Google Drive document from the control pad and print out the notes for his meeting with the service department manager.

In an education setting, the copier or printer may be located far from a teacher’s classroom. Instead of running back to their classroom to hit print on their computer, a teacher could access his or her document directly from the multi-function printer and print. This saves the teacher time and is more efficient.

Wondering how cloud integration could help your business become more efficient and productive? If you are located in the Canton, Akron, Youngstown or Western Pennsylvania areas, contact us. We would love to help!

3 Features You May Not Realize Are Available on Your Copier

Extra ExtraThe number of functions and features available on Konica Minolta multi-function printers and copiers is astounding. In fact, we find that there are so many options available that often businesses are not always aware of everything their printer/copier can do. There are features that you may not be aware of that could be saving you time and increasing office productivity.

In this post, Chip Reihl, our general manager of sales, enlightens us on three features you can start taking advantage of at your office.

1.Mobile Printing App

As the workforce becomes more mobile, so are multi-function printers and copiers. No, the actual machine is not small enough to fit in a briefcase or purse—yet! You can take your printer or copier “with you” with the PageScope Mobile application for iPad, iPhone and Android devices. The app gives you the ability to use your mobile device to print, scan and view documents. You can learn more about the app and how to set it up in this previous blog post about PageScope Mobile.

2. Secure Print

Does your office print and copy confidential or private documents? Prevent unwanted eyes from looking at these documents with secure print. You can send the document to your Konica Minolta printer or copier and have it held confidentially until you are standing at the machine. A confidential code can then be entered at the multi-function printer to release the document and begin printing.

3. New Scan Formats

The newest color multi-function printer units offer advanced scanning capabilities. Have you ever received a paper document from someone that you wished you could edit? Up until this point, it required retyping the document to make your changes. With the new scan formats available from Konica Minolta, you are able to scan your document and convert to a Microsoft Word or Excel document ready for editing. You can also scan to MS Power Point and make instant slides for a presentation.

Have you used any of these features at your office? Let us know how they have helped improve your productivity in the comments section below.

Interested in learning more about how the features of Konica Minolta multi-function printers can improve your office processes? If you are a business owner in Canton, Akron, Youngstown or Western Pennsylvania, contact us.

Educational Lunch Event Focuses on Mobile App Convenience

Wireless PrintingOur Learn-At-Lunch Series continues to be both successful and beneficial to the many participants from area Canton and Akron businesses. At our most recent event, attendees enjoyed a terrific lunch and learned how to print from their Android-based devices to compatible Konica Minolta bizhub multi-function printers.

The PageScope Mobile app came as a direct response to the increasing use of mobile devices by office workers. The convenience factor with this app cannot be emphasized enough! What could be easier than printing wirelessly from your smartphone or tablet? PageScope Mobile, which is also available for Apple® mobile devices, really does make everyday document imaging tools more easily accessible for today’s busy office. In fact, the Android version of PageScope allows you to:

  • Print photos saved on an Android device
  • Receive scanned data from a bizhub MFP using Scan-to-WebDAV or WS Scan
  • Receive data from a bizhub MFP using Scan-to-Email
  • View or print received data
  • View or print web pages
  • Print images taken by the camera available on the Android device

Finally, the price cannot be beat—free from the Google Play Store. We wrapped up our most recent session with an overview of the Sharp AQUOS BOARD, an interactive large-screen display that provides even more options when connected to a multi-function printer. Simply scan a document with your MFP and import the image to the display. Use the AQUOS display to write directly on the image, save it to a PC and print the marked-up data from the MFP. Great for collaboration during meetings.

While you may have missed some great information—and a complimentary lunch!—you can still sign up to attend one our upcoming sessions. You are sure to walk away with some great tips for increased productivity. Check out our Learn-At-Lunch Series for Summer 2013:

  • June 12, Production Printing. Learn more about the new equipment and technology in the print production world, featuring color management, production and wide format printing.
  • July 10, Managed Print Services. Learn how Graphic Enterprises can help you reduce the cost of desktop printing in your business.
  • August 7, Creative Color. Are you still outsourcing your print jobs? Create your own flyers, postcards and banners for a fraction of the cost.

If you are a business owner in the Youngstown or Western Pennsylvania areas, we can help with all your printer and copier needs as well. Contact us today!

Print App Adds Functionality to Konica Minolta Printers

SmartPhone UserAs a user of Konica Minolta’s award-winning line of bizhub multifunctional printers, you are already aware of the many features that make everyday document handling fast and efficient. But did you know that our PageScope Mobile printing app allows you to print directly from your Android™-based smart phone? Now that is productivity at its finest.

In addition to using the print app to print directly from your Android device, you can also scan documents for instant access. PageScope is the perfect choice for hospital personnel who want to print reports or patient files; teachers and students who need to print reports, student records or assignments; and corporate user who want access to information anywhere, anytime from their corporate network via Wi-Fi.

Read more

How to Put Konica Minolta’s Printing App to Work for iPads/iPhones

SmartPhone UserWant to get the most out your Apple iPhone, iPad or iPod Touch device and your Konica Minolta printer? Konica Minolta’s PageScope Mobile app is a cutting-edge application that connects your mobile Apple device with our line of bizhub multi-function printers. After installing the printing app from the iTunes Store, you can print directly from your Apple device, as well as scan documents for instant access on those devices.

Setting up a wi-fi connection between your Apple mobile device and Konica Minolta printer is simple, and I will explain how to add a printer to your device. Before you get started, make sure you have the following:

 

  • iPad/iPad 2/iPad 3: iOS 4.2, 4.3, 5.0, 5.1; or iPhone 3GS/iPhone 4: iOS 4.3, 5.0, 5.1; or iPod touch fourth generation: iOS 4.2, 4.3, 5.0, 5.1
  • Wireless LAN Connection
  • Compatible bizhub multifunction printer
  • PageScope Mobile App downloaded from the App Store.

Setting Up Your Mobile Print App

The first step in using the printing app is to ensure you have a Wi-Fi connection set up correctly between your Konica Minolta printer and your mobile device.

  1. Turn on your mobile device.
  2. Tap “Settings.”
  3. Tap “Wi-Fi.”
  4. From the “Choose a Network” menu, select the network you wish to use for printing, scanning and accessing the web. The  list of available networks detected will automatically appear.
  5. Return to the home page.

Add a Copier or Printer to Your Mobile Device

The next step is to choose the printer you want to use in conjunction with the PageScope print app.

  1. From the Home page, tap the PageScope Mobile icon.
  2. Tap the Select Printer icon.
  3. Tap Add Printer.
  4. If your mobile device automatically detects the available bizhub printers on the wireless LAN network, they will appear in Add Printer List.
  5. Tap the desired printer and press the Add button.
  6. If you wish to communicate with more than one available printer, tap each desired printer and press the Add button for each one.
  7. If your mobile device does not automatically detect the available printers, tap Manual.
  8. Tap IP address or DNS Name field.
  9. Enter the IP address of the printer.
  10. Press Return or Search.
  11. Press Add to add the printer.
  12. Return to Home page.

There you have it! Just by following a few simple steps, you’ll be ready to scan or print documents from your Apple mobile device in no time using Konica Minolta’s PageScope printing app. And check out our next blog post for a how-to on using PageScope for Android.

If you’re a business owner in Canton, North Canton, Green, Akron, Youngstown or elsewhere in Ohio or Western Pennsylvania, we would be happy to help you get the most out of your office equipment. Contact us if you’d like to learn more about the many product features of Konica Minolta copiers and printers.

 

Help Prevent Counterfeiting by Securing Your Copiers and Printers

The practice of counterfeiting currency is as old as money itself. What’s new is the spin that modern technology has given this ancient crime. In the past, forgers who created fake currency needed not only offset presses and special inks, but also high-level skills with engraving plates.

Prevent counterfeiting by securing your copiers and printers

Today, state-of-the-art printers and copiers have taken over where this illegal art form left off. At the end of the 2009, there was approximately $893 billion in United States currency in circulation, along with $69 million in counterfeits. The vast majority of those counterfeit bills were made by amateurs using high-tech digital copier and printer products.

Printer and Copier Security Options

There are two main ways to protect your business from fake currency. If you accept cash at any point in your business operations, it’s critical to train front-line employees on how to spot fraudulent money before it’s even accepted as payment. The U.S. Secret Service website offers detailed information on the ins and outs of detecting counterfeit bills.

The other way is to help prevent counterfeiting in the first place by securing your company copiers and multi-function printers. Ordinarily, we talk with our customers about user authentication and account tracking for managed print services. However, these features also offer an added layer of protection against the chance that someone might use your office equipment for counterfeiting.

User Authentication with Electronic Office Equipment

Most user authentication practices involve a PIN (personal identification number) code. However, fingerprint recognition, swipe cards and RFID (radio frequency identification) key fobs can be added to certain copiers and printers. All these methods allow you to set usage parameters and control who can use a particular machine and for what purpose.

Account Tracking for Usage Reviews

Account tracking goes hand in hand with user authentication. It allows you to run user reports at any time. These reports can show you who used a copier or printer for how long and for what purpose. The primary purpose of account tracking is to control costs, but implementing it together with user authentication can be a strong deterrent against misuse of company equipment.

Read more about the benefits of user authentication and account tracking. Together, we can all do our part to reduce counterfeiting, which, in the long run, helps us all.

If you operate a business in Canton, North Canton, Akron, Youngstown or elsewhere in Northeast Ohio or Western Pennsylvania and want to know more about setting these features up on your copiers and printers, contact us. If you don’t have an IT services provider, we can help you with that, too.

Image credit: dolgachov / 123RF Stock Photo

How to Make a Banner with Your Konica Minolta Printer

Copier that Allows You to Do Banner Printing

One of the most unique features of select Konica Minolta copiers and multi-function printers is the ability to create banners. In fact, I have not seen any other copier or printer manufacturer offer this option with office equipment.

Having a vinyl banner made professionally can be expensive, especially if you do not need it for a long period of time. A color banner that’s printed on a Konica Minolta looks truly impressive and is simple and cost-efficient to make. I have invited our trainer Mike Irwin to provide a step-by-step guide for you.

1. Purchase Pre-Cut Banner Paper First
The 11-in. x 40-in. banner is the most common size made with a Konica Minolta copier. The paper comes pre-cut and is available in a variety of weights. I usually recommend the heavier stock because it’s quite durable. Order here!

2. Create Your Banner in Microsoft Publisher or a Similar Program
The second thing you’ll need to do is create your banner in some type of desk top publishing program. Microsoft Publisher is common in an office setting and very easy to use. Create a custom size banner (11″ x 40″) from the blank page template and not from one of the templates as this is a different type of banner. After the banner looks exactly how you want it to look, save it.

Note: before you can print a banner, you’ll need to pre-program the 11-in. x 40-in. size and name it “banner” in your print driver. I will explain how to do this in a future blog post.

3. Put Your Konica Minolta into Banner Mode
On the Konica Minolta control panel, choose Utility/Counter. On the the touch screen select banner printing, select “allow” and then press OK. The copier is now in banner printing mode and cannot be used for anything else.

In fact, unlike other features, there is no automatic “time-out” with banner mode. The printer will stay in banner mode until you exit it. So, before you take this step, it’s a good idea to make sure no one else needs the copier for any other type of printing.

4. Send the Banner to the Printer
Click on print options/properties and choose the correct size paper (pre-programmed “banner”). Then, send your banner to the printer. You must do this before loading any type of paper into the bypass tray. The Konica Minolta must receive the entire file before it will be ready to print.

5. Load the Banner Paper into the Bypass Tray 
Once the printer gets the entire file, the touch screen will prompt you to load the end of the pre-cut banner paper into the bypass tray. You will need to hold the other end of the banner up. The “complete” button (lower right-hand corner of the control panel) will light up when the end of the banner paper is placed properly into the tray.

6. Press the Complete Button and Let the Copier Do Its Work
When the complete button lights up, press it. The printer will pull the paper in slowly; you can gradually let the other end go. The finished product will come on on the finisher tray or, if you don’t have one, on the middle tray. Support the banner as it comes out.

7. Exit Out of Banner Mode
Just click on the exit option. The copier will return to its normal function.

This banner-printing feature is perfect for schools, churches, print shops and more. And, in all the organizations throughout Canton, North Canton, Green, Akron and Youngstown where I’ve trained people to use it, they love it! The quality is phenomenal.

If you’d like to learn more about how to use your Konica Minolta printer, contact us.

Gearing Up for HIPAA Compliance Audits in IT, Part 1

Surviving a HIPAA Compliance AuditWhen the Federal Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act – affectionately known as HIPAA – was passed in 1996, no one was seriously thinking about how things like the Internet, electronic health records (EHRs), cloud computing and smartphones would affect personal health information (PHI). Fast forward 13 years to 2009, when the Health Information Technology for Economic and Clinical Health (HITECH) Act was enacted as part of the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act. Suddenly, there was an intersection between EHR adoption, government incentives and the safety and security of electronic PHI. Thanks to HIPAA, HITECH and other factors too numerous to list here, the delivery of health care services in the United States is changing rapidly and forever.

This year, the U.S. Department of Health & Human Services (HHS), via its Office for Civil Rights (OCR), launches the first HIPAA compliance audits ever conducted. (It only took them 16 years!) The OCR is planning audits of 150 HIPAA-covered entities in 2012, including hospitals, physician and dental offices, labs, nursing homes and pharmacies. Security compliance will be a major part of the audit, and, in today’s world, that rests heavily on IT folks.

I recently read an article that describes information security as the Achilles heel of PHI. Unsecured storage devices, portable devices and the concept of BYOD (bring your own device) make data loss via theft or computer failure a very real issue – and a headache for any health care IT department. Plus, under HITECH, liability for a PHI breach is extended to business associates (i.e. third-party vendors, suppliers, consultants, contractors, etc.). So, if you’re in IT, you have to think about systems security with any business associate you work with.

I know Graphic Enterprises will be considered a business associate by many of our health care customers in Ohio and Pennsylvania who use the copiers, printers and document management systems we provide. In many cases,  our equipment and software play a critical role in both HIPAA and HITECH issues and objectives.

If you’re reading this, chances are good that you’re not among the first 150 entities that are being audited this year. But, you can be sure you’ll eventually be under the microscope.

So, in this series of blog posts about HIPAA compliance audits, I want to help you get ready by discussing some of the IT security issues that face the health care industry and how you can minimize your risk – particularly with business associates and the use of copiers, printers, multi-function printers and document management systems.

Bizhub: The Efficient Onramp & Offramp for Your Document Workflow

Graphic Enterprises offers copiers in Canton, Akron, Youngstown and western Pennsylvania

Even though going paperless may be a goal your business is working toward, I’m betting you aren’t quite there yet. And, even if you do some type of electronic document management, perhaps your efforts are scattered across several different platforms.

I’ve invited Chip Reihl, our sales manager, to share a solution that can get you closer to a paperless workplace and help you better organize all incoming and outgoing documents.

 

With the capabilities of a copier, printer, fax machine, scanner and more, Konica Minolta’s line of Bizhub multi-function copiers can become the hub of your communication as it relates to paper and technology – in other words, a virtual onramp and offramp for your business. All your printed materials come off, and every hard copy that needs to be an electronic image can be added on in seconds.

In fact, the scanning technology works at the speed of the 78-page-per-minute document feeder, even if you’re only copying 20 pages per minute. Bizhub also offers electronic document routing (so you can skip printing stuff out) and seamlessly integrates with apps and architectures that, for example, can automatically turn scanned pages into Word documents or PDFs. The easy-to-use control panel ties everything together.

My customers often tell me how great the Bizhub prints look, too – like originals, in fact. That’s thanks to Konica Minolta’s advanced microtoning process.

For your IT department (or person), Bizhub comes complete with all the tools you need to connect it to your network, where printing volumes, supplies and service can all be automatically monitored. Some sophisticated features include biometric access and user authentication.

Bizhub really is a one-stop shop for document workflow. Perhaps it’s the document workflow solution you’ve been looking for. If your business is located in or near Canton, Akron, Youngstown or even to the west of Pittsburgh, contact us for more information about Bizhub.