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Setting Up An Office Printer In Your Small Business

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Maintaining a fully stocked office is still required even with the rise of remote working. Your staff working from home should not be required to invest in machines like a printer, fax, and scanner, even if it is an MFC. Remember, space in the home is at a premium, and turning a bedroom into a study is not usually viable for your staff. Therefore even startups and microbusinesses need to provide an HQ with the office essentials and shared use.

The office space doesn’t need to be significant, as the design of the layout can allow for your business hardware and network as well as a hot desk or two. Use vertical racks and shelves for stacking machines and hardware, so all your office is utilized efficiently.

Among the kit you’ll want in your office is a wireless printer. The first step is to set up a wireless network and make sure you’re using a VPN for secure access by your team while preventing hackers’ entry to your business apps and data via your network.

Once you’ve got the proper network infrastructure, you can lease or purchase business machines with wireless connectivity. Once you’ve overcome the hurdle of selecting your business systems, the fun starts with the setup and bringing the equipment online for you and your staff to access.

Common Printer Issues

Many manufacturers use helpdesks to manage customer support with their printers. The common issues experienced today with printers are the initial setup, as turning the machine on is no longer enough. For remote access, it needs to be connected to the network to accept your print commands from your computer or device from your location.

Ongoing issues are printer ink is too low, paper jams, and believe it all not, failure to grab the paper on the print command.

Follow Installation Instructions

Installing a wireless printer can appear tricky at first, almost as tough as replacing the ink cartridges, but it’s not as hard as it seems. There are many perks to choosing wireless over just the standard ethernet connection. Most notable is the access with all office members able to connect and print. Plus, your business can have just one printer, which is cost-effective, energy-friendly, and space-saving.

Tips

These steps apply to most printers, although you should always check the instructions to ensure your specific model doesn’t differ from the below:

  1. Power up your printer by plugging it in and connecting to your network, either by Wi-Fi or Ethernet cable, depending on your model.
  2. If you’re using Wi-Fi, you can connect to the said network using the LCD menu display. Ensure the printer is close to your internet router to ensure the signal doesn’t drop out. Those using an Ethernet cable can set it up using their computer.

The next steps will depend on your model and how it works with operating systems, Windows and Mac.  Here are some quick tips.

Windows

Use the ‘Add a Printer’ wizard to install the software automatically. You should open the Control panel, choose ‘Devices and Printers’ and then ‘Add a printer. After this, click ‘Add a network, wireless or Bluetooth printer’ and select the model you are trying to install. Choose ‘next’ and then install any of the drivers. You should then find that the printer now works wirelessly and undergo these steps on each computer.

Mac OS

First, you must add the printer to your ‘Printers and Scanners’ preferences in the settings. Following this, there are a few other steps to take that depend on the model of the printer itself. The easiest option is to purchase a printer that is AirPrint enabled, as your Mac will then automatically connect to it and download the printer driver. Otherwise, you will have to add your network printer by an IP address, Wi-Fi or Bluetooth. You can find out how to do so on Apple’s website, where they give detailed information on all options.

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If you’re still struggling to get your printer to connect, consult the manual that came with your model. It may be that you need to install additional software, so check that your printer didn’t come with any before starting the process. Alternatively, you may need to connect to the computer using your printer’s IP address, which you can find within the properties section of the control panel.

Take on these tips for setting up an office printer in your small business, and you’ll be printing in no time. Don’t forget to also stock up on that essential printer ink and toner and that you have a plentiful supply of paper ready to go!

However, your work is not complete as most business machines have more features that are utilized, so now’s the time to identify what features your equipment has that saves time. Use the ‘shortcuts’ and for the environment, print on both sides and reuse paper or use recycled paper when printing if viable.

Further reading

In 2013 BusinessBlogs wrote an article on how businesses can be more environmentally friendly in the office and it’s still relevant today.