You’ve Negotiated – But Are You Realising Savings on Marketing Print?

You’ve Negotiated – But Are You Realising Savings on Marketing Print?

Spend Matters UK recently ran a two-part guest post by Santosh Reddy of GEP that asked if you were really realizing savings on marketing print (Part I and Part II) if you were using an outsourcing partner, such as a Print Management Company (PMC), to manage your marketing print.

In his posts he notes that the PMC comes with advantages, such as one or more pre-qualified vendors that can do all of the print jobs for all of their clients and who offer the PMC a preferential price for the guaranteed influx of work in addition to IT tools that can help your shop with digital asset management, etc. However, the PMC also comes with a disadvantage — the PMCs primary mission is to make money, not to save money for you. So the savings you get may not be as much as the savings you could get.

However, the key to savings in print is typically volume, so if you don’t use a PMC, then the category manager has to function as the PMC and make sure all print jobs get routed to the preferred vendor with preferred pricing and value-add benefits. But, as Santosh points out, this can be difficult to achieve since many internal departments, including marketing, retail, and HR, may not see the presence of Procurement as a benefit but instead view it as a loss-of-control or an unnecessary time-wasting step in the process. So how do you get the other departments on board?

Santosh presents four benefits you can sell and four less-friendly tactics you can employ if need be. Four of these suggestions in particular are quite powerful:

If these two benefits don’t get the job done:

  • one point of contact
    either the PMC or the category manager will be the sole point of contact for all internal customers – they won’t have to deal with five different print shops to find out who can do a rush print job
  • budget compliance
    it’s Procurement’s job to keep costs in line, not theirs, freeing up more of their time to do their jobs

then these two tactics will:

  • involve AP and inform them that policy states all invoices must be approved by you before being paid, as per the Procurement policy, then
  • incentivize compliance through gain or pain by rewarding those who use the process with faster services, more savings credited to their budget, etc. and punishing those won don’t by delaying invoice payments, reporting organizational losses from their actions to management, etc.

And he also gives you great advice on how to source, select the right technology to manage the process internally (whether or not you use a PMC), and establish a contract. This 2-part series is worth checking out. Given the cost of ink in North America, every penny counts!