iamge of a typewriter on a table
Read Time, 3 min.

Why are we spending more on printing than AI?

I was taken aback by two pieces of data I saw recently. IDC¹ reported that worldwide spending on AI (Artificial Intelligence) was $24BN in 2018. Reuters² then revealed that the spend on managed print services ALONE was $33BN. Given Microsoft’s recent AI research conducted by EY identified that 65% of organisations expect AI to have a high impact on their core business, it seems that there is a disconnect between current investment and future-proofing the business.

Yes, some companies need to print some documents as part of their day-to-day business. We all accept that. The reason I am conflating AI and printing is due to recent discussions I’ve had with customers.

We’re talking a lot with customers about digitising existing, inefficient, paper-based processes using our Dynamics Power Platform and PowerApps.

With Dynamics Power Platform customers can quickly create simple applications to solve recurring pain points in their business without the need for deep development skills (known as ‘no-code/low-code’ development).

From security guard to trusted advisor

Take Samit Saini. Samit was a security guard in Heathrow. Having taught himself to build apps with the PowerPlatform, he’s helping to digitise Heathrow’s paper processes. Samit explains it so well below.

This is such a compelling cultural message – everyone in the organisation has the chance (and should) to contribute to digital transformation.

Paper cuts in your business

Samit’s solution can be adapted and applied to address so many pain points within any business. Think of scenarios like health and safety reports, vacation requests, facilities rosters, etc. Having these paper-based processes can create layers of unnecessary complexity, slowing the business down. The impact is also felt in terms of environment, security, and cost of having all of that paper floating around.

Just think..

The average employee prints 10,000 pages per year, costing the organisation €600. How many employees are in your organisation? By my rough calculations if even half of the 2.3 million of our working population in Ireland do this, it’s costing us €690,000,000 per annum…………..

By digitising these processes, we’re not only saving money and time, we’re helping customers to drive deeper insights into their business. Through AI, we can rapidly sift through all of this net-new data to find new, actionable insights.

Equally importantly, we’re empowering employees to participate in the whole innovation process. In a lot of companies, ‘innovation in technology’ has remained the preserve of the chosen few: either developers, or strategists, or transformation leads. Our recent research on Digital Culture, shows that this is a counterproductive issue as organisations need to create the right culture to ensure that they succeed with their digital transformation.

Every person in an organisation can and should have the opportunity not only to consume innovative products and services, but also build them.

So – if you’re spending more on paper and paper processes than on #AI and digitising with PowerApps, now’s the time to change. The impact on your organisation can be profound.

Oh – and it’s easy to get started.

So why wait?


¹ https://www.idc.com/getdoc.jsp?containerId=prUS44291818  

² https://www.reuters.com/brandfeatures/venture-capital/article?id=33111 


Ger Perdisatt

Enterprise Director

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