An Executive Order is a legally binding Presidential mandate intended to better manage the affairs of the various federal agencies that provide services on behalf of the American public. You might think that an order issued with the intent to reduce wasteful spending would be universally implemented because it simply makes good business sense to do so.

Why then does it seem that little has changed since Executive Order 13589 was issued in 2011, requiring efficient spending and targets for reduction of printing costs throughout the federal agencies?

There are two reasons for this. First, such orders establish higher expectations without suggesting how agencies can meet those challenges. Executive orders don’t come with instructions, and not everyone understands the dynamics of print. Frankly, most people don’t even care about print and they have no idea how much an organization spends on printing each year or how much of that spending is entirely unnecessary. Pharos cares, which is why we have been engaged to help federal agencies reduce their costs and waste to meet these important new standards.

“Executive orders don’t come with instructions, and not everyone understands the dynamics of print.”

The second reason why this order is not fully implemented is that each agency has its own list of priorities deemed to be more important. But an Executive Order isn’t a suggestion or something to put on the back burner. It’s the law, and it carries the full weight of the law just as one that is formulated and passed through the Congress. Still, the reason given for implementation delays is often “other priorities.” But those other priorities typically don’t help agencies to meet the requirements of the law, and they rarely help them to reduce their overall costs or add a layer of security to an agency’s environment.

Security is everyone’s concern—cyber security, data security, airport security—the list goes on. Near the top of this list should be print security. Look around at the various devices and paper trays inside your organization. If you see printed output, you’re seeing a potential security or confidentiality breach. All federal agencies should require employee authentication at every printer and multi-function device to secure the documents they produce. This critical security layer alone can reduce unnecessary print volume by as much as 40% in some environments—an immediate and significant cost savings that can be applied to those other priorities. And that’s just getting started.

“You’ll be surprised at how quickly you can achieve a positive ROI and lock in savings year over year.”

If you can intelligently reduce your printer fleet to optimally suit the needs of your organization, and reduce your printing volume and supply costs by 40%, how much additional funding might be available for those “other priorities?” And how does your organization compare to industry-standard printing metrics? Do you have a device-to-user ratio of about 15:1 or are you closer to 2:1? If you’re not sure how to transition to a more cost-effective print strategy,
ask us—we can help.

Printing is the low-hanging fruit of your cost saving initiatives, and we have helped many agencies, Fortune 100 companies and higher education institutions meet and exceed their savings targets and security objectives. If you want to unlock a new source of funding,
let’s start the conversation. You’ll be surprised at how quickly you can achieve a positive ROI and lock in savings year over year while also improving the security and confidentiality of your print workflows.