Smart partners are evolving managed print services into managed content services, according to Matt Winlaw, HP Inc’s managed print services director.
In conversation with CRN, Winlaw said core managed print services (MPS) are now well-understood by customers and partners alike, are also mature, and therefore don’t offer partner a lot of growth potential.
But he thinks there’s more to do if partners consider the content passing through an organisation’s printing and scanning equipment and how it can be put to work.
“When you're managing businesses processes, you align those with hardware devices,” he said, offering the example of a healthcare organisation in which clinical staff need comprehensive records but it is also beneficial for a patient wristband to include a barcode.
He also suggested using scanners to not merely image a document but also initiate searches for keywords and route documents accordingly. Or integrating printers and scanners with security policies, to prevent exfiltration of documents or introduction of malware from external storage devices connected to printers.
Making these sorts of deals needs more than just an understanding of the supply and maintenance side of MPS. Winlaw said HP Inc has invested in staff that can help partners explore and deliver such deals, and is enabling its channel to do so independently too.
Such deals also offer another example of the importance of selling beyond the IT department.
Winlaw said content-drive MPS deals will see partners “talking to scientists, or the head of HR, or somebody in finance.”
And developing the skills to have those conversations pays off.
“Partners say they're getting a different response, on a more positive level of engagement with the end user when they're having a different conversation.”
Winlaw said HP Inc has also recently integrated Samsung’s print channel, after acquiring the Korean giant’s printer business. That transaction has also given HP Inc the ability to tailor devices for its customers, which Winlaw said should further boost partners.