How you define success when it comes to your managed print services (MPS) program will vary depending on your strategic plan and the overall objectives for your program. The metrics you track and measure to determine how successful your program is will also differ based on your business priorities. These key performance indicators (KPIs) for MPS can include anything from help desk and support metrics to financial, sales, and marketing numbers.
Even though KPIs are relative, the benefit to virtually all businesses is that they provide data-driven insights about day-to-day operations. This can make planning more effective and help you create a well-defined strategy that specifies not only where you want to go and how you will get there, but how you will determine if you actually arrived at where you wanted to be.
If you have not chosen KPIs for your managed print program, you can look to your strategic plan, marketing plan, or internal processes for ideas. If you still need some suggestions, here are five key KPIs, ranging from profitability to service levels, to use to determine the success of your MPS program.
Machines in field (MIF)
There are many ways to track the number of devices you're monitoring. For a high-level view into the size and scope of your managed print program, you can track how many devices you are monitoring across all customers. If you want to know how many devices you are monitoring on a customer level, you can find out the average MIF per customer. You can then go one step further by looking at what percentage of a customer’s total devices you have under contract.
Each option provides more detail than the previous one, but management status is perhaps the best indicator of future opportunities and areas for improvement in your marketing, sales, and assessment processes. In general, tracking the size of your MIF will provide you with a cursory view into growth trends. Are your customers growing with your solution? If so, at what rate are they growing? These metrics will help you determine if you need to focus more of your efforts on growing existing accounts as opposed to acquiring new business.
Early toner cartridge replacements
One of the top selling features of a managed print solution is profitability. In today’s competitive markets, businesses are increasingly looking for ways to improve their bottom line. Apart from generating more revenue, this often means cutting costs and streamlining processes. Managed print services can help businesses save up to 30 percent on print-related expenses, making it an ideal solution for end users looking to reduce their print spend.
One of the metrics you can measure to increase your customers’ profitability are toner levels. Many end users rely on the device to tell them when their toner is low and they are often replacing cartridges when there is a lot more toner remaining, believing that they are empty. Regularly tracking and mitigating early toner cartridge replacements for your customers can help you reduce unnecessary shipping and distribution costs, increase revenue yield on pages printed, and help you save your customers money on supplies.
Monthly recurring revenue (MRR)
As more and more data moves to the cloud, businesses are adding software-as-a-service (SaaS) solutions to their offerings to provide their customers with greater flexibility. SaaS solutions are typically more scalable and affordable than their enterprise counterparts because they are subscription-based. Many managed print providers offer both enterprise and SaaS solutions, but the latter better enable providers to forecast revenue on a monthly, quarterly, and yearly basis. MRR is the focal point of a SaaS business model and a key KPI that you can monitor to identify growth opportunities. You can also use it to accurately forecast and budget for your upcoming fiscal year.
Support ticket close rate
Once you have built a quality product or solution, the next step is to support your customers when they begin using it. It is a standard practice to have customers sign a service level agreement (SLA) so both the provider and the user are aware of their roles and responsibilities, and these expectations are clearly communicated. A good measure of how successful your team is executing your SLA is your support ticket close rate. How many tickets are you closing on a weekly, monthly, quarterly, or yearly basis? This metric will help you determine how responsive your technical support team is, address any internal process or communication issues, and help you craft SLAs that better reflect your business capabilities. Another KPI to keep in mind if your offering is service-oriented is your resolution time. Like your ticket close rate, this will tell you how effective your support team is at responding to and resolving customer issues.
Regardless of what industry you work in, customer satisfaction is a good benchmark to use when trying to gauge your success. It’s a truth universally acknowledged in the world of business that a happy customer is more likely to be a repeat customer and to recommend your products and services to others. Just look at the statistics on word of mouth (WOM) or referral marketing:
• 80% of all B2C and B2B purchases involved some form of word of mouth recommendation during the sales cycle. (Source: Forrester)
• 84% of consumers trust recommendations from their friends. (Source: Nielsen)
• Referral marketing generates customers who have higher lifetime values, are more loyal, and contribute higher margins per year than other customers. (Source: AMA)
• Nothing accelerates a purchase decision faster than a word-of-mouth endorsement from a peer whose only agenda is to help. (Source: Gartner)
Regularly conducting customer satisfaction surveys not only gives you a net promoter score (NPS), but it provides you with valuable insights into what customers think of your business, your team, and your product or service. If done correctly, you can also data mine customer satisfaction surveys for ideas on your product roadmap, the features and functionality of your offerings, and potential competitive advantages. If you listen to your customers and take their feedback under consideration, you are more likely to drive future customer satisfaction and, in turn, future growth.
These five KPIs only briefly touch on the variety of performance metrics that you can measure to ensure your managed print program is successful. For a more in-depth look at setting goals and KPI tracking, download our free Measuring MPS Success ebook.