Technological advancement is accelerating at a rapid pace and it’s not just consumer gadgets that are making a leap forward. The modern workplace has become equally as dependent on technology. It is the backbone of our working lives, from a computer on every desk (unheard of just 30 years ago) to cloud networking, e-operations and document management. Like consumer tech, offices have their own exciting advancements too.
As a product manager at Ricoh, I see first-hand developments that come from working for a global technology innovator. The challenge of speed and improvement is everywhere these days and it can be difficult to keep up – but businesses must innovate and evolve to become better positioned in times of change.
Innovation in the Workplace
Office design – companies wanting to create the ‘perfect working environment’ – has gone through several evolutions already over the last 20 years, often led by innovation from the Far East and US tech giants.
Ricoh is one such company that has a rich history in innovation – we created the fax machine and the CD-ROM, then in the 1980s we were the first to introduce Multifunctional Printers (MFPs – the sort that print, scan, copy all in one), reducing the energy, waste and cost associated with multiple standalone devices. Today they are found in just about every office environment.
Designed for Office Managers
So, it should come as little surprise that the latest offering from Ricoh’s printer division, the MP C2003SP and MP C2503SP, are packed with similarly innovative stuff. However, the real innovation is that these printers have been designed with a great deal of thought for Office Managers. Those titans of the office who are given the rather enviable task of holding everything together while all other employees are doing something ‘useful’.
Hurrah for that, I say.
At last, it’s not just about a new widget in the printers’ operating system that no one understands, but actually about the things that every-day offices do care about. It’s cheaper to run, it intelligently saves money, takes up less valuable floor space and goes longer between expensive toner changes.
Okay, so they did also include a new widget too (nobody’s perfect!). Both devices feature a unique stapleless stapler. The stapless stapler allows up to five sheets of paper to be bound using a ‘punch and press’ technique rather than using staples.
Why? Well, I’m glad you asked.
Weirdly, staples are one of the silent banes of the office. They run out quite a bit, or someone else has stolen your stapler. When shredding, copying or scanning you have to remove the staple (who hasn’t bled while doing that?) to do so and then re-staple again afterwards.
But what I think businesses across the country will like most about these office printers is the attention to detail – no stone is left unturned in the hunt for improvements in the way we work. Even the humble staple.