eWeek has one of their nice slide shows called 10 Ways to Not Save Money on Printing. It’s easy to forget printing when calculating budget and potential savings points, because everyone just “has to have” printing. You may have twice as many printers as you realize scattered around the company.
One reason you underestimate printing costs sometimes is because printing supplies fall under the office supply budget, not the technology budget. Paper and toner for the copier(s) goes into the office supply budget, and therefore so does paper and toner or ink for the printer.
Everyone should now be aware that the hot deal for the $49 ink jet printer doesn’t work out well when it costs $55 for new ink cartridges. Few “supply cost vs. acquisition cost” equations are so clear. This is why TCO (Total Cost of Ownership) calculations drive printer and copier purchases.
Take a look at printers from vendors outside the normal computer company names. I have two videos on this site about Xerox printers (search for Xerox in the search box on the upper right). You may be surprised at inexpensive an expensive printer can be when you look at total costs for a year.