In this exclusive MPSA interview extract, MWAi Information Architect & Vice President Mark McCuen talks with the MPSA about what’s ahead for the managed print industry and why membership in MPSA is especially important at this stage of the industry.
Mark has over 25 years experience in the digital printing and publishing industry. During that time, Mark has served in key roles that led to the creation and execution of game changing technologies and solutions that drove the introduction of desktop publishing, wide format color printing and the establishment of the digital multifunctional printer as the core solution for office work group automation. For most of the last decade, Mark pioneered and implemented office solutions strategies at EFI (Electronics For Imaging) focused on print, capture, MPS and mobile printing.
MPSA: Why is the Managed Print Services Association important to the MPS industry?
Mark McCuen: MPSA counts MPS leaders among its members, along with people just starting out. Communication and sharing ideas and best practices within this common ground is the only way to success and innovation. Even if you think you have it all figured out, you can’t do it by yourself. Any organization that brings best practices together is important to the members of that group.
MPSA: What attracts MWAi to the MPSA?
McCuen: We are very impressed with what the MPSA is doing. Communication is key to managing the change we are all going through, and it’s productive to gather and connect like minds. We want to help MPS providers as they are putting their services together.
We are also attracted because the picture is bigger than MPS, and as an industry, we need people with the right expertise, and then we can grow from a core MPS practice to true Managed Services. We are thrilled to be part of this industry, but hold onto your seats because if MPS providers do this right, we have the chance to become major service players in the enterprise. Don’t limit yourself. We want to help grow the pie, and this means not being limited to printing. Take edocuments; customers still need services to set up document workflow.
MPSA: What other thoughts about MPS and the MPSA do you have?
MPS as an app
McCuen: As MPS players, we as an industry need to restructure our approach. Customer environments are fixed now, but becoming less so, and in the near future, service technicians and account support personnel will access more data from apps for cost-effective, instant updates.
End user organizations are getting more open to working with cloud-based solutions as well. MPS needs to embrace the cloud structure along with new applications (apps) and bring this awareness into their environment, because it is the future of technology. As this model takes hold in enterprises, services-based on apps will affect our industry. This machine-to-machine communication is about accuracy, speed and getting people out of the way.
Don’t limit yourself to the print side
McCuen: Some things will always be printed, such as brochures and flyers, but some estimates say 40 to 45 percent of enterprise printing is wasted or unnecessary. Expert printing is where the industry will evolve, with the printing and finishing of critical documents and customer-facing documents.
Our industry needs to understand where print is going. The focus is more about how customers digest information. While a lot of printing is going away, many services can still be applied to your customer’s business-critical information and how it is distributed and consumed. What this means for MPS is don’t hang your hat on print; look for other services that you can manage in the enterprise. If you’re successful in MPS, you already have the core competencies; you just need to expand your reach.
The need for new knowledge and strategic collaboration
McCuen: Every distribution channel evolves. In 2012, that process will be active and opportunistic. There’s a learning curve to all of it. One area where the MPSA can assist the industry is to collaborate with development companies such as MWAi and others who can share important information regarding security, mobility, connectivity, device expansion and voice development.
A lot of MPS providers are confused about whom to partner with. MPSA can create best of breed collaboration and networking to get them down that road.