Five trends that will reshape the print industry in 2020

Five trends that will reshape the print industry in 2020

December 17, 2019
Articles, Channel, Digital Transformation, Managed Print Services, Trends

In 2020 market consolidation will continue as the global print industry landscape continues to face the forces of digital disruption. Erosion of legacy revenue streams driven by hardware commoditisation and the ongoing transition to digitisation are forcing industry players to consider new ways of remaining relevant to enterprise customers. While many have embarked on journeys to become digital workplace service providers, the market remains vulnerable to rapid shifts in digital technology, nimble competitor activity and customer needs.

To remain relevant in the rapidly changing digital workplace, manufacturers and their partners should capitalise on five key trends.

Download the full report here: Quocirca Predicts 2020

Trend #1: Cloud MPS platforms will be based on a multi-cloud, hybrid and edge approach

The promise of higher levels of availability, on-demand capacity, low-cost storage and a broad digital ecosystem is accelerating acceptance of the cloud. Cloud as an enabler for businesses is radically different from traditional IT outsourcing, moving away from an upfront capital cost, software licence and maintenance model to a subscription-based model. Long-established managed print service (MPS) providers have recognised the opportunity here and added cloud to their service range, to differentiate their offerings. Independent Software Vendors (ISVs) are also stepping up to the mark, expanding their cloud print management offerings. Eliminating or minimising print servers alone can create cost savings, both financial and environmental, while a cloud-based subscription model reduces or eliminates capital expenditure and lowers operating costs for businesses.

In 2020 we expect to see the leading manufacturers expand their cloud offerings, particularly as a way to target the SMB market and encourage channel partners to move to a cloud model. Some are already making ground in this space such as Lexmark who launched a range of cloud print management tools and services in 2019.

  • In 2020, cloud print management platforms will emerge that can handle multi-cloud, hybrid, and edge as a single platform.
  • 73% of organisations expect to increase the use of cloud print management by 2025 (Source: Quocirca’s Print 2025 Report, Second Edition, 2019)


Trend #2: The Smart MFP as a digital enabler

The Smart MFP is a key enabler for digital transformation, acting as a conduit to digital workflow automation. While manufacturers have long been supporting embedded platforms to enable document capture and distribution to both the cloud and enterprise apps, there is still opportunity here are adoption has not reached maturity.

Through 2020, the positioning of smart MFPs as intelligent digital workplace productivity devices will demand a strong and broad portfolio of digital workflow solutions as well as a channel ready to transition to more of a software and services model. Quocirca’s MPS 2019 study revealed that over 80% of businesses using MPS do find that using the smart functions within an MFP is of value: however, the channel needs to build more expertise in this area to better educate both prospects and existing customers in the value of the apps to fully capture the opportunity.

  • 76% of organisations expect paper digitisation to be important to their businesses in 2025 (Source: Quocirca’s Print 2025 Report, Second Edition)
  • The growth in digitisation will also drive a growth in the need for better integrated print and digital information workflows. Print vendors need to grab this opportunity to build competitive advantage with higher value services.
  • In 2020, major industry players will expand their portfolio of embedded digital workflow apps to exploit the digital transformation opportunity.


Trend #3 Analytics will remain an untapped opportunity for many industry players

Businesses today want better insights into their workflows and increasingly expect such insights in real (or close to real) time. This shift is being fuelled by machine learning and AI, yet such capabilities are still relatively nascent in the office print industry. Analysis of content, using techniques such as data loss prevention (DLP), can help in ensuring that an organisation’s information security policies are adhered to.

Manufacturers have a wealth of product, network and customer data at their disposal. They should be looking beyond traditional print infrastructure analytics to develop customer insight and identify how to integrate big data into new service propositions that add real actionable value for businesses.

  • 74% of IT decision makers report that improved analytics are an important benefit of MPS deployment in their organisation, (source: Quocirca MPS survey 2019)
  • Predictive analytics and data visualisation will differentiate next generation MPS engagements


Trend #4: Products to platforms

In 2020 and beyond, a thriving developer ecosystem will be critical to success for manufacturers and their partners. There is a wide-open opportunity for manufacturers to build stronger relationships with the developer community and differentiate their developer ecosystems. Developers are central to digital innovation and fundamental to the success of today’s smart MFP embedded workflow platforms.

A platform model is perhaps the strongest opportunity for manufacturers to build an ecosystem around MFPs to support digital transformation initiatives. Although many have introduced embedded app platforms, only a few have so far have created a broad developer community. While Xerox ConnectKey is the most established platform today, HP Workpath promises to build further momentum in the development and fast deployment of customised digital workflow apps. It will be these open platform models with ecosystems that allow partners, customers, and users to co-innovate that will be the ones that gradually overtake closed, proprietary platforms.

  • 41% of businesses believe smart MFP embedded apps are very useful to their organisation, with 83% rating them fairly or very useful
  • The influence of Independent Software Vendors (ISVs) with customers is set to accelerate between now and 2025 as the platform economy and digital ecosystems continue to gain currency. (source: Quocirca’s Print 2025 Report, Second Edition, 2019)


Trend #5: Security will continue to drive competitive advantage

The ever-changing security landscape will demand intelligent multi-layered security solutions and services, and IT security teams will favour those suppliers with IT-centric security expertise. MPS providers should evaluate the managed security services (MSS) market which is expected to grow, driven by the increasing complexity of the enterprise IT infrastructure, particularly with the increasing threat surface made possible through hybrid and multi-cloud platforms. Within the context of an ongoing shortage of cybersecurity professionals, using the services provided by an MSS becomes a compelling proposition.

Quocirca’s Print 2025 study reveals that security spend continues to increase and security expertise is a top supplier selection factor. Those MPS providers that can successfully deliver highly differentiated security offerings, such as remote monitoring and security intelligence to help accelerate remediation across heterogeneous environments, will be best positioned to gain a significant competitive advantage.

  • Security continues to be at the top of organisations’ concerns. The move to cloud-centric platforms is making security more complex
  • 63% of IT decision makers say that security is the most important area of investment for their organisation between now and 2025. (source: Quocirca’s Print 2025 Report, Second Edition 2019)
  • 54% of IT decision makers says that the ability to provide security expertise, services and solutions will be an important supplier selection criterion by 2025. (source: Quocirca’s Print 2025 Report, Second Edition 2019)


Download full predictions report here: Quocirca Predicts 2020

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To register for an Executive Summary of Quocirca’s Global Print 2025 Second Edition Report or to purchase a copy of our latest report, please visit the report page on here.

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