Inside Track: Print and transformation
9 February 2017 | 0
With managed print services maturing, device capabilities and protections growing and the relentless drive for digital transformation, enterprises are coming around to the fact that print looks like it will be here for some time yet.
But with preparations getting underway for the General Data Protection Regulations (GDPR) to come into force in 2018, as well as greater awareness of both privacy and data protection, what are the vendors doing to ensure that printing keeps up with market demands?
“There is growing awareness of the importance of GDPR but I think that fits with a general tendency to look more closely at security anyway. That’s something that’s been growing for the last few years,” said Martin Deignan, country manager for Oki Systems.
Intended to strengthen data protection for individuals in the European Union, the GDPR will present a challenge for many companies because it effectively changes what they can and cannot do with customer data, where it can be located and how it is to be managed.
“We don’t have a whole lot of people talking to us about GDPR specifically, but it does come up occasionally. However, as our lives get more regulated not just in IT but across the board, security and data protection are issues that we’re coming across more.”
According to Deignan, this awareness is influencing decision making and in particular the way companies are investigating what is out on the market.
“Protecting confidentiality is usually part of the conversation at some stage. It’s particularly important when it comes to outsourced managed print services, where a customer is obviously trusting you with a high degree of visibility into how they run their business,” he said.
“That comes up in terms of the software we deploy on site, making sure it has firewalls and complies with various regulations but where it comes into effect most is the usual functions within a company where quite a lot of things are confidential. This usually includes anything around human resources, business strategy planning, anything at board level that is used for decision making in general.”
So while companies are becoming more aware of external regulations and issues such as the GDPR, they are also concerned with internal security and data integrity when it comes to how they handle printing.
“This also fits with the trend towards digitisation. Leaving loose bits of paper around with people’s salary information on it obviously can’t happen, but concern can go across other areas,” said Deignan.
While companies are always looking to save money and manage their businesses better, there is a broader level of concern at work about the role that information plays in the average enterprise.