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How to Buy Print Supplies for Your School

November 1, 2018, 3:19 GMT+1
Read in 3 minutes
  • YPO’s category buyer for technology and communications, Zoe Morgan-Kriek, takes us through the different types of print consumables schools may encounter, and the benefits and limitations of each…
How to Buy Print Supplies for Your School

Right price

When it comes to print supplies, it’s no surprise that the accompanying costs are a crucial factor for many schools when deciding which products to purchase. Those looking to get the best value for money may find remanufactured cartridges to be a great option. These cost on average 30 to 60% less than brand new cartridges, so initially they seem like an attractive alternative.

Yet this cheaper option might not necessarily be the most cost effective – remanufactured cartridges can sometimes give rise to various printer maintenance issues, including problems with inks drying out.

While it’s good to save money where you can, with cartridges you won’t want the quality of your print jobs to suffer. Our procurement experts can help recommend suppliers that specialise in the sale of such cartridges and can offer after care support in case of any issues.

Better quality

If your upfront costs are less of concern to you than securing overall savings and ensuring good print quality, manufactured cartridges might be the better option. Before deciding, however, consider how much it will cost you to print on a single page.

A school that frequently prints in large quantities will benefit most from as large a cartridge size as possible, since higher capacity cartridges will offer more print-for-page and work out cheaper overall in the long run.

‘Jumbo-sized’ cartridges will typically entail higher upfront costs, but if you track the overall cost per page over time, you’ll find that they work out much cheaper.

There are framework options available which will give you the ins and outs regarding quality and the overall cost per page you can expect, given the volume of printing your school needs.


With suppliers increasingly conscious of the impact their industry has on the environment, they’ve responded by changing the way in which cartridges are now disposed of.

HP, for example, don’t send their spent cartridges to landfill sites, but rather see to it that the plastic from which they’re made is recycled into road surfaces, while at the same times using plastic bottles collected from across the globe to produce the cartridges in the first place.

Print consumables can be purchased at YPO separately on a compliant framework or as part of a multi-functional device (MFD) framework, where consumables are part of the click charge.

Most MFDs now offer the option of automatically ordering new print cartridges when required. There are also several free options out there for setting up the collection and recycling of old cartridges, thus ensuring we all do our bit for the environment.

Find out more about YPO at and on Twitter at @ypoinfo.

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