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We are we heading?  I sometimes wonder that myself.  I'm engaged with a customer to sell NSI Capture Pro.  Capture Pro allows you to Capture emailed documents, scans, and web documents and route them to locations on your network with meta data. 

 

To me that means my customer won't be printing, scanning or copying as much, which leads us down the road to smaller less expensive systems.  Which means less revenue, less commissions, and smaller paychecks.

 

So far MNS for me has been a joke, I try and try and end up spinning my wheels. 

 

The future of our industry, your thoughts?

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Original Post

We had a ricoh rep come in a while back and tell our team that boxes were going away and if they didn't get on board with solutions/MNS/MPS/Services etc they would be left behind. I believe the solutions will play a major part in the future, but I don't think the box is going anywhere. My father who has done this for about 40 years now tells me about all the people in the 80's talking about going paperless and not neededing the box anymore to conduct their business. Historically we have not been very good at software sales. I do see a shift in that as more and more appointments it is coming up with clients.

 

I also think the Direct operations will eventually be sold off as eventually something that is not profitable will go away. Then the manufacturers will come back kissing the dealers a$$es and begging them to do more business with them. At some point they have to stop subsidising the direct losses with the dealers profits.

 

MNS has been a joke for us as well. I sat in the CDA meeting a while back and it was mentioned how many people were making money in the group off MNS. There was only a small handful out of the 80 dealers who said they had made money doing it. I end up spinning my wheels discussing it with clients as well. I find many of the people I talk to still want their IT in house. One of my larger clients just got rid of their outsourced IT and put a guy on staff and the reason had nothing to do wtih money,but instant support that was hands on.

Last edited by Jason H

I think we're all going to have to get really good at selling software that solves our clients' business & workflow problems.  If we don't someone else will, whether from inside of our industry or outside of it.  Smart dealers are going to have to realize that more of their revenue has to come from services, software & anything that can generate recurring monthly revenue.  This will likely mean losing revenue at some point, because hardware sales revenue will decrease, & it takes a lot of recurring revenue to make up for that.  But, that revenue will be much more profitable.  For years dealers have served the "Revenue gods" via hardware sales & the "Profit gods" via image-based service revenue, & the fact of the matter is that we're at a fork in the road that pretty much requires companies to choose between growing revenue at reduced margins or growing profitability through increasing recurring revenue not tied to their traditional lines of business.  I could write on this topic all day, but I've got work to do.

Just look at all the major MFR's, the "down the street business" is going to dealers and global/healthcare/legal/govt are all going direct.   The dealers can't handle those accounts nor do they have the expertise to implement the software solutions that are standard in those type of accounts from Cleveland to Miami to LA to NY where direct does. 

 

So local accounts = dealer

larger accounts that are all over = MFR vertical teams

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