AddLife of Redwood City, Calif., is a fast-paced landscaping and plant service company that designs and cares for some of the most beautiful and prestigious gardens in the San Francisco Bay Area – ranging from the private estates of top entrepreneurs to the multi-location properties of many Silicon Valley area companies.
With more than 50 employees working on hundreds of landscaping projects per month, AddLife produces a large quantity of documents from CAD programs, design images for onsite installation crews, quotes and bids for new projects, client proposals and presentations, work orders, invoices and payroll.
“We were using a mix of older printers that functioned inefficiently without an overall game plan,” said Rita Zamacona, operations manager. “Working on projects ranging from designs and installations to ongoing maintenance, we had continual issues with printer speed, quality and upkeep.” Problems included inconsistent network performance, mediocre image quality and inconvenient access. There were also frequent breakdowns, sluggish printing and the high cost of supplies.
Since the 30-year-old firm bases a large part of its business on the ability to mass produce high quality documents – with a high yield of up to 5,000 pages a month – the company needed a better solution to manage its printing and imaging processes across small workgroups for more productivity and cost savings. AddLife was also looking for the convenience of remote printing from mobile devices, as much of its service and operations takes place outside the office. When onsite at client businesses or residential properties, AddLife’s mobile, web-connected designers and care specialists often need to send images or documents back to the office for printing.
Across Small Workgroups
To meet the challenge, Epson supplied AddLife with 10 Epson® WorkForce® Pro C Series multifunction wireless printers. Multiple workgroups now print from multiple printers networked via wireless routers throughout the office, via USB to personal workstations, or from remote workplaces with mobile devices.
“The printer was easy to set up and connect to the wireless network,” said Zamacona. “Standardizing our workgroups on the Epson WorkForce Pro WP-4533 helps us streamline key operations and office processes. We now have a single type of network multifunction printer with laser-quality print, copy, scan and fax that meets our needs – with one set of supplies, one driver and simplified network management needs.”
The firm relies on CAD programs to create landscape plans for clients, but staff members weren’t able to easily print these files with their older printers. Since AddLife implemented WorkForce Pro WP-4533 printers as part of its printing and imaging strategy, the five team members of the sales and design group now regularly print out landscape plans designed in CAD programs, as well as images of plant choices and color options for new business and ongoing projects.
“Because of easier access to high quality printers, sales and design staff now print CAD drawings on a regular basis,” said Zamacona. “While we present our designs digitally in meetings, we find that printed images of plants and concepts are helpful as we walk through properties and help clients understand how an installation will come to life. Clients can also take the printouts to share with others to make final decisions.”
The five to 10 members of each account group use the WP-4533 printers for many office tasks, including printing, scanning, copying and faxing. They produce quotes and bids for current and new business, PowerPoint decks and accompanying images, partner documents, and work orders. AddLife also shares its printed designs to show irrigation layouts to onsite installation crews and to map out building requirements for architect partners.
The team tracks the history of plants and orders in spreadsheets to update suppliers and partners on quantities and orders. “We make multiple copies and distribute them to various team members to meet the needs of property management companies,” said Zamacona. Three employees in the accounting group also use the WP-4533 for payroll, invoicing and reporting functions.
Staff can print directly from a mobile device, plus print remotely from any device that can email. “While onsite at a job, a designer, care specialist, installer or manager can use Epson ConnectTM to print back at the office,” she said. “If they see a plant or area that needs immediate attention from the maintenance team, they can send a photo back to the office for the team to quickly print out, view and plan the next step. This is not only extremely convenient but saves our company time and resources.”
Fast, Pro Quality, Low Cost of Ownership
The automatic two-sided printer’s fast speed helps AddLife meet frequent deadlines as it expands its reach. “Printing fast is important to us, as we need to print and process work as quickly as possible,” said Zamacona. “The WorkForce Pro is much faster than our previous printing solutions, especially during monthly invoicing and payroll.”
Print quality is a big draw for new business, due to the WorkForce Pro WP-4533 printer’s laser-sharp text and professional quality 4800x1200 dpi color graphics with 4-color DURABrite® Ultra pigment ink. “The quality of prints from the Epson printer makes a dramatic difference in our presentations,” said Zamacona.
“Quality underscores our design ideas, adds to our professionalism, and helps us accurately convey our vision to clients.”
Epson WorkForce Pro C Series workgroup printers come with a three-year warranty, a 25,000-page maximum monthly duty cycle, built-in networking via Ethernet or wireless, and larger ink cartridges – yielding up to 3,400 pages – for a lower cost per page.
“With our previous printers, we had to buy two sets of ink cartridges for each printer every month,” said Zamacona. “But after several months steadily using the Epson printers, we’ve only had one routine ink replacement. One set lasted our company through multiple reams of paper.”
The AddLife team is able to keep up with its busy production schedule with minimal disruptions, as the WorkForce Pro WP-4533 printer comes with a 250-sheet paper tray plus an 80-sheet rear tray for envelopes, labels and specialty media, as well as an optional 250-sheet tray. “The two-sided printing and optional 250-sheet tray are much appreciated as we approach the end of our monthly billing cycle,” said Zamacona.
Available Through Commercial Channel
WorkForce Pro C Series printers are available through Epson’s ImageWaySM Partner VARS and commercial channel resellers that provide solutions for small and medium-sized businesses like AddLife. Epson developed the WorkForce Pro C Series specifically to provide VAR and commercial channel partners with printing solutions that are cost-effective and meet the technology needs of users like AddLife.
AddLife is passionate about its customers and the many healthy, vibrant plant installations within its fold. “We found the Epson printers ideal for our small workgroup setting where design, installation and care specialist teams love the chance to execute new landscape designs that push the limits,” said Zamacona.
Creating a shared printer environment with the Epson Workforce Pro WP-4533 printers has helped AddLife maintain smooth operations as creates eye-catching gardens and landscapes throughout the Bay Area.
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Epson provided Epson WorkForce Pro WP-4533 printers to AddLife for business use. EPSON, WorkForce and DURABrite are registered trademarks, Epson Connect is a trademark, ImageWay is a service mark, and Epson Exceed Your Vision is a registered logomark of Seiko Epson Corporation. All other product and brand names are trademarks and/or registered trademarks of their respective companies.