Franking machines are designed to print postage stamps onto envelopes or parcels. The important aspect with regard to the cost-effectiveness of owning or leasing a franking machine is that without one the sheer manpower and time required to hand stamp every single parcel and envelope leaving a mailroom would far surpass the actual cost and maintenance of a single machine. Businesses and companies across the country, and across the world, undoubtedly rely on the Royal Mail to one extent or another, and all certainly have a mailroom. Without a franking machine, the costs of running a mailroom would be exorbitant.
Instead of spending time purchasing booklets of stamps, companies have become savvy to the benefits of franking machines, and rather than employing an entire mailroom, have in place a few to manage the upkeep of the machine and receive in-coming correspondence.
In recent years, franking machines have become widely available for all price ranges. In order to find the right franking machine, the first thing to do is to assess your company’s specific mailroom requirements. It is vital to gather more and more info as you do your research so you will be able to reach a well-educated buying decision. Also, it is important that you take into account the money you will be able to save in the long run when potentially calculating the costs of a machine. Whether you go for an entry-level, or high specification model, they must meet your requirements.
A Brief History
The franking machine’s inception was the year 1884 by a Norwegian technician, Engle Frankmussler, who in turn made the machine his namesake. Frankmussler created the franking machine to solve the security errors rife in the postal system at that time. A post was often delivered to the wrong place, if delivered at all, with parcels and letters being deformed and lost along the way. The franking machine came as a solution to ease the job of the Postmaster. The franking machine was first dubbed the ‘Postage Stamp Affixing Machine’ and was first showcased at the World Fair in Germany.
At the same time in the United States, a rival inventor, Arthur Pitney, was nearing the end of development for his Pitney Post Machine, of a similar premise. Pitney had the machine patented and his company then became, what is now known as the American Postage Metre Company.
Early franking machines were manually operated. Their only disadvantage was that they could easily be played around with and tampered with. As the years have gone on the machines have developed the highest technology in security and have become functional for day to day businesses of all scales across the globe, and the machines can send hundreds of letters a day,
How Can I Save Money Using a Franking Machine?
There is an abundance of financial and time-effective advantages when using a franking machine, for example, you will always receive the cheapest postal prices with your Mailmark tariff; you will eliminate any potential costly surcharges from the Royal Mail; your envelopes and parcels will be emblazoned with your companies logo, effectively using your franking machine as a costless and sure-fired marketing technique; you can avoid costly and unnecessary journeys to and from the post office, and will be able to have your post delivered much faster with high-priority business mail.
If you were to calculate the cost of employing a runner to travel to-and-from the post office regularly purchasing stamps, then to have them stamp your companies envelopes and parcels one-by-one by hand, it would certainly calculate, in a year, to the cost of a franking machine itself. So, with the aforesaid mind, it makes little sense to postpone the purchase of a franking machine for your company any longer. As previously touched upon, franking machines are available in all specifications, designed and catered around your business’s needs.
A frequent criticism of franking machines in years long gone was that a machine would be constantly required to be connected via telephone line so it could update itself and stay in touch with the newest tariff information. Now, this argument against the use of franking machines is completely redundant; franking machines, mostly, are all entirely wireless, which of course has drastically improved the upload and download speed for information and has rendered a telephone line unnecessary, which potentially can save you a lot more money.
Should My Company Rent a Franking Machine or Buy One?
Renting a franking machine can be very beneficial. Rather than purchasing a high specification franking machine, you can rent one for significantly less but still reap the benefits and rewards of a top of the mark franking machine. You will save the up-front lump sum and pay only affordable arranged installments. However, you will be tied into a contractual agreement, and should any damages occur you will, of course, be entirely liable to amend them or incur further costs. At the same time, any maintenance needed will be arranged by the provider of the machine.
If you were to purchase a franking machine, of course, there would be an expensive up-front cost, but you would not be liable for damages nor would you be tied into a contract which could prove to be very unwanted in a time of financial hardship. As with anything, both come with their positives and their negatives. You must ensure to select a Royal Mail certified supplier to prevent faulty goods or poor maintenance whether you rent or purchase.
Choosing the Right Machine
It is important, most of all, to make sure that the franking machine you choose is right for your business. Research is of course, as with anything, very important when it comes to selecting your franking machine. As you would with anything in your life, spend time shopping around and make sure you examine the reviews and benefits offered by the company with whom you choose to spend your money.
Without franking machines, the business sector would be at a loss; this keen technological development has aided the way that the world sends a post. Now you know just as much about franking machines as I do!