Christine Dunne

Survey Shows Print Remains Important to New Work from Home Employees

85 Questions Explore Remote Work Printing, Scanning, and More

Jul 16, 2020 12:22:28 PM


People are working from home at much greater frequencies, but what are the implications for print? We’ve written about the impact on print volumes, but our new research The Future Office Survey: Working from Home During COVID-19 digs much deeper.


New primary research conducted by Keypoint Intelligence shows that 45% of new at-home workers have acquired a new print device—the research breaks out people who paid for it themselves, purchased the device and expensed it, or received it directly from their company. And about 57% of new work from home individuals pay for their own ink or toner, either on an as-needed basis or as part of an auto-resupply plan. When the company covers the cost, in some instances, the worker pays upfront or at least initiates an auto resupply plan. Another option is that the company pays the cost under a resupply plan.


Do you pay for the ink or toner that you use for work-related printing? 
Source: The US Future Office Survey: Working from Home During COVID-19 (Keypoint Intelligence, 2020)


About 71% of remote workers paying for supplies say they’d print more for work if their employer covered this cost; the survey suggests that people receiving a printer from their company are most likely to be maintaining their levels of printing pre-working from home.


These findings certainly have implications for print vendors. If they can encourage clients to equip work from home staff with new devices, it appears their print habits could remain steady. It is not too late for these vendors to be thinking about strategies for selling into work from home environments.


In fact, the research revealed that the majority of respondents desire to keep working from home once the COVID-19 threat has passed (at least part of the time) (58%) and think their work will allow them to do so (80%).


If you wished to do so, do you believe that your organization will allow you to work from home once the COVID-19 threat has passed?
Source: The US Future Office Survey: Working from Home During COVID-19 (Keypoint Intelligence, 2020)


It is worth noting that the oldest of workers (50+ years old) are by far most likely to want to continue working from home going forward as well as believe their company will allow it part of the time. This could be related to concerns that COVID-19 has a more dangerous impact on older individuals as well as those with underlying health conditions. Or younger people may want to return to the office because they feel that they require mentoring to advance their still young careers.


The company size findings are also revelatory. While workers in the smallest of companies (1-49 employees) are most likely to want to continue working from home going forward, it is the largest of companies that are expected to allow at least some form of work from home post-COVID.


The survey results can be viewed in many different ways, including by company size, age, the type of print device behind used (i.e., pre-existing, new device purchased by worker, new device purchased by worker and expensed, new device delivered by company), and country (United States, United Kingdom, and Germany).


The 85 questions explored remote working and print/document opportunities from a wide variety of angles, including:


  • Remote work printing purchases and behavior: This includes the primary work from home device, top features considered for the device, change in work print volume, breakdown of optional vs. required printing, and most printed document types.


  • Attitudes toward working from home: Work from home challenges, the impact of remote work on productivity, and how the right technology could impact productivity are just a few of the areas explored.


  • Changes in personal (non-work printing) printing during lockdown: This covers the change in personal printing, the change in household printing, the impact of home schooling on print, and the most printed document types for personal purposes.


  • Remote work scanning behaviors: This includes COVID-19’s impact on the move to business process digitization within companies, how scanning behavior has changed, and the extent to which scanning with smartphones is practiced.


  • Other technology purchases and behavior: Areas explored include the devices/services that have been acquired during lockdown, how the items have been paid for, and the cost for the technology.


Clients can access the full results of the US survey, which has a 289 sample of new COVID-19 work from home office workers and an additional 67 sample of people who worked from home prior to the pandemic for a total of 356 person sample size, in the Office CompleteView consulting service (Excel data and PowerPoint analysis). Future analyses will also be available to subscribers of our office-related syndicated services as well as European versions of the survey and analysis.


Are you an office print vendor with an opinion on these findings (or this topic)? Feel free to email me at with your perspective. If you are interested in accessing this research, please contact