Recently I read an article posted on WhatTheyThink by Jane Mugford (December, 2014) entitled “Is Upgrading Worth the Risk?” In the article Jane points out that it’s not whether the upgrade is worth the risk, but how you mitigate risk doing the upgrade that most challenges printers. She spends the majority of the article detailing some interesting and thought-provoking ideals to ensure the smoothest possible transition from version to version.

Jane also suggests while you don’t want to be the first to jump on a new upgrade opportunity (she recommends waiting at least six months), you also don’t want to wait too long to take advantage on potential new efficiencies and features the upgrade offers. She also proposes you never be more than one version behind the current newest software upgrade.

Our recommendation to this important topic is whether it be a simple functionality change or a major software revamp, new upgrades should be explored closely to see how each change will benefit YOUR business. Many times a simple (and often inexpensive) upgrade has the potential to dramatically improve printing productivity. And in those instances waiting six months may leave margin dollars on the table.

So while we agree it might not be necessary to take on each upgrade right away, evaluating the state of your business and how the software upgrades will benefit you will help you best determine the right time to upgrade.

Jane Mugford is a contributor at WhatTheyThink’s Print Software section as well the lead print MIS specialist at Web2Print Experts, Inc. a technology-independent print software consulting firm helping printers with web-to-print and print MIS solutions