Save Thousands Buying Paper

The Zaikio Procurement Platform modernizes B2B procurement



Ryan McAbee


How we purchase things has forever been changed by e-commerce; with just a few taps on our smartphones, we can find/compare items and select products for purchase—any time, any place. Spoiled by such a seamless consumer buying experience, business users wish for the same level of convenience and simplicity. When it comes to obtaining mission-critical supplies, however, B2B procurement can still be an archaic offline process. This is the current state for print shops when ordering paper and consumables, and it’s frustrating to say the least.


For most of the printing industry, the method for purchasing paper has not changed in decades. It is a labor-intensive back-and-forth that requires the print shop to:

  • Aggregate purchase orders per paper vendor across all active jobs, often using a print MIS solution
  • Submit those purchase orders to the paper vendor via e-mail, fax, phone, or online order form
  • Wait for confirmation from the paper vendor for pricing and availability
  • Coordinate with the print buyer if the price is too high or if the paper is not available
  • Confirm the order with the paper vendor
  • Track shipments and arrivals to ensure the paper is available when the job needs to be produced


The traditional procurement process can easily take an hour or more, stealing valuable time from the estimator/planner of the print shop; time that could otherwise be devoted to sales and meeting clients’ needs. Research from Keypoint Intelligence found the average labor cost of an estimator/planner to be $41 in North America and €45 in Western Europe.


Based on these labor rates, spending one hour ordering paper each day could be costing you over $10,000/€11,000 per year in poorly utilized labor costs!


Example of a Traditional Procurement Process

Days Worked per Year 250 250
Estimator/Planner Hourly Rate $41 €45
Procurement Hours per Day 1 1
Yearly Cost $10,250 €11,250


Moving to a Modern Procurement Platform

Recognizing the need to modernize the way print shops procure paper, and wanting to “democratize the printing industry,” Zaikio has introduced its procurement platform. This platform replaces the offline multi-step process of sourcing, pricing, and procuring paper with a live connection between the print shop’s print MIS solution (or Zaikio’s web app) and a verified paper vendor. Once connected, the user makes a few clicks to verify pricing and availability, and then places the order. Zaikio provides updates for shipping and tracking details from the paper supplier to the print shop for planning.



Purchasing with the Zaikio Procurement Platform requires a few simple steps:

  • Create a free Zaikio account (one-time setup)
  • Connect your print MIS/Zaikio web app to your available paper suppliers (one-time setup)
  • Choose the material from the preferred supplier in the estimate based on real-time pricing and availability
  • Create and execute the purchase order and track delivery



PSPs should see a significant reduction in the time that is required to manage purchase orders and order paper within the platform since the solution is based on real-time information and can be accessed by the print shop at any time. If the time required to procure paper (1 hour per day in our earlier example) can be reduced by 90%, this could result in yearly cost savings of $9,225/€10,125.


Example of Integrated Procurement




Days Worked per Year



Estimator/Planner Hourly Rate



Procurement Hours per Day



Yearly Cost for Traditional Procurement



Yearly Savings with 90% Reduction in Time for Procurement




Our Take

The future of the printing industry will be integrated and data-driven. The Zaikio Procurement Platform provides a clear and beneficial use case for the outdated paper buying process. Free to PSPs, this platform approach removes the traditional obstacles of cost and time to create a custom integration between the print shop and multiple suppliers—resulting in a win-win situation for all participants.


The Zaikio Procurement Platform is currently available in select Western European countries with plans to expand to additional Western European countries and the United States later in 2021. For more information, please visit


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