When I first started my own media business in London almost ten years ago, I was printing invoices and tax bills with a printer I had found on the side of the road in Notting Hill. It was old, tedious, but it miraculously worked. And as crazy as it sounds, it’s not uncommon for many sole traders, small business owners and startups to skimp as much as possible early on in order to make ends meet. Fast forward ten years, and printers like the HP OfficeJet Pro 8730 have made professional, high quality printing accessible to any business owner - regardless of budget.
For only a few hundred dollars, HP offers a printer that produces documents in only seconds, scans moothly and copies beautifully. The smooth, ergonomic design fits nicely in a home office or workspace, and can hold 500 sheets, with a second 250-sheet paper tray. This is especially important for a fast-paced business like our Ecommerce startup, where we print dozens of invoices a day as part of our company’s fulfillment process.
The printer also allowed us to produce high quality product brochures and wholesale listings for our prospective suppliers, which we normally order from a third party printing service for hundreds of dollars a month. However if you need to print a pigment-heavy document double sided, I’d suggest using slightly thicker paper as the ink can feel a little ‘wet’ at first, especially when printing very dark colours. However the speed is phenomenal, and out of the four printers we have in our office, it is by far the fastest and quietest.
Intelligent printing on the go
What I like most about the HP OfficeJet Pro 8730 is the fact it is wireless, our small office is a medley of wires with all our printers, so to have less wires makes it much neater and gives us a more efficient workspace. The touchscreen also makes functions like scanning and photocopying very easy, but it would have been a little nicer, though not essential, to have a slightly wider screen for more ease of use.
The mobile functionality is super efficient for a time-poor business owner like me that switches between jobs as a digital journalist and Ecommerce startup owner. I can quickly print press packs, invoices, transcripts, business ideas all on the go, and know they will be ready and waiting for me when I return to my desk. The HP OfficeJet Pro 8730 also offers a USB function, but I did prefer the efficiency of the wireless and mobile options over the USB, especially as most of my documents and projects are now saved on cloud-based software.
Connectivity and confidentiality
In terms of connectivity to devices, the HP OfficeJet Pro 8730 is relatively straightforward. Mac and iPhone users may find set up slightly faster than those on Android devices, and our Toshiba laptop was a lot slower to set up than our MacBook Air. However once set up, the printer is very intuitive and easy to use, and requires very little staff training to hit the ground running.
The HP OfficeJet Pro 8730’s Webjetadmin function also enables monitoring software so you can take command of your printing environment from one central location, which is handy for business owners with multiple staff who are working on multiple devices. However for a small startup, we found there was little or no need to use this option.
For businesses where confidentiality is important, the HP OfficeJet Pro 8730 does offer a private printing function. We used this when printing out our recent customer invoices and our 2017 business plan, but the option would also be particularly handy for barristers, legal practitioners and SMBs where confidentiality is critical.
For price, efficiency and functionality, the HP OfficeJet Pro 8730 deserves a 5 out of 5 and for more detailed image printing or brochure creation, a 4 out of 5. Overall, if you are a small business owner or startup looking for a sleek, smart printer that is efficient and budget-friendly, the HP OfficeJet Pro 8730 ticks every box.