Depending on organizational needs, it may be unnecessary to assign
one printer to each member of your organization. Such overlap in
expenditure can eat into allotted budgets, leaving less capital for
other necessities. While local printers attached via a parallel or USB
cable to every workstation are an ideal solution for the user, it is
usually not economically feasible.
Printer manufacturers have addressed this need by developing
departmental (or workgroup) printers. These
machines are usually durable, fast, and have long-life
consumables. Workgroup printers usually are attached to a print server,
a standalone device (such as a reconfigured workstation) that handles
print jobs and routes output to the proper printer when available. More
recent departmental printers include built-in or add-on network
interfaces that eliminate the need for a dedicated print server.