Interview with Mr. Yamamoto, “Fuji Xerox Support Customers Through Documents”

Today at SaekCommdalComm, I have a special guest, Mr. Tadahito Yamamoto, President of Fuji Xerox. Mr. Yamamoto is well-known as ‘Fuji Xerox Man,’ who has been with us for 43 years. Since 2007, he has led the company along the path of innovation. Not so long ago, he paid a visit to Korea and I am here to tell some of the behind-the-scene stories.


Fuji Xerox Korea was quite busy getting ready for Mr. Yamamoto. My team (Marketing communications) arranged an interview for him with a daily newspaper.

The interview followed a warm greeting of the reporter. The reporter started with the question.

What is document management consulting?

“Documents are basically a tool for communication between people. The same goes for companies. And the document environment is critical for them, since documents are the major means of internal and external communication. Fuji Xerox provides client consultation by researching their document environment and improving it. Within this process, we ultimately help them save a significant amount of paper.”

The reporter seemed taken aback a bit by Mr. Yamamoto’s response. Multifunction device companies like to see their clients use more paper so they can sell more devices, not vice versa. So the reporter went at it again.

“Fuji Xerox used to be one of the leaders in multifunction devices and printers. Why is it now that very company wants to push less paper use?”

Courtesy: Flickr by Muffet

What prompted Fuji Xerox to get into the consulting business

“Recently, companies are investing a lot to establish smart offices by giving tablet PCs to employees. That is a good start, since more electronic documents lead to less paper, thus transitioning to a ‘paperless office.’ As a result, we figured that sticking to the conventional manufacture of hardware like multifunction devices, printers, and replacements could soon make us less relevant. Companies need to evolve as the world changes. Fuji Xerox wants to help clients that are trying to build a smarter document environment. Not as a simple hardware manufacturer, but by changing our business direction to become a service and solution provider.

Even with difficult questions, Mr. Yamamoto was an excellent interview, using a variety of examples to help the reporter understand!

Yeah, everyone says we should save paper. Anyone know how?

“Companies today have great interest in cost reduction and eco-management, making the paperless office a reality. However, finding the right type of solutions is not as easy. We see companies with a CIO, but not a CDO (Chief Document Officer), right? I have heard of CEO, CIO, CFO, but not a CDO. But then, it dawned on me that with a CDO, a company would benefit from systematic operation and management of its document environment.”

“Most companies don’t have the faintest idea how many machines are used by each division, how much paper is used, or the cost of it all. If we look at the document environment nowadays, we see waste all around. For instance, while a marketing team of 20 can do their document work with one color multifunction devices, we see them using an unnecessary number of machines, like 5 printers, 2 copiers, 3 scanners, and 2 fax machines. Obviously with that many machines, the maintenance cost is double and triple. For such a company as a whole, we are looking at an astronomical increase in machines, along with the amount of paper that is used. If electronic documents can replace paper documents, work can be much more efficient. It is this kind of innovation that Fuji Xerox is passionate to find for the client.”

Offices where people can use document machines conveniently and efficiently is a real ‘smart’ offices, right? J | Courtesy: Flickr by striatic

In general, 80% of communication in a company is done through documents. When we total direct and indirect costs, we find it to be 3% of total sales. Quite a lot more than I thought.

To sum up Mr. Yamamoto’s interview, his point is that just by being smart with document management a company’s communication effectiveness goes up, while document-related expenses go down. This changes the working environment into a truly ‘smart office’! All you need is a trusted CDO (Chief Document Officer) like Fuji Xerox to do the job done right.

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