Can using the right font save the government money?


Have you ever given thought to what fonts you use to print, and whether your choice of Comic Sans or Impact might lead to higher costs?  One teenager evaluated the costs of various inks and then applied it to the federal government’s spending, and determined that just by changing fonts the federal government alone could save more than $100 million a year. On ink.

CNN covered 14-year-old Suvir Mirchandani’s research, which began as a way to find ways to cut waste and save money at his middle school in Pittsburgh. An area he found promising was changing the core font used for printing.

Applying the same simple formula that he tested at his school with the government, swapping Times New Roman with Garamond, he found that between the various state and federal governments, a combined $400 million a year just on ink costs.

The government responded they’re trying to move to digital as opposed to optimizing their current processes (and hey! we use recycled paper), but that feels naive – why not implement a simple change that can save that much money right away?

From my perspective, this is an incredibly elegant solution – little effort, major impact.  Well done.


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