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General Chat Thread, Cost Savings in General; So, just had an email come through regarding cutting costs next year, and how I plan to reduce expenditure. After ...
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    Cost Savings

    So, just had an email come through regarding cutting costs next year, and how I plan to reduce expenditure. After an hour or so of thought, and a few notes made, the only real changes I can think will save money are regarding printing/consumables etc. There really isn't much else that I can think of. Replacement keyboards/mice due to vandalism is always an unplanned expenditure, so can't really have any thoughts on that, so I was wondering what strategies my fellow colleagues have made.

    My ideas:

    Robust print management and implementation
    "eco-mode" on printers to reduce amount of toner used
    restrict amount of copies one can print (pushing towards photocopier, which works out cheaper)
    Robust power-management of PC's so they turn off efficiently, use sleep mode etc

    What else have you got?!

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    DevilsAdvocate's Avatar
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    Can't really add much else but, if you have laptop/tablet charge trolleys put them on timers to only charge during certain hours. We're also in the middle of setting up a new print solution along side Ricoh to cut our costs. The printers / copiers will be setup by default to print in duplex to save paper, not sure how good of an idea this is yet...but it something to consider.

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    Do you use projectors? If you can enforce them being turned off when not in use (probably one for policy from SMT rather than a technical issue) that should save you a pretty penny on replacement lamps?
    Also if you can put them in some kind of ECO/Low Power mode you can boost the lamp time from ~2000 hours to up to ~3000 hours, but I think things like the fans run slower and the projection will be dimmer, so it's a trade-off

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    Perfect, thanks for them. I think we have Duplex set up already, but we will check to ensure. Projectors is something we will definitely look at. We have brand new Epson's in the majority of the school, and they have a piece of software that can control the timings etc, as they are connected to the network. Something we can also look at getting properly set up

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    I think the biggest savings we tend to make is on the renewal of our Microsoft licensing and changing our broadband provider....could you look at either of these as well?

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    sparkeh's Avatar
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    Do you have some kind of print management at present?
    Implementing PaperCut more than halved our toner bill.

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    localzuk's Avatar
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    I suppose it depends on what expenditure you would have planned?

    Do you have a fixed replacement cycle for PCs? Can you extend their lives by a year by adding SSDs to them to give them a boost instead of buying new ones?

    Do you outsource anything? Can it be negotiated down in price or brought in house and run cheaper internally?

    Is there any software you have a yearly license fee for that you can do without?

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    We've just changed our broadband provider to BT to have a dedicated line, and it works out cheaper than the LEA provided system! Not entirely sure how we can save money on the MS licensing, it is based on the FTE count of staff and what we have as requirements to run the system!

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    Quote Originally Posted by sparkeh View Post
    Do you have some kind of print management at present?
    Implementing PaperCut more than halved our toner bill.
    I am re-looking at Papercut. We had it previously, but management changed the software when we purchased some new photocopiers, and it isn't great. Can't manage the classroom printers effectively whatsoever, so going to make a case for implementing PaperCut so we can really clamp down on classroom printing.

    Quote Originally Posted by localzuk View Post
    I suppose it depends on what expenditure you would have planned?

    Do you have a fixed replacement cycle for PCs? Can you extend their lives by a year by adding SSDs to them to give them a boost instead of buying new ones?
    We have just had a fresh instalment of machines with SSDs. Legacy equipment we are looking at the possibility of thin clients/VDI solution, which should prove big cost savings over time

    Do you outsource anything? Can it be negotiated down in price or brought in house and run cheaper internally?
    Nothing outsourced, except having a support contract with the company that basically re-built our network infrastructure. This will have to stay as some of the software/technicalities of the network is deep, and something that the current tram don't have the knowledge of

    Is there any software you have a yearly license fee for that you can do without?
    I think that will require some looking at, however, we've been through a similar exercise recently, and departments requested software and, by and large, they are actually using what they requested!!

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    To reduce our costs we use follow me printing so it won't print at a copier until told to. Which has meant a lot less paper is being used / wasted by staff who print bits and then forget about it!. We now have 10 copiers across our site? And we shall probs increase this number again at some point to reduce the numbers of smaller more expensive printers.

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    yup...we have follow-me at 12 locations, which works in principal for staff, but for students, letting them out of lessons to pick up work is never good. The have a tendency to get lost!!

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    Can you not have a push to stop vandalism? Its very rare we get any here. We have had more instances of worn out keyboards than vandalism. Do all your computers close down at night? Maybe you could set something up so they do it automatically? Would be better than sleep.

    Also have a look at changing your phone system to use SIP trunks, we saved a packet doing that!

    Maybe you could move some services to the cloud? Move Lync, Exchange & Sharepoint to office 365. You won't have to pay for certifcates, backup, servers, storage & licenses.
    Last edited by FN-GM; 21st March 2014 at 12:25 PM.

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    localzuk's Avatar
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    We used to have a lot of mice broken here, we managed to nearly entirely eliminate it by getting better mice (strange I know). The mice were cheap (sweex or the like), so they simply didn't survive the abuse kids gave them. We now get Microsoft mice only, and we've had to replace about 1 every term (compared to about 10+ per term previously).

    Is the kit being damaged high quality?

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    cable tying mice and keyboards to machines can stop damage to both the USB/PS2 ports and things like thefts, I did that here in our IT Suites and its slowed down a fair bit of theft/vandalism of mice nowadays, I would only recommend decent mice too as mentioned, when I started here there were some sweex.

    Print management can be a massive area of savings, dont be afraid to try and get rid of printers either and cap users usages on the systems, look at what you need on your campus, when I started here we had 10 MFDs, several even had finishers outside of our print room and departmental printers initially on our managed printing platform, all over the shop, when geographically we could do with far less, especially when printers cost you in terms of rentals to begin with, its cheaper to make staff walk a little bit rather than rent a copier when you already have one in a building/block. (though some sites wont support that)

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    Proactive measures are key.

    Convincing your admin to encourage teachers to go paperless is one way to knock down costs quite a bit. I hounded our curriculum director and academic support staff to no end, but until the head of school stepped in and said "we will conserve resources", it was much adieu about nothing. We've also convinced our admin to allow us to offload printer ink from the the tech budget for next year to provide a little "extra" motivation.

    We're probably going open source on directory, DNS, DHCP and file sharing as we are FINALLY ditching our exchange server for Google Apps for faculty and eliminating licensing for locally installed Office software. We will likely go Office 365 for Education for staff members that need it. That's $10k+ in SLA and licensing.

    We utilize open source for imaging and deployment.

    I am a huge proponent of gifts and donations, but make sure they go toward your long term goals. (E.g. Donating paper is only prolonging the print issue if you're going paperless)

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