Tenders, OCG and what i have learnt
soe of you may have seen me post threads about printing costs etc and a rant about financial regs etc
here is what i have learnt, hope this is useful.
as far as i know each county council has different tender limits, ours is £10k over the life of a contract. this means if you are to spend over £10k on a solution, even if it is over 5 years, (be this manages wireless, enterprise printing etc) then the job needs to go to tender. if you want to avoid this long winded way you can go to the OGC (Office of Government Finance) who have pretendered contracts inplace any way (make sure you check that the scope covers education).
BUT if the project requires 15 or more units, be this toner, printers, wireless APs then you may have to go to mini competition (read tender-ish) this means that there will be an OGC contract in place but there may be more than one contract holder. in which case you will have to get quotes in TO THE OGC on OGC mini comp forms (fun eh)
If you are after a printing solution ad look at the OGC route there are 4 companies who hold the 'Print output' contract; Canon, Infotec (Ricoh), Océ and Xerox. having just (this second) got off the phone to Océ they only (at this time) offer MFD devices. canon only offer their software solution (which looks really good tbh). i have not heard back from Xerox (more calls today w00t).
if like me you are in a rush; (well were were, learning all this has taken time, and proabally would have been quicker to tender it-meh)
there is another contract (RM450) i struggle with the full name (its long) this is held by ricoh, who gave us the best quote in our orignal investigate.
with the ogc prices are held for the life of the contract so this will help even further. any more or if my rant has confused please feel free to ask or call (number on website)