School Print Solution
I work in a secondary school which has a sixth form. \we have around 1600 users. The school needs to save money this year (like many others) and, printing costs have become the first port of call.
We currently have a very outdated and uneconomical system in place. We have around 85 laser/inkjet printers, between 1 month and 5 years old from various manufacturers.
I have made enquiries with a couple of the big companies (Oki and Xerox) regarding there leased centralised print solutions - and at present they look very impressive.
I would however like to get some information from people that use them/have used them on a daily basis...
Can anyone recommend any other companies that they have used or are using?
Are there any pitfalls i should look out for?
Does anyone use the 'follow me print' system, if so, what are the pros and cons?
Thanks in Advance,
p.s. Apologies if there are similar threads, i did look before hand! :D
It sounds like we're in exactly the same situation (approx same number of students and printers)! I'm in the process of getting quotes at the moment, I'll PM you details of the leasing companies we're looking at. :)
Maybe a cheaper solution would be to consider a Classroom / Network management solution which includes print credits / running cost facilities
You are not alone in the world, a fair few sites have lots of expensive to run smaller desktop printers that people love to send large print jobs to while ignoring the very expensive MFD designed to do such things :)
Your first step should be to evaluate various print/copy monitoring solutions, find one you like and is within your budget.
As a tip - If you do plan to put in MFD's and monitor copying as part of the project - Most MFD's are pretty generic these days in terms of speed and quality for everyday use. As some machines can have software running on them (taking advantage of the nice touch screen) then you should be aware that not all machines are equal when it comes to embedded solutions.
As for follow me (thats a trademark btw), It is sometimes referred to as "Pull Printing", "Push Printing" - The only "con" i can think of is people may forget they have prints in the queue.
We are moving towards kitting out our classrooms with Ricoh printers on a leased agreement. We currently have our photocopiers leased through them and they work pretty well.
also looking at upgrading our version of Papercut (from ng to MF) so we can intergrate the photocopying costs into the system.
The way I see it is you have several options:
1. Replace all your machines with 1 or 2 models across the board, looking carefully for the most economical models that can suit your needs.
2. Replace all your machines with a managed print contract, where you pay cost per page, and all the machines are leased to you by a single company.
3. Reduce the number of machines overall, and introduce a 'centralised' printing system where you have a single (or depending on volumes, more than 1) high volume printer to deal with it all. You could take this further and get a high volume mono printer/copier and another colour machine, to split the load. (We went down this route).
Team any and all of the above with a print management solution such as PaperCut MF/NG, introducing rules to disallow bulk printing on smaller machines etc... and you have a much more sustainable system.
Using option 3, of the 1.8 million copies done since July 2009, 1.5 million have been done on 3 machines (Ricoh MP7001, MPC2800 and a Riso machine). The mono prints cost us 0.33p each, and colour 3.6p. We also have colour printing restricted, and this has prevented around 100k colour pages being printed by staff needlessly, and about 30k mono prints by pupils on ICT suite printers.
Another thing to look at is the content of the printing. Does everything that is being printed need to be printed? Do you currently send out a newsletter each week, could this be done electronically? Do minutes of meetings get printed and put in pigeon holes? Could they be emailed instead? etc...
Agree with localzuk that option 3 is the way forward for most secondaries. Expect on average to halve your printer costs and at the same time probably provide a more reliable service.
run some print monitoring software in the back ground for 30 days - see who the trouble makers are :)
We used a MPS and it's worked pretty well for us up until now, and cut down on a heap of rubbish being printer. We've set a dialogue to come up before printing which gives the cost of the print job and asks users to confirm the print by entering department code. We then bill their department. Sorted!
We replaced 50+ printers with 10x MFD (purchased) controlled by PCounter with a service charge per page which covers toner, maintenance & repairs. We considered using biometric pull-printing but the extended site layout (5 buildings) was against us & additional hardware & software costs were too great. I spoke to our LA Print Manager who advised us & we used the LA 'preferred' supplier to gain access to LA economies of scale.
We currently have Sharp MFP's with PCounter from United Carlton and I cannot complain, we have 6 machines across 3 sites and some 1000 mobile workers in and out and it works like a dream.
I'm just completing phase two of this exact project. I went for Konica Minolta (direct from Knoica Minolta based out of Warrington) because they wiped the floor with the other companies on price. Feel free to contact me and you can pop and have a look at what I did. Even lower volume office printers are on the pay per click system because it is just easier.
Another requirement I had was scan to email so I have opted for a few MFDs. This has also made me unpopular with reprographics because people are now able to do their own photocopying (charged back to them via PCounter) and they are scared for their jobs :-s
From our experience - you won't save much (if any) money simply by changing from many disparate printers to a few MFDs.
Your school SLT will need to buy in to limits and/or charge back to departmental budgets to achieve a behaviour change.
Not true from my experience. Our printing budget dropped by half by switching from many individual printers to centralised MFDs!
Originally Posted by SpuffMonkey
I agree with a lot of the solutions and advice that has been given...
I would recommend looking at the Xerox EPS solution (Enterprise Print Services) which is a totally agnostic MPS solution.
It is being used all over the world and is currently the market leader in this area (MPS) with HP just behind in terms of deployment.
In terms of of Konica - they are desperate to get into this market and will be even doing deals that might not make them any money but gives them market exposure...
I would recommend looking at HP also...... although might be expensive.......