The new year’s arrival brings the perfect opportunity for your school, college or university to audit its use of technology, ensuring its operations in all areas are bringing optimum efficiency and value-for-money, while maintaining vital security.
One such operation is print, and when it comes to print solutions, few suppliers have a product range as all-embracing as UTAX.
Paul Young, Head of Technical Services at UTAX (UK) Ltd (pictured below) has identified key areas where education establishments can save money in 2016…
Q. When considering total cost of ownership what are the hidden costs of print often missed?
A. Duplicated print and unnecessary colour printing are well-documented areas of wastage. However, many UTAX customers tell us that simple use of space is one of the biggest hidden costs that are overlooked. For example, with the average four-drawer filing cabinet taking up about one square metre and holding approximately two linear metres of records, it’s easy to see that even a small archive room housing the retained records of hundreds of students could easily be using the rental equivalent of £5,000 annually – and far more if temporary buildings are additionally deployed.
Q. How can implementing a managed print service reduce print costs?
A. Effective school, college or university management is all about juggling resources, both in terms of finances and staff. Managed print services therefore score highly by helping to reduce costs and introducing efficiencies. Benefits such as automatic replenishment of toner, hassle-free scheduled servicing and monitoring of print output where devices can be interchanged if one’s being used less than another, are all attractive. And that’s before you even start looking at intelligent three-tier pricing, one invoice billing, management of mono and colour output and the cost-saving benefits of follow-me printing, which reduces duplication of print jobs.
Q. How can establishments ensure they are purchasing the most suitable and cost-effective MPS for their needs?
A. When the time comes to review a document and print management contract, UTAX recommends establishments choose a specialist MPS provider who will carry out a print audit as this will highlight where the main efficiencies and cost savings can be made. We see many cases where print fleets have been successfully reduced in number and where establishments have taken advantage of the new, smarter, more secure and functional software that can be tailored to manage and reduce their print output.
Away from cost savings, security will be a key element of printing operations in 2016 as BYOD adoption continues to rise in our schools, colleges and universities. The recent security breaches at TalkTalk and Vodafone highlight the need for a belt and braces approach to security and data encryption, but an often-overlooked aspect of this is the information sent to print. With the increase in BYOD, data security has become essential and UTAX’s security pack includes options to encrypt the information on a device to prevent unauthorised access. What’s more, UTAX dealers will always carry out a security check as standard when installing a new document management system to ensure there are no gaps in a network.
Top 10 tips to getting the most from your print solutions
1.) To reduce costs and improve management efficiencies, consider MPS with three tier billing.
2.) Always remember – a digital printer is essentially a PC with a large hard drive and memory, processing data that can remain on the device. Without relevant security software is vulnerable to cyber attack.
3.) UTAX Assist software allows multiple documents to be quickly and efficiently scanned and uploaded directly into the SIMS Document Management Server alongside a student’s record, doing away with the need for hard copy document storage.
4.) Your internal print rooms may also house older machines which generally have larger footprints and could be replaced with smaller, more efficient devices.
5.) Printer downtime cost is a key area sometimes underestimated. Choosing reliable print hardware backed up by efficient remote monitoring and experienced technical teams, resolving an issue with the minimum of fuss, requiring the minimum of intervention from internal staff, brings huge benefits.
6.) App-based software solutions, available on the latest multi-function printers, can revolutionise the way schools, universities and colleges work.
7.) Look for a supplier with a track record for integrating top-quality technology seamlessly and backing it up with expert technical support and training. Technology is only fit for purpose if installed and used correctly.
8.) Paper remains an integral part of an education establishment’s everyday life, so you need to be able to maximise the benefits of digital workflows and print by ensuring it’s an integral part of your campus-wide IT thinking.
9.) In schools, ensure pupils can only print during class time, saving energy and cost.
10.) UTAX (UK)’s wide range of A4 and A3 printers and multi-functional systems, as well as their software solutions, are specifically developed for the education sector.