Finding the right IT solution can have a major impact on an organisation. That was what staff at Monmouthshire County Council discovered when they transformed their printing process and saved the council up to £30,000.
Heather Probert, office manager for the council said: “Our aim was to update an aging fleet of copiers, reduce the volume of printing and give staff the ability to work from various bases. After reviewing the printers and photocopiers on each site we discovered they were supplied by different organisations and managed by various individuals."
Originally, we had been unaware of a managed print solution but when XMA suggested one to us it changed our outlook completely.
XMA presented the answer by installing more than 30 HP and SafeCom multi-function printers across the county’s offices with an ability for staff to access print jobs on whichever device they chose.
A more agile system
A major advantage was that the XMA process allowed Monmouthshire to support greater flexibility for staff. Mrs Probert said: “We were looking to reduce our office accommodation from a central building to multiple smaller offices. The managed print solution enabled us to allow more flexibility to workers so they could work from a variety of desks, offices or even from home.
“Before, we sat at fixed desks with a computer, hard drive and printer. Now, at our current headquarters we have around 200 desks and our 400 staff can set up laptops at any of them, send requests to print regardless of where they are working and collect it from any printer. It’s a big part of the council’s wider agile working agenda.”
Part of the move towards greater agility was to allow the council to become more efficient – an aim the new printing solution can help deliver.
Mrs Probert said: “Our goal was to reduce the volume of printing – something we had wanted to do for quite some time. With the XMA system, we can place the printers strategically across the organisation and staff must walk to the nearest one to activate their print jobs rather than sit at their desks printing away incessantly.
“XMA’s managed print solution is much more efficient and productive for us. We believe we will save £30,000 over three years now we no longer provide and maintain desktop printers. Our volume of printing is much lower, our storage costs are significantly reduced and all consumables are the same brand so recharging can be handled centrally and in bulk which also gives economies of scale."
Mrs Probert added that the single point of control for managing the organisation’s printing - rather than being handled in a piecemeal way by different members of staff - was immeasurably helpful. “It’s much easier and more efficient and far smoother to manage than the old system.”
The benefits of an experienced technical provider
The ability to tap into XMA’s technical knowledge was also invaluable. Mrs Probert said: “The XMA team’s communication was excellent. They consulted about what we wanted, looked at our printing needs and put forward what they thought was the best solution.“Our printing processes have significantly changed the approach to thinking about how we print and what we print. Thanks to SafeCom – the print management software - we can access reports on which documents are being printed and make decisions based on that."
Had we not gone through XMA, I don't think we would have recognised the benefits of changing to this particular printing strategy.
An ongoing relationship
The relationship between XMA and the council is also a crucial factor in the success of the project. Mrs Probert commented: “We are now in regular contact with XMA, it’s easy to get hold of someone and their support is first class. We can replace consumables ourselves butanything more complex means that an XMA engineer will be on site quickly to carry out an excellent job.”
We have become used to this service so much that it's difficult to remember what it was like previously. We have plans to continue to work with XMA in the future to ensure the managed print solution remains robust.