Wednesday, 29 May 2013

New sustainable print service being developed for staff

My sustainable print (MSP) is the new printing service being developed for staff, ready to be launched later this year. It will deliver a uniform network of fast, efficient multi-functional print devices offering colour and mono print, scanning and photocopying.

Progress Report

A proof of concept exercise was successfully completed in CiCS and this is being followed by pilots currently running in HR, School of Languages and Cultures and the Management School A further pilot for Materials Science and Engineering is in the planning stages. Reports on these exercises will be drawn up and shared so we can all see how the new service impacts on academic and professional services staff

The project is currently in design phase. Our project sponsor, Bob Rabone, is keen to involve staff in the project and that is why we have just completed a university wide staff consultation through the departmental print champions. We want the design of MSP to be driven by the business needs of those who will use it - you.

Once consultation is complete, and we know exactly how many print devices we need to serve the University, we will tender for the hardware and supporting systems. The final stage will be  implementation in which we will liaise with print champions in each department to ensure MSP is implemented in a way that meets your business needs.

About the Service

The My Sustainable Print service is built upon a network of uniform print devices for the whole University averaging around one device per 25 staff. Using uniform devices offers huge efficiency gains in terms of maintenance, development and consumables.

Each device offers fast, secure, black and white and colour printing, copying and scanning.

Devices come in three flavours:
  • Floor standing MFDs, four paper trays, offering A4 and A3 print, copy, scan
  • Floor standing MFPs, three paper trays, offering A4 print copy and scan
  • Desk standing MFPs, one paper tray, offering A4 print, copy and scan

Printing is two step:
  1. First you print your file to a print queue.
  2. Next you go to any printer, near your office, near a colleague’s office, near a meeting room etc, and you use your UCard to list all your print jobs and select the ones you wish to print.

Print jobs stay in the queue for 36 hours so you can print one day then collect your work on the next day. Your print jobs cannot be released without your UCard and so will not appear at a printer unless you are there to release them.

Departmental printing will be supported by your departmental print champion. If a printer breaks there will be arrangements in place for it to be fixed. In the meantime you will be able to collect your printed work from any other printer.

Details are being finalised, but it has been agreed in principle that printing costs will be met by a central print budget rather than individual departmental budgets.

Frequently Asked Questions

Will I be expected to give up my personal printer?
Maximum benefit will be achieved if staff willingly give up their office printers in favour of the more efficient shared printers. The vision of the project is for staff to view printing devices as a shared resource rather than a personal resource. The proposal is to replace hundreds of old, inefficient printers sited on individual desks with a smaller number of top of the range, high-speed, high-quality, secure print, copy and scan facilities which all staff can access as a departmental resource.

How will the University/Faculty/Department benefit from this new network of expensive printers?
The three key drivers for this project are:
  • improved user experience
  • environmental (likewise, 100% take-up could lead to an annual carbon reduction of 19 tonnes and energy savings from print of 80%); and
  • financial (100% take up across the University could realise £1M savings per annum)

The most significant is the carbon reduction as the government has imposed challenging targets on all universities for carbon reduction and if we fail to meet these targets we will be heavily fined.

Are savings fully economically costed?
It is recognised that the savings quoted are not fully economically costed and do not take into account the time of senior staff walking to a printer and back. However, it would be equally difficult to cost the time of senior staff looking after their own printers, setting up new printers, arranging for toner and paper to be replaced, acquiring new drivers for new IT services and operating systems, and arranging repairs and maintenance should any faults occur.

How far will I be expected to walk to pick up my printing?
You may need to walk a short distance to pick up your printing. However, a trip to the printer can offer a positive break from staring at the computer screen, standing up, taking a short walk along the corridor, bumping into colleagues and collecting printout secure in the knowledge that the printer would work, it would be full of toner and paper, each printed page would be printed quickly and quietly and no-one else could possibly have access to your printed work.

When will the new devices be available?
The current expectation is that the devices will be installed between September 2013 and early 2014. An implementation timetable will be developed for each department. Implementation may happen quickly for some departments, whilst others may prefer a longer-term phased approach.

What will happen to my old printer?
Released office printers will repurposed as follows:
  • compatible modern printers will be installed as shared departmental printers
  • good quality incompatible printers will be distributed to schools and charities
  • old inefficient printers will be correctly disposed of.