Tuesday, December 16, 2008

Print Management - Insight from Everything Channel's 2008 Print & Imaging Summit last week in Bonita Springs, Fla.

Print Management Did Make a Splash in '08 - What about 2009?

See this article:

What Big-Spend End Users Want From Print & Imaging

By Chad Berndtson, ChannelWeb
1:53 PM EST Tue. Dec. 09, 2008

The article is more specific, but here are some highlights -

Budgets low, economy bad -

"It's really important to our organizations to reduce the overall print spend," said Colleen Grant, manager of field support services at Interior Health Authority, Kelowna, B.C. "It's really difficult to manage that in any effective manner, and in 2009 we'll be analyzing what we should print and what we are printing."

Print units are still being purchased, but:

"We're down to looking at every single contract: here's how much we're paying you and how much less we can pay," said Anna Garrett, senior manager at Deloitte Services, of Wilton, Conn. "Our print and image fleet is probably about 4,500 printers or MFPs and about 700 copiers. We're looking to put more things together and reduce the number of devices. We've also done a horrible job of tracking what we print. In terms of spending, our copiers are always leased and our printers are always bought."

Success story:

"We've had all these functions centralized since 2001: all print, all mail, all our IT functions are under one organization, and we've seen some real benefits from that," said Lawrence McNish, director of document processing resources at American Family Mutual Insurance, of Madison, Wis.

"We're headed for our second generation of MFPs and we partner quite heavily with our finance area and do a lot of tracking of end usage. We used to have 2,400 printers and 460 copiers and we have maybe 800 and about 225 now. We're seeing reductions because we're rightsizing -- it's not just for our budget."

"Our copier and printer fleet from Xerox (NYSE:XRX) are all up for renewal this year," said Cynthia Meyer, senior buyer, IT, at Alliant Energy, a public utility holding company also headquartered in Madison.

"We have less budget to spend like everyone else, but I don't like leases because of what happens at the end of a lease. I don't like the lack of flexibility. I'd like to put something in place that allows me to rent. Plus, even beyond putting ink on paper, you have plenty of issues with document management."

Still measuring:

"We're trying to get our arms around that, and trying to figure out our strategic direction," said Kieran O'Reilly, lead business systems analyst at UPS, Mahwah, N.J.

"We're not looking to spend a lot of money -- basically to keep the lights on," added Greg Matkovich, strategic sourcing manager at The Home Depot, Atlanta. "We don't even know what we have, to be honest. Corporate [offices are] the Wild West, and we're looking to do a lot more self-assessment."

Direct, Vendor, or VARs?

"On our printer side, we had HP (NYSE:HPQ) and Lexmark both, and they're bought through resellers," said Greg Cunningham, manager of service strategies and optimization at IBM (NYSE: IBM) Canada, of Victoria, B.C. "It's my observation, though, that HP and Lexmark support the reseller and not necessarily the client. I don't see [client support] happening."

A great deal of good information was shared at the summit - and it looks like Managed Print Services was discussed in detail, and is in place or top of mind for some of the "big" companies.

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