Well after the students have dashed down the hallways for the final time, there's still plenty of work to be done by administrators... have you considered some of the components of routine printing practices at your school(s)?
Summer vacation: For those in education lucky enough to experience it, it’s the perfect opportunity to recharge, rejuvenate, and return stronger. That final bell serves as a universal sound of relief for students, teachers, and administrators alike.
So how are you spending your summer break? In the spirit of coming back stronger, have you given any thought to your current print environment? Perhaps not.
Well after the students have dashed down the hallways for the final time, there's still plenty of work to be done by administrators. In between your family beach trip, your upcoming budget considerations, and routine scheduling of building maintenance, have you considered some of the components of routine printing practices at your school(s)? After all, print should be simple, secure, cost-effective, and waste-conscious.
What is Print Management?
Print Management is a software-driven solution that helps you develop best practices that control costs, streamline processes, and give your IT staff a break from tedious print-related tasks. It’s about gaining back time, costs, and ease of use. You’ve got the summer ahead to start game-planning. These 4 study questions will help get you started.
4 Study Questions for Your School’s Current Management of Print on Campus.
1. How easy is it for your users?
Printing’s a whole different ball game than it once was. With the introduction of smartphones, tablets, and Chromebooks, students and teachers alike come ready with any variety of devices. Of course, they'd all like to print with them.
BYOD Printing and Mobility Print (two features of the Print Management software PaperCut), allow modern schools to print on whatever device they're carrying from wherever they may find themselves on campus.
But, let's say you're a Science teacher in a shared staff room, finishing up a lesson plan over lunch that needs to be printed. With Find-Me Printing, there's no need to interrupt lunch to walk all the way back to your desk. Send to a single print queue and release at your leisure.
2. Are costs chewing into your bottom line?
That is which is never measured, never improves. Most teachers and students are at least partially guilty for unnecessary printing habits. These four features will help ensure people are printing what they need in the most cost-effective manner.
- Quotas: Setting a print allowance for students, staff, and entire departments creates more accountability. When printing isn’t unlimited, they’ll rethink hitting CTRL/CMD+P when they know there’s a cap.
- Payment gateways: If users need to print beyond their quota, you can recoup the additional costs by implementing print quotas with a third-party payment gateway. Then, the cost of anything printed over an allocated quota is directly covered by your faculty and students.
- Duplex: Also known as “print on both sides” - this simple but powerful fix instantly slashes paper usage. Configure pop-ups to prompt users to print double-sided, or (on some printers) automatically convert all documents to duplex printing.
- Grayscale: Color is pretty, but can be expensive. Limit this spend by printing grayscale (aka black and white) with either a gentle nudge or a default policy. Then just reserve color printing for specific purposes.
3. Does the software properly suit your print environment?
Print Management solutions has the potential to come with a hiccup for many schools: Will the software proposed suit the current print environment? Does it support all platforms equally, from operating systems to any number of multifunction printer brands?
As an example, PaperCut easily supports printing from Android, iOS, Windows, Mac, and Chromebook devices. It also supports all major copier/printer manufacturer brands.
Regarding domain infrastructure, PaperCut can sync and authenticate users from multiple
cloud and local directory services. This frees administrators up to manage users where they like, and also more easily move from a local AD to a cloud directory service.
- Google Cloud Directory
- Azure Active Directory
- Windows Active Directory
- Apple Open Directory
- Standard POSIX (PAM, NIS/Yellow Pages)
- Workgroup-only environments
4. Is Print Security even close to a priority?
This is a big question that often gets overlooked. While even in 2023, those tasked with security measures on campus don't often look at their copiers and printers, it should certainly be addressed.
A solid Print Security solution should cover the entire print job journey... from submission to collection. This begins with identifying who can print, what they can print, etc. It continues with security the printing process itself, and certainly protecting documents through audit trails and reports, watermarking and digital signatures, and print archiving.
These study questions are just to get you started. If you'd like to learn more about how Print Management + Datamax can help your campus fully optimize print activity, check out our free eBook, "K-12 Print Management: 12 Relevant Capabilities & Cost-saving Controls."