Plus Dane Housing is an organisation with a strong social purpose providing housing at below market cost to tenants and customers of modest means. As a responsible business, social value is at the core of everything they do. In the simplest terms, through the implementation of their social value framework they are looking to deliver greater improvement to the economy, society and the environment in neighbourhoods where they own and manage homes.
When Plus Dane were looking to renew their print contract, they were searching for a partner that could not only provide a range of hardware options but one that would audit current processes and recommend a more streamlined approach to embrace a move towards hybrid working. They needed a flexible and adaptable solution that would help them develop a strategy to reduce print and provide automated usage visibility to take control of costs across the business.
James Walmsley, Network & Infrastructure Manager, had previous experience of working with an integrated Managed Print Service (MPS) and knew the benefits it could bring to Plus Dane: “Our legacy print estate was outdated and lacking the functionality to create a change in culture across the business. We had printers that we didn’t need, we were printing too much and our devices didn’t have the necessary reporting tools to help us see where we needed to take action.”
As a member of the Procurement for Housing framework, Toshiba were one of the suppliers invited to tender for the Plus Dane contract. David Seymour, Business Development Manager for Toshiba described the process: “When we are responding to a tender, our approach is very different from other suppliers. We take the time to thoroughly review the customer’s current workflows and look at how we can improve efficiency and process, reduce costs and provide the essential reporting to implement changes in working practices. No two customers are alike, it always requires a tailored approach and for Plus Dane one of the critical factors was the ability to look at a rental option whilst they transitioned to their new offices in Albert Dock.”
Liking the approach, personnel and recommendations, Plus Dane selected Toshiba as the supplier of choice for their new MPS. Following an initial rental phase of Multi-Functional Products (MFP’s) as Plus Dane moved staff into their new offices, Toshiba began the implementation process across their sites. David Seymour explained the rationale behind the plans: “A full audit of the estate, and looking at Plus Dane’s hybrid working objective, enabled us to shrink down the number of printers and MFP’s by over half. We created centralised hubs where staff members could pop-in to the office to collect their print jobs, giving the essential flexibility for a culture of agile working.”
After a year of usage, Toshiba’s MFP’s with embedded PaperCut software, has given Plus Dane the reporting visibility to halve print costs and take the first steps towards their end-goal of a paperless office and reducing their carbon footprint across the business. James Walmsley talked about the functionality of the new hardware: “The new devices have allowed us to take back control of print across our sites, creating rules and workflows to reduce the amount of printed output, with staff embracing the change and increasing scanning activity to SharePoint. The full reporting suite enables us to split billing across departments down to an item level, identify high volume users and be responsive to take action where we can see peaks in activity. Plus, the automated toner replenishment removes the burden from the ordering process ensuring that we always have stock when needed.”
The MFP’s offer reliability for essential peace of mind, but being technically competent if there are any issues, Plus Dane are able to remote VNC into the devices, identify the problem and guide the user step by step to resolution. There is also the reassurance if the fault cannot be fixed, they can escalate the issue quickly and easily through the Toshiba ServiceNow portal for a rapid and proactive response.
James concluded on the project: “This is the smoothest transition we have ever experienced from a change in supplier, the Toshiba team really did take the pain out of the process for us. They recommended a loan/rental solution when we were transitioning the contract, and they organised all the moves process of the equipment when we were in a position to open our new office. Toshiba have continued to support us throughout the journey, helping us to offer the essential flexibility to staff for hybrid and remote working. The Toshiba hardware is reliable and has the necessary functionality we need to control and manage our printing, and most importantly has reduced our overhead costs. I can’t rate the team highly enough, and am looking forward to working together in the future.”