College Planning & Management

AUG 2012

College Planning & Management is the information resource for professionals serving the college and university market. Covering facilities, security, technology and business.

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IN THE KNOW ENHANCING + ENGAGING + CONNECTING PLANNING & MANAGEMENT AUGUST 2 012 THIS MONTH 51 EMERGING TECHNOLOGY 52 TECH WATCH 53 TECH UPGRADE Select Print Managing copiers, printers, and peripherals can be challenging, but there's help out there. by KAREN SPRING A lthough student life at colleges and universities has evolved from using typewriters and desktop computers to smartphones and iPads for those Shakespearean essays and mathematical theorems, there is one thing that seems to be a necessity on cam- pus: the printer. Students might have the latest gadgets, but they usually don't have access to a printer in their residence halls. The college most often has to furnish such devices — which also include peripherals and copiers — or students need to buy their own printers for usage in their dorm rooms. However, purchasing printers and copi- ers can be a really daunting task. Buyers can fi nd the entire process in obtaining the peripherals to be a challenge. Plus, how does a university, which is already working with limited funds, acquire the print technology it needs without maxing out its budget? Optimizing Usage With Audits Many universities have a slew of vari- ous printers and peripherals from different manufacturers, making it a diffi cult task to manage and maintain these devices. Because manageability and reliability can be challenging, it is advisable to conduct a print audit. The key step is an optimization pro- cess, which helps to determine if the right devices are already in place to handle the workload that the school has. Jeff Metze, Lexmark's industry manager for educa- tion, explains their process. "We can meet with the college and review its current list of devices. Schools have to ensure that they are getting the maximum potential from the existing hardware they have. We have found that in most environments, about two-thirds of the present printer equip- ment is underutilized. In those cases, it's critical that the customer optimizes its resources." An issue that affects many large univer- sities is that much of a college's infrastruc- ture is departmentalized. Thus, various departments within the school have their own sets of computers, printers, and devices, which may not always encourage a cohesive network. This is where proactive management comes into play. Instead of waiting for a printer to break down and go offl ine for a period of days, routine main- tenance can make a world of difference. PHOTO COURTESY OF WEPA PRINT UTILITY. Print kiosks, like those at the University of Maryland and the University of Arizona, are beneficial to both students and the school. This new wave in printing technology allows for advertising revenue for the college and service and upkeep through the kiosk provider. Consistently maintaining the print devices ensures less downtime and less expense in the lifecycle for such equipment. AUGUST 2012 / COLLEGE PLANNING & MANAGEMENT 49

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