Staff Printing and Print Management Policy

1. Purpose and Scope

The purpose of this policy is to support the implementation of a cost effective and efficient print management strategy at the University of Birmingham.

This policy gives guidance on how the University will allocate printing devices - Multi-Functional Devices or MFDs (providing photocopying, printing and scanning) and Print-Only Desktops - to Colleges and Professional Services Departments.

This policy also sets the guidelines on the best use of printing devices, in order to demonstrate environmental responsibility by reducing the number of personal printing devices on campus, reducing the amount of energy consumed, and amount of paper/other print consumables produced.

This policy applies to all Staff of the University. Please note that Student print/copy/scan requirements are met by the chargeable use of MFD devices in the Libraries and other open access student areas, and managed separately.

2. General Policy Statement. Purpose and Scope

In order to operate efficiently the University must ensure that its assets are procured, deployed and managed effectively. The following key elements will govern this print policy:

The Managed Print Service is operated by Konica Minolta. MFDs and Print-Only Desktops are covered under a central contract under which the University has entered into a sole supplier agreement. All MFDs are leased under this agreement. Essential supplies – such as toner cartridges and staples – are covered as part of the cost of the lease and there is therefore no additional cost for such items.

Any faults or requests for staples/other consumables should be made to the Konica Minolta hotline: 0871 574 7200 (option 2 for consumables, option 3 for hardware issues). A dedicated Konica Minolta on-site engineer is available to quickly react to problems as soon as hardware issues are reported. 

Toners are automatically ordered and delivered to the provided toner delivery address.  Colleges and Professional Services Departments are responsible for ordering and replenishing appropriate paper stock/staples locally as well as fitting/recycling toners.

ID card authentication (known as pull-print or follow-me print) is utilised to support information security by providing secure and confidential printing. This allows Staff the flexibility to print anywhere on campus or other University sites, as well as minimising paper waste by only releasing the print job when at the device.

In order to further reduce paper/energy consumption and Co2 emissions, MFD/Print-Only Desktops are set to maximum power saving configurations as well as defaulted to A4, black and white and double sided. The user can override those defaults for jobs where A3, colour print or single sided are required. 

UNDER NO CIRCUMSTANCES, DEVICES SHOULD BE MOVED BY UNIVERSITY STAFF NOR ANY CONFIGURATION CHANGE REQUESTS MADE DIRECTLY TO THE ON-SITE ENGINEER.

3. Recommended Printing/Copying Behaviour

To minimise both environmental impact and cost to the University, the following print behaviours are recommended:

Printing jobs should only be released at the Multi-Functional Device if required, and deleted if not. Pull-printing not retrieved after 72 hours will be automatically deleted from print queues.

Colour should only be used when strictly required. It should be noted that a colour copy is charged regardless of whether a full colour page or just a small colour logo or strapline is printed.

Print-Only Desktop Printers, if available, should only be used for small range printing requirements

The Central Print Unit should be used for any multiple copy print jobs that have 200 pages or more (see next section).

4. Central Print

The Central Print Unit is there to support high volume, multiple copy printing and to provide specialist finishing facilities. https://intranet.birmingham.ac.uk/external/creative-media/central-print/About-Central-Print.aspx

Printing requests must be sent to the Unit electronically, in a PDF or other printable format. The Central Unit is happy to help with any job, however small, but should be particularly used for the following:

  • All mono or colour print jobs over 200 sheets
  • All print jobs requiring specialist finishing (such as thermal or spiral binding)
  • All print jobs requiring inserts.

It should also be noted that, because the Central Print Unit has the best quality equipment, they will also produce the best quality output and the most professionally finished documents.

5. SafeQ Software and recharging

In order to fully manage all print output across the University, print management software called SafeQ is utilised. The software enables the control and release of print jobs to users, and also allows for the collection and reporting of management information, such as how many pages are being printed, where and by whom/which department and visibility of other resource utilisation, such as power consumption.   

All printing costs are managed centrally using SafeQ, and are recharged to Colleges and Professional Services, based on actual usage, on a monthly basis.

6. Managed Print Service Fleet (Additional Devices/Device Moves)

There should be at least one MFD per building, and for larger buildings there should be at least one MFD per floor. Staff should have a MFD device within 50m of their desk.

In order for the Managed Print Service to operate all MFDs/Print-Only Desktops need to be networked, and exact location and details of each device recorded in Konica Minolta systems. It is therefore imperative, that any required changes (additional devices or move of devices) are requested through your College or Professional Service Key Contact and so that they are managed following our agreed process with Konica Minolta.

All new MFDs/Print-Only Desktops requests must be approved by the College Approver before being sent to Procurement (See ‘Managed Print Service Page for ‘Managed Print Service Models’). The Procurement division will then confirm if/when an additional device can be sourced and contact Konica Minolta for the installation. 

The University encourages the use of MFDs wherever possible, and discourages the policy of purchasing an individual Print-Only Desktop for a single computer. Procurement will only approve purchase of Print-Only Desktops after assessment that the MFD provision is NOT suitable (e.g. insufficient space or on physical disability grounds). Schools and individual departments should bear this in mind when making their requests.

MFDs/Print-Only Desktops move requests must also be approved by the College Approver before being sent to Procurement. The Procurement division will then confirm if/when the move can take place, and contact Konica Minolta for the installation.

PLEASE NOTE THAT INCOMPLETE REQUESTS WILL NOT BE PROCESSED AND THAT IT IS IMPERATIVE THAT THE REQUESTER ENGAGES WITH THEIR LOCAL IT DEPARTMENT TO ENSURE THAT REQUEST FORM IS FULLY COMPLETE  (See ‘Managed Print Service Page for ‘Additional Device Request Form’ and ‘Device Move Request Form’).  

7. Specialist Printing

Under exceptional circumstances, Procurement may advise that the printing requirements cannot be met by the Managed Print Service (e.g. Laboratory Printing Devices or other specific printing requirements such as specialised forms and labels). Procurement will in this case advise the most suitable alternative procurement route, and record the printing device as ‘Specialist Device’ to signify it has been authorised that it falls outside the Managed Print Service. 

The University will ONLY continue to provide IT support and consumables for ‘Specialist Devices’ i.e. Print Devices authorised by Procurement to fall outside the Konica Minolta Managed Print Service.

ANY FURTHER QUERIES, INCLUDING CONFIGURATION CHANGES (change of Users Groups, change of Toner Delivery Address …) should be sent to mpsrequests@contacts.bham.ac.uk