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Case Study: St. Louis Public Schools

School district gives Ricoh high marks for our efficient hardware, software and print center plan.

St. Louis Schools logo
 
 

Challenge

 

Challenge

 
St. Louis Schools mail slots

Due to woeful neglect by the company running the Resource Center, St. Louis Public School’s (SLPS) district-wide print and mail center, costs kept rising and equipment constantly broke down. Plus, there were:

  • Open reams of paper, litter and broken equipment everywhere.
  • Obsolete supplies and inefficient organization.
  • No clear standards and discipline for submitting and accepting print jobs.

As a result, customers commonly suffered lost or incorrect orders, and often had to rely on outside print vendors instead. The situation wasn’t much better for the Resource Center’s mailroom, which:

  • Wasn't maintaining U.S. Postal Service permits.
  • Wasn't keeping an audit trail of district funds.
  • Was unnecessarily sending District letters first class

Separately, SLPS sent out an RFP for 240 new MFPs to be deployed across the district in order to cut costs, improve processes and become greener. While meeting with school officials, we learned about all of the problems plaguing the Resource Center. We won the MFP contract due to our hardware and software capabilities — as well as our ideas for streamlining and improving district-wide printing operations.

 
 

"We now have better, faster, more sophisticated printing technology — at a cost that’s 25% less than what we were paying before — and we’re saving money on postage."

Executive Director of Technology Services
St. Louis Public Schools

 
 
 

Solution

 

Solution

 
 

During the hardware installation, we determined that the district’s more expensive A3 devices, which were capable of printing ledger-sized documents, were being underutilized.

 
 
We recommended that they replace many of those printers with lower-cost A4 devices, which were ideal for the majority of letter-sized jobs the district generated — while still allowing the Resource Center to handle any oversized jobs that did come in.

Once the hardware was in place, we installed a wide array of software technology, including:

Icon that represents NSI Autostore.

NSi™ AutoStore®-

enabled school badge authentication at each device, which allowed for improved security, charge-backs and the ability to send jobs to any district device.
Icon that represents Autostore Mobility.

AutoStore Mobility,

which let teachers post assignments to the district’s Microsoft® SharePoint® portal and allowed students to submit their work electronically via the AutoStore app.
Icon that represents Fax Machines.

RightFax®,

whichreplaced the district’s prior fax solution. Instead of being tied to only one location, users could now fax from any MFP connected to the network.

To handle the Resource Center’s issues, the Ricoh Managed Services team:

  • Cleaned and organized the center for better production flow, finishing, quality check, pickup and delivery.
  • Created a standard print request form to help produce jobs faster and without errors.
  • Established guidelines on what jobs the center could accept.
  • Enforced a policy requiring payment for personal copy requests

We also investigated the district’s USPS account and discovered tens of thousands of dollars in an idle return mail account. So we worked to get the funds transferred into SLPS’s account and incorporated a nonprofit permit number on the district’s indicia for future mailings.


 
 

About St. Louis Public Schools

Comprising 27,000 students and 4,000 teachers in 75 locations, plus 2 administrative offices, St. Louis Public Schools is the largest K-12 school district in Missouri.

 
 

Result

Installation occurred during the seven months leading up to the beginning of the next academic year. To ensure successful operation of all the new hardware and software solutions, we were onsite three weeks before school began to help train the faculty and staff.

Once in operation, the district enjoyed faster, more sophisticated printing technology that cost 25 percent less than their previous devices. Plus, they saved money on postage. In fact, just one 27,000-piece back-to-school mailing netted an $8,000 savings by using a nonprofit rate instead of first class.


Our next task for the district is implement a FortisBlue® workflow. The solution electronically captures, stores and organizes documents, data, images and audio files, which will provide easier information access, improved collaboration and more efficient business processes throughout the district.