Intelligent print management helps A1 to save costs and simplify processes

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Intelligent print management helps A1 to save costs and simplify processes

Intelligent print management helps A1 to save costs and simplify processes

With more than 24 million customers in eight countries, the Telekom Austria Group is a leading provider of telecommunication services in Central and Eastern Europe. A1 is the largest company within the Group, accounting for nearly two thirds of the total turnover. As market leader in Austria, A1 is the only operator to offer its 3.3 million customers product packages comprising landline, mobile communication, internet and TV options. Accordingly, the amount of internal communication between the 8,500 employees is significant, with paper continuing to play an important role. Using a managed print solution from Konica Minolta, A1 was able to consolidate its entire printing system and simplify its processes.


Modern print management – the strategy


The question of how to save costs within printing is not a new topic for A1. "Saying 'I will just print this one page' does not sound like much, but if hundreds of employees do that every day, it amounts to significant costs over the year. One step in the right direction is reducing the number of workplace printers and creating central printing stations, in order to save costs for ongoing service as well. Powerful A3 devices are only worth the investment once you reach a certain printing output,” Hermann Juricka, CEO Workplace Planning and Preparation, points out. A major step in achieving this aim was the installation of a thought-out print management system, based on intelligent hardware and software from Konica Minolta.


The technical challenges


A1 uses 267 flexible printing systems, such as the bizhub C364e/C368 multifunctional A3 colour systems and the bizhub 283/284e multifunctional black-and-white systems. The print management software employed throughout the company is the accounting solution SafeQ, which carries out the cost control and invoicing for every print job. In addition, the software can be used to control secure access to documents. Employees can use their regular access cards for authentication at the printing system, meaning they can collect their prints or scans quickly and, above all, securely. Individual devices were also equipped with Autostore for scan workflows and the SiteAudit software can be used to control the central fleet management.


Convincing employees with the right information


In order to convince the employees within the teams to give up workplace printers and test the Konica Minolta system in real use, a pilot project was implemented initially. This made it possible to create reference values while simultaneously increasing employee motivation through positive experiences. Only a realistic analysis of the current situation creates a basis for improvement. In order to support the introduction of print management early on, A1 managers as well as staff repre­sentatives and regional IT coordinators were informed of the benefits and functions of intelligent data management.


The numbers speak for themselves: While using individual workplace printers, some devices only had a monthly output of 20 pages – however, the normal service and electricity costs apply regardless of the number of pages printed. Oper­ating such devices is inefficient.


The print management solution now supports A1 in maintain­ing an overview of how many documents are needed and printed on how many devices. That makes it possible to re­search and optimise the electricity and toner consumption as well as service intervals for each printer. This change is much more representative of A1's company values: Greater connec­tivity, greater efficiency, increased 

security and reduced costs.


23% printing cost savings


Thanks to the Konica Minolta print management system, A1 was able to cut nearly 2,000 printers. Print jobs that are sent mistakenly or are no longer needed can be deleted quickly and easily. This function alone resulted in savings of 23% with regard to printing costs. It also enabled the company to reduce waste paper and disposal costs, and realistically evalu­ate the often underestimated costs for standby operation and maintenance.


Another important feature is the automatic toner order func­tion. It helps to save time in daily business, as service intervals can be planned and coordinated much more efficiently.


The path to the future


“I do not believe in no longer using paper in offices as a short-term target, but rather in optimising existing processes,” Andreas Svirak-Raffl explains the path into the future. When requirements for internal workflows increase, processes need to be redefined. That will not be limited to just printing services in future. “Processes and specifications need to change, but statutory provisions can prove to be an obstacle in some cases,” says Andreas Svirak-Raffl.


The future is pointing towards a document management system at department level – with internal specialist areas as driving forces: Departments such as Human Resources in particular need to scan large numbers of records. An archiving system is needed, as these documents are also stored in the SAP master data. A document management system helps in maintaining an overview.


The right partner


In order to guarantee the successful implementation of the new strategies, A1 needed a reliable partner like Konica Minolta.

“The good cooperation with and support from the Konica Minolta team were significant factors for success. We were always able to rely on the promises made and adherence to deadlines was assured,” summarises Hermann Juricka.


  • Reduction of printing and service costs
  • Increased availability and transparency
  • Simple operation
  • Greater scope of functions


  • Moving away from workplace printers to central printing stations
  • Offering greater document security, transparency and a reduction in running service costs


  • 267 multifunctional colour and black-and-white printing systems enable individual and needs-based use
  • Print management system offers further functions and relieves the IT department of routine tasks