Southern Seminary’s retail printers and print shop devices needed an upgrade. Following a complete overhaul with Sharp, the Seminary improved performance and functionality across all print operations.
Business Environment Challenges
Southern Baptist Theological Seminary (Southern Seminary) enrolls more than 4,000 students annually, including those attending its two graduate schools. In early 2015, the Seminary identified the need to update and improve printing across the campus for students, faculty and staff. At the time, the Seminary deployed a mix of retail printers that were out of date, and unable to produce the quality and functionality that was needed. In addition to being dated, the student devices were coin-operated.
Southern Seminary also offers print services via its print shop to community members from local nonprofit organizations, alumni and ministries. However, at the time, the print quality was low, output was slow and finishing and color capabilities were limited. Improving print capabilities would not only ensure a great experience for the students and faculty, but also deliver a great experience to those whom the seminary supports with print services.
In response to a seminary-issued RFP, Miller Document Solutions, the local Sharp authorized dealer, proposed a new solution that included Sharp document systems and print management software to upgrade campus printing. The dealer also suggested light production devices for the seminary’s print shop to support larger print jobs, outside jobs and communication jobs, such as marketing flyers and booklets, from across campus.
Selected for the quality of technology and customer support offered, Miller Document Solutions helped Southern Seminary install a mix of 45 Sharp MFPs dispersed throughout the campus. Miller also installed one Pro Series Color Document System with external Fiery® FS100 Color Print Server, and one 90 ppm monochrome MFP in the print shop to support their move to printing more work inhouse, on demand, and to improve overall quality and faster turnaround times.
With the new document systems that provide students and faculty with a simpler way to print their jobs, students can reliably print anywhere on campus with improved quality and easier accessibility.
“By Eliminating the need to insert coins, students can release print jobs using their username and password and charge it to a preloaded account balance,” says Ben Ward, Retail Manager, Southern Seminary. “All the Sharp MFPs feature a user-friendly touch screen panel that is much more intuitive for our students and faculty as well.”
Some of the additional functionality on the Sharp MFPs include: double-sided printing, finishing options, insert options and a variety of orientations. Full-color printing is also available to students via a centrally located full-color device.
The Southern Seminary print shop has also witnessed great performance improvements. “We have realized two significant benefits from the Sharp production equipment—the ability to control color with the spectrophotometer, and improved turnaround times on all print jobs,” continues Ward. “Our full-color output is far superior to what we could deliver previously, and large print jobs that require additional finishing work are now a breeze.”
The previous print equipment could not handle the volume of jobs necessary for the print shop to adequately serve the community. The Sharp Color Document System with external Fiery® FS100 Color Print Server has significantly sped output (student jobs are completed the same day, while outside print jobs are processed according to the job size and quoted timing), and enhanced the Seminary’s print services portfolio. Southern Seminary can now deliver advanced finishing options, such as full-bleed color and poster-size prints, that they were previously unable to support. Booklets, flyers for conferences and bound material for student research are now among the print shop’s service offerings, helping the students and community organizations improve quality while reducing costs.
Further, Southern Seminary better serves the print needs of those within its community.
“We now have the ability to offer lower print rates via the print shop, and also give our community members a personal touch,” says Ward. “Miller Document Solutions worked with us to achieve print cost savings as part of the overall solution upgrade. From our perspective, Sharp offered the flexibility to meet our needs, and Miller was able to deliver that.”
With the help of Miller and the advanced Sharp solution, Southern Seminary has reduced downtime on all printing devices by working with a proactive partner to provide the necessary supplies and maintenance to keep the print devices up and running at all times.
“Our full-color output is far superior to what we could deliver previously, and large print jobs that require additional finishing work are now a breeze.”