Unified approach to print brings savings for Essex County Council

Essex County Council’s (ECCs) existing print solution was fragmented making it difficult to deliver efficiencies and savings to the Authority.

Essex County Council

The requirement

Essex County Council’s existing print solution was fragmented making it difficult to deliver efficiencies and savings to the Authority. This also limited potential for improvements that could be made by taking a more unified approach, including use of technology and innovation. The Council decided to appoint a single strategic supplier under a relevant CCS Print Framework who would manage their print services and work proactively to support the delivery of:

  • Sustainable savings
  • A quality customer service solution with design and print experts on hand to offer both technical and savings advice
  • Deliver economies of scale by working proactively with stakeholders using the mandated print contract
  • A high standard of environmental awareness and responsibility; actively encouraging the use of environmentally friendly products and solutions
  • Develop a local supply chain to support the Essex economy
  • A resilient eBusiness solution which would form a platform for future development

The solution

CDS was appointed as the Council’s strategic print partner under the CCS Framework

CDS offered a holistic solution to unify all the Council’s print services. The results were reduced administration, improved purchasing efficiency and cost savings substantiated by detailed management information.

The steps CDS took to deliver this solution included TUPE transferring the Council’s reprographics and design staff, integrating them with existing CDS print managers to create a new on-site team to handle all the Council’s print, reprographics and design requirements.

CDS equipped and staffed a modern on-site digital reprographics facility to work alongside the print management team removing any previous conflict of interest between the two independent operations.

The concept of a triage service introduced by CDS ensures that every job is assessed and directed to the most appropriate and efficient production route to deliver best value.

The results

  • Unified system saved £500k in the first year and now delivers cost savings to the Council of more than 10% pa – equating to £250k pa
  • 75% of the available print work is placed with local suppliers who met CDS’ high standards and fulfilled our stringent vetting process
  • Consolidated buying power means more competitive prices
  • CDS’ expert advice and a ‘can do’ attitude ensures jobs are delivered to quality, on time and to budget
  • CDS provides a resilient service – if one printer is unable to meet a deadline, other vetted printers are on hand to take over
  • By taking a strategic approach, CDS works with the Council in a true open, honest and transparent partnership towards shared goals
  • The contract provides users with a more efficient and rewarding experience when buying print and related services

For further information contact:

David Burton, CCS Director at CDS

Tel: +44 (0)800 138 4308 
Mob: 07710 533 615
Email: david.burton@cds.co.uk

For information on the CCS Framework Contract – see the following link:


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CDS streamlined our print services, helping us to work much more efficiently in this field, which has resulted in significant cost savings to the council every year. We have also been able to share these services with our public sector partners, which means we can contribute to a much wider goal – advancing cost-effective production methods across Local Government in general.

Phil Sweeting MCIPS, Category Manager

Essex County Council

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