The unexpected benefits of well implemented print management

Business meeting

You want to say ‘no’. No to more cuts to vital services because of budget pressures. Yet relentlessly, Local Authorities and the wider public sector need to reduce costs and gain control of budgets.

Despite ‘knowing’ this many organisation are still haemorrhaging money through a lack of strategy around optimising print and digital communications channels. 

One of the answers is to bring in a specialist print management company. A well-implemented print management solution will do more than save money. It will help you gain control of your branding and your budget. It will improve communications within your organisation.  

The ancillary and often unexpected benefits include freeing up valuable staff time to focus on core activities, removing the worry and mitigating risk. A print management strategy will make life easier for staff and help your organisation to make a positive difference to your employees and your customers.

Let’s look at how this can happen through the eyes of a manager in a council.

Joe’s story

Joe the Council’s previous print room manager and now, newly appointed as Print Contract Manager recalls the days when his organisation had its own internal Print Room which took responsibility for the provision of all print.  

Those were very challenging days – nothing was turned away regardless of whether the little unit had the capability, resources and equipment to properly undertake and complete the work. He particularly remembers the very tight deadlines and the frequent criticisms regarding the quality of work he and his team worked hard to deliver. He was regularly frustrated at spending an inordinate amount of time with colleagues who only had a very basic knowledge of print, processes and had great expectations for their product, which he often had to moderate.  

Worst of all, he was under pressure from his HoD and the Finance Director to keep costs under control through diminishing budgets and lack of funds which meant the team was kept to an absolute minimum, investment was non-existent and ongoing equipment maintenance not a priority. It was a case of trying to deliver the same (or more) for less.  

Realistically, Joe knew that something had to change and that a solution needed to be found that met all the Council’s print requirements in a more productive, qualitative and cost-efficient way. Joe listed the potential print services that were required using his experience from the print room services he had provided and discussed the situation with his HoD who was fully supportive of Joe’s initiative.


With the assistance of the Council Procurement Team, Joe explored various options for the future provision of print and considered the various routes to market on the basis that potential spend was in excess of the published spend thresholds.

He knew of the OJEU route to market but the Procurement Team suggested that he reviewed the various print framework contracts that were available as they would provide a much less intense and speedier outcome from suppliers who had already gone through the onerous PQQ and ITT process and had been selected by the framework operators on cost, quality, capability, service and accreditations – ie, all the significant investigations had been done.

The Procurement Team undertook a mini-tender using one of the print frameworks and CDS were subsequently appointed as Print Manager within three months of the opportunity being advertised. 

How CDS provided Joe with an effective solution and how we can help you

CDS are appointed as Print Manager to all the major print framework contracts and have considerable pedigree working with the public sector both in central government and across the wider public sector.  

Joe worked closely with CDS to implement and mobilise the new arrangement and now has the responsibility for managing the contract. Things are completely different but much better now, especially for Joe. The stress has gone. The new service provided by CDS includes Reprographics (an off-site solution with a next day service from a dedicated supplier who can also turn around very urgent and emergency work on a same-day basis); print management of general print using only the most appropriate suppliers and digital transformation – an added benefit of the new relationship and something which Joe and his team would have struggled with.

A dedicated account manager works with Joe and his colleagues to fully understand the requirements both on a tactical and strategic basis; management information (MI) embracing the whole requirement is provided regularly and Joe can access MI anytime he wishes because he has been given ‘same view’ access to the CDS bespoke browser-based management system, Print Portal.

The CDS team provide Joe’s clients with all the help, advice and guidance they need to generate the right solution including the provision of multi-channel output and other digital solutions designed to achieve cost efficiencies through reduced print volumes and more focus on a Digital First strategy.   


Joe’s clients are delighted. Costs are down and in full control; budget targets are met and quality and timeous delivery are exceeded. The print management approach has worked well.

Take action

Central government and wider public sector clients

If you and your organisation are considering a potential print management solution for your organisation, the CCS Framework (defined below), could be a good vehicle for you. It avoids the onerous processes linked to the OJEU. 

The Crown Commercial Service (CCS) Framework RM3785 offers all Public Sector organisations the flexibility to source a fully-managed, end-to-end print and digital solution that includes associated services, such as design, storage, fulfilment and distribution, postal dispatch, scanning and stock management. The Framework offers a compliant, straightforward, quick, cost efficient and direct route to market.

For more information please click here.

CDS is an approved Lot 2 Framework supplier offering a bespoke, tailored and competed solution to your requirements.

(Other public sector framework call-off contracts are also available through CDS. Talk to us first to find the best procurement route.)

Private Sector Clients

Please get in touch to speak with one of our experts or to arrange a meeting to discuss your requirements in greater detail. We tailor solutions to meet all requirements.

More about CDS

David BurtonCDS is a communications agency. We apply intelligent thinking to transform communications and experiences across creative, digital, print and technology.

Our solutions continue to take the pain away from clients as we introduce simple and efficient processes designed to ease many of the burdens associated with comms, marketing materials and the storage of mass files and paper. We have the ambition, vision and capability to support you in your future print and digital communication requirements both inbound and outbound. 

If you have a similar requirement and need great results from a company that understands the public sector, please get in touch with me, David Burton on 0113 399 4180. I am the Principle Account Director – Public Sector for CDS Ltd.

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