East + North Hertfordshire NHS Trust – Managed Print Services Procurement

East and North Hertfordshire NHS Trust are a large multi-site acute Trust. The challenge was to fully scope the printing requirements across all Trust sites and identify any potential benefits/financial savings from the procurement of a single managed print service. Current print costs were £1.3million The Trust had a wide range of hardware, over 1,600 devices, from ageing desk-jet printers on desktops to modern multi-function copiers/printers, all of which were supported by a variety of 3rd party contracts. Rationalisation to a single supplier for the day-to-day management of its printer portfolio was identified as a key objective of the project. The printing processes varied greatly within each of the departments, and part of the challenge was to address this issue, reducing time and resources wasted on inefficient processes. The devices generated over 20.5 million printed pages, including 1.2 million patient letters per year and accuracy and assurance of the production of the printed media was an essential part of the specification.


Apira provided consultancy services covering four main workstreams:

  • Initiation: Preparation of a specification document detailing the Trust’s future printing requirements, identify stakeholders, agree and implement a communication plan to assist with the change management process
  • Pre-Qualification Stage: manage the PQQ process, agree the evaluation criteria that will be used to decide between the responses received, review responses and ensure selection of supplier shortlist
  • Tender Stage: formally send the Requirement Specification to shortlisted suppliers, agree the evaluation criteria that will be used to decide between the responses received, review responses, facilitate supplier presentation session and ensure selection of preferred supplier(s)
  • Tender Completion: Complete the tender process through to selecting a preferred provider and negotiating contracts; transition project management to selected supplier


A preferred supplier was selected, offering the lowest costs across all categories, presenting a clear demonstration of savings, understanding of requirements, project management approach, NHS experience and positive references: Financial savings identified as part of the project were estimated to be in the region of £350k compared to the current hardware/consumable costs. In addition to this, savings to of approximately £60k per annum are expected from:

  • Power consumption – from current £20,985 per annum to an estimated £3,700 pa in the audit due to fewer, more energy efficient printers (£17,000 saving)
  • Paper reduction – £20,000 per annum saving was estimated in the audit based on enforced duplex printing
  • Current annual external printing costs – audit estimated 10% saving (£23,000pa) by using the supplier’s buying power.

Improvements in the print policies and procedures will also benefit the Trust in releasing time for key administrative staff and increased efficiency in the distribution of patient appointment letters and other general printed information.

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