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St. Columba’s School saves money with YSoft SafeQ for printing

The YSoft SafeQ solution enabled St. Columba’s School to replace all of the school’s (at times) costly and inefficient desktop printers with Konica Minolta

The YSoft SafeQ solution enabled St. Columba’s School to replace all of the school’s (at times) costly and inefficient desktop printers with Konica Minolta networked multifunctional printers (MFPs). It is now easier and more convenient for staff and students to print copy and scan, whilst significantly reducing the school’s overall printing costs.

St. Columba’s Catholic Boys’ School was founded in 1973 in Bexleyheath in the UK as a comprehensive school for boys aged 11 to 16. Since then the school has grown, first with the merging of the upper and lower schools in 1990, then in 2005 with the addition of a new classroom block, a new sports hall, and the renovation of the school’s theatre. The school’s faculty challenges each student to achieve his best, every step of the way. By setting the highest expectations for learning and behaviour, the school provides an environment in which students excel, as reflected by their outstanding results.


To help the staff and students focus on their work and studies, the school wanted to eliminate sources of inconvenience and wasted time in the school’s print environment – whilst reducing printing costs. The school needed the ability to prevent wasteful habits, such as students sending a document to print multiple times because the document was not printed the moment it was sent to print.

Another important concern was the need to protect the security and confidentiality of documents. When staff members sent confidential documents to print, they would have to ‘dash’ to the printer to collect their prints before anyone else picked them up.

To channel the school’s financial resources toward areas that further educational excellence, the school wanted to reduce operating expenses and the print environment was a key target. The school was using approximately 50 desktop printers of a variety of makes and models. These printers were expensive to supply, maintain and administer. The cost of procuring and replacing the various types of ink cartridges, repairing malfunctioning printers and keeping print drivers up-to-date was vast, in terms of both consumables and labour.

With this scattered, decentralised print environment, it was not possible for the school to track printing and copying operations or to control costs.


To meet all of their needs, the school chose Konica Minolta multifunctional printers together with YSoft SafeQ Professional Edition, with licensing per server. The solution also included YSoft SafeQ Konica Minolta Terminal Embedded software installed on 18 x Konica Minolta MFPs. This solution enables the school to track and account for every print, copy, and scan and to administer the entire print system from a single Webbased interface.
The terminal software is embedded in each of the Konica Minolta MFPs, enabling staff and students to authenticate themselves and manage their print jobs – all at the MFP’s user interface. Users authenticate by entering their username and password and so no additional hardware (such as a card reader) is required. YSoft SafeQ is fully integrated with the school’s Active Directory, simplifying user database management.

The YSoft SafeQ Billing Code feature enables the school to accurately track and account prints, copies and scans by department, project or subject matter, and multilevel billing codes enable detailed granularity, for example, in situations where a member of the faculty teaches multiple subjects.

The school also chose the optional YSoft SafeQ Scan Management feature. This feature streamlines the scanning process and makes it easy for staff and students to scan directly to their e-mail inbox or a specified folder, reducing time spent on slow, expensive faxes and eliminating the need to store hard copies of documents. Now that scanning is easy and secure, the school’s policy is for scanning to always be the preferred method of transmitting and storing documents.


With YSoft SafeQ, St. Columba’s School now has a complete overview of all printing, copying and scanning across the entire campus. YSoft SafeQ’s comprehensive reports enable the school to charge back all prints and copies to individual departments and the school has met one of its major goals; achieving significant, on-going cost savings as a result of implementing the YSoft SafeQ solution and replacing standalone desktop printers with cost-effective Konica Minolta MFPs.
Since YSoft SafeQ ensures that no document is printed until the user authenticates at the printer, staff no longer have to worry about the security of their confidential documents. The requirement to authenticate before printing has also resulted in less waste from uncollected prints. Waste is further reduced by the ability of users to cancel print jobs directly at the printer via the YSoft SafeQ Konica Minolta Embedded Terminal.

The school also intends to add the optional YSoft SafeQ Credit module to their YSoft SafeQ solution, which will enable the school to issue each student a fixed amount of credit per for print and month to use copy services. Students will learn to improve their printing habits and reduce the waste of paper and toner. For example, they can choose less expensive options such as B/W instead of colour, or duplex instead of simplex.