I have 140 Cost Centers for my Departmental Printing....I don't feel as bad now.
Dale McIntyre the specific question we have is:
"How are schools handling requests for release stations? We have a big demand from departments, but it's cost prohibitive to roll them out given the number of MFDs we have. So far every department we've talked to has balked at the cost of paying for a release station, which leaves us having to fall back to Xerox accounting if they want to manage print release and accounting. Having two printer accounting / access control systems - Pharos and Xerox accounting - is not a desirable solution for us.
We are using Xerox as well.
What models are you using? The ConnectKey devices work really well under iMFP, just have to make sure you rock the right firmware revision.
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We did this at the school I manage. We have a 130 MFPs, about 25k users.
You are correct, the student side of the system is MUCH easier, just bill to their account and you are done with it. Create a "Challenge" driver package that authenticates the users based on their domain account/Card ID whatever is relevant. Have all students print to a few Follow you Queues, swipe and release at any public MFP (that is our model anyway)
-Cost Centers are designated per individual by their department. Some departments as easy, others have far a lot of cost centers.
-Some important higher up faculty members will not want to swipe constantly
-Job size can be significant for some departments
We created direct print queues for the high volume departments and fussy higher ups, so those users can print directly. Bundle in a Pharos PopUp client that allows them to select their cost center at the time of printing, job comes out right away. The client also allows you to have the user remember the last entry, so if a user only has one cost center they pick it once and they are good to go.
We have faculty swipe for scanning/copying as we can then auto populate their emails and such and users don't gripe nearly as much about that.
We actually created extra cards for these. These cards are essentially users in the Pharos database with cost centers attached to them. The cards are then shared by the student employees in the department. Most departments put an envelope on the wall/student cube and have the cards there for them to use. You can build print work flows for these as well by using the ID card#, the user then swipes the card at the MFP and the jobs associated with that ID# are there.
Hope this helps.
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David, I spoke with Zhiyong Tian about it shortly in Scottsdale, and have some thoughts. I'm not working much today, but will collate something and get back here next week after the holiday. Something that amazes me is y'all have so many MFDs, how big is your university (staff/faculty and student pops)? Any sense of how spread out your campus is?
Also may I offer you condolences about having to do this with that particular corporation. Proof that not everything that rolls out of Rochester is as effective as Pharos, nor as fine to work with.
Philip Daniel's setup is pretty similar to what we're doing, without the swiping (except for functional cards).
We're running 1400 cost centers on 91 MFDs with iMFPs/8 PS200s to 28K students and 4K staff. We have another 87 devices uncontrolled in the back offices, paid for on a metered basis.