Many Challenges, One Goal
It is perhaps the most valued possession of any organization: a large, vocal customer base. For decades, a healthy mix of large corporations, global multinationals, and medium-sized enterprises has trusted us with their mainframe environments, digital archives, and document output. The stories of how they use documents — and the challenges they face — are always interesting and sometimes even inspiring. So some of my colleagues thought it would be nice to dedicate an article to some of the ways we have worked with long-time customers.
Global financial institution
Like businesses everywhere, the typical LRS customer is under pressure to reduce operating costs. Printing is an often-overlooked aspect of IT, but it is an ideal place to start looking for bottom-line savings. Employees at one large European bank were printing 224 million pages annually; of those, about one-fifth were printed in color. Using LRS reporting tools, they were able to investigate user print behavior and develop a print policy that reduced overall print volume by 20%. Further savings were achieved by enforcing print rules that reduced color output by half and increased duplex output by 60%. The customer reported a 40% overall reduction in the cost of printing.
Large pharmaceutical company
Of our manufacturing clients, probably the majority of them come to us with SAP-related queries. Some may be in the process of moving to new SAP applications whereas others simply want to optimize or secure printing output already generated by SAP. In the case of one worldwide pharmaceutical provider, the company had practically no overall printing strategy. Instead, they had multiple point solutions in place and no centralized way to manage all their documents. LRS Enterprise Output Management gave them a single point of control to manage printing from SAP and other backend business applications. In addition, we helped the customer move their desktop printing traffic to the same LRS instance in order to standardize on one solution for company-wide printing. This helped them minimize the need for redundant software, hardware, and staff time.
Oil and gas multinational
Another SAP customer had a problem related to truly business-critical printing. This global enterprise was heavily reliant on printed transportation documents. Whenever documents would fail to print, it would result in fuel shipment delays as tanker trucks could not leave the depot without them. There were long queues of trucks idling as they waited for the proper documentation. Eventually, these delays impacted the company’s customers enough that they sought other suppliers who could provide timelier shipments. LRS Output Management for SAP made the printing process more transparent and more reliable, and administrators received a notification message after a document was successfully printed. In the case of errors, administrators could quickly rectify the issue before it could result in delays.
Large U.S. healthcare provider
Like all healthcare organizations, this East coast medical center needed to ensure the security of all processes related to patient care. One critical issue to address was tamper-proof prescription printing.
In order to comply with federal regulations and be eligible for reimbursement, all printed prescriptions must employ certain security features. Printing on tamper-proof prescription paper is a straightforward but expensive way to comply with this mandate. For this customer, however, cost was not the primary concern. A bigger issue was the inability to account for each sheet of this special paper, which is necessary to prevent prescription fraud.
The customer’s existing environment could not ensure this accountability, so they turned to LRS for help. By combining void pantograph technology and other capabilities of the LRS software, they were able to eliminate the need for printing on special tamper-proof paper. The LRS solution reduced manual administrative processes needed to account for each sheet of the special paper stock. Instead, the new system electronically stored all of the information once a prescription was printed for auditing and compliance purposes.
These are just a few of the stories and queries we’ve encountered in serving our broad customer base. We have heard nearly as many unique printing challenges as we have unique customers, but they all have one thing in common. They all expect printing to be reliable, secure, and efficient. Each customer’s day-to-day operations need to proceed without document problems. LRS solutions simply function in the background, monitoring and managing all output so that companies can focus on what matters to them most: serving their own customers.