Headquartered at Fort Eustis, Va., the U.S. Army’s Training and Doctrine Command (TRADOC) department develops, educates and trains soldiers, civilians and leaders; supports unit training; and designs, builds and integrates a versatile mix of capabilities, formations and equipment to strengthen the U.S. Army. TRADOC is the official command component responsible for training and developing the U.S. Army. As the Army ends its involvement in Iraq and scales back forces in Afghanistan, it approaches a strategic transition—broadening its focus from “winning current fights to preparing for life beyond them.” As such, TRADOC is laying the groundwork for the “Army of 2020.”
U.S. Army Training and Doctrine Command (TRADOC) headquarters standardizes on Lexmark printers and multifunction products to cut costs, improve security and enhance user experience
Printers & Multifunction Devices
Lexmark laser printers and multifunction products
Lexmark Print Management with Secure Print Release for Common Access Card (CAC)
TRADOC’s mission is to lead the Army’s transition into the future by shaping the Army of 2020, developing leaders and organizations, modernizing equipment and revolutionizing training to strengthen the nation’s adaptive land force for decisive action. To meet these goals, TRADOC realized that it needed to re-evaluate the way it uses its existing communications and technology equipment. TRADOC HQ—which had approximately 1,300 printers spread across 32 buildings for 2,300 users—needed to find ways to become more efficient, reduce costs, improve document security and compliance and enhance the user experience.
Documents, both paper and electronic, are an essential part of any government organization’s workflow, and TRADOC HQ is no exception. After receiving a BRAC order to move from Fort Monroe to Fort Eustis in 2010, TRADOC HQ was tasked with consolidating to a single output vendor. TRADOC’s BRAC team researched competing products, and chose to standardize on Lexmark’s state-of-the-art printing technology, solutions and services.
Lexmark’s first step was to document the current output environment and capture employee requirements by department so that the new solution would meet employee needs from day one. When it was time to move to Fort Eustis, employees were instructed to leave their printers behind. A team of Lexmark specialists installed new Lexmark laser printers and multifunction products (MFP) at Fort Eustis across six buildings for roughly 2,300 users.
The MFPs were equipped with the Lexmark Print Management with secure Print Release solution that enables employees to print to any device on the network. Instead of “pushing” documents to a designated print device where the pages sit out in public view until they are retrieved—users “pull” them down from the print queue when they log in or swipe their common access card (CAC) at the device. Instead of being tethered to print to a single device, users can release print jobs from the printer that is most convenient or choose one with the features or capabilities they need for a particular print job—such as if color output or finishing is needed. 2 15WWM4287 “We selected Lexmark because we believe it is the leading output management vendor in CAC-enabled printing. Other vendors had different versions of that functionality, but Lexmark was already proven in the market,” said Fred McKinnon, G6 system integration.
Today, the organization operates 274 Lexmark networked output devices, far fewer than its former count of 1,300 stand-alone devices. Of these networked Lexmark devices, just 60 are desktop printers. TRADOC’s costs are down substantially— ultimately attributable to the device consolidation to MFPs which has resulted in a smaller fleet that operates efficiently and reliably. Although users were reluctant at first about the switch to Lexmark devices, they soon saw the advantages o
“Most of our users previously had very old desktop printers that were very expensive to operate,” said McKinnon. “Now, with the new Lexmark devices, our employees have access to faster print speeds, better print quality, color output and new features that were not available on the old devices.” Improved security is another key benefit of the Lexmark solution. The MFPs secure users’ identification before they introduce data or documents onto the network, or carry out digital sending and retrieval functions. Now, TRADOC can ensure that each MFP holds submitted print jobs until users insert their CAC into the printer for authentication. Only when authentication occurs does the MFP print the requested documents.
“With our previous solution, documents were left on printers,” said McKinnon. “With our new solution, that doesn’t happen.” In addition, the Lexmark Print Management with secure Print Release solution enables TRADOC to reduce excess printing. Jobs not released to be printed are automatically deleted after a specified period of time. Those abandoned print jobs result in fewer pages printed overall and therefore even further reduced costs. The secure print release solution also ensures that the individual who prints the job, is also the only person to retrieve it, thereby alleviating concerns about printing confidential documents on network printers. Scanning and faxing from the Lexmark MFPs also requires authentication.
Fred McKinnon G6 System Integration U.S. Army Training and Doctrine Command headquarters“Now, with the new Lexmark devices, our employees have access to faster print speeds, better print quality, color output and new features that were not available on the old devices.
Perhaps as important as cost savings and ease of use is the relationship Lexmark forged with the organization. “Our recommendation for anyone considering a technology infrastructure overhaul—regardless of your selected vendor—is to incorporate a change management component. Lexmark did a great job assisting us with that,” said McKinnon. Lexmark specialists continue to stay actively involved long after the initial sale, providing fast response to questions. Lexmark’s strategic approach to understanding TRADOC’s unique requirements has led to a very positive, long-term relationship with the organization.
With its device consolidation project complete, the organization is now looking for other ways to leverage its Lexmark printing, imaging and document-routing capabilities. For example, in the near future, TRADOC hopes to deploy Scan to SharePoint to its MFPs. The solution captures any type of document in real time from any location, including remote offices, to make the information immediately available to Microsoft SharePoint users. Standing at the forefront of innovation to shape the Army of 2020 is more than just a job for TRADOC—it is a mission. Ultimately, Lexmark presented the right solution at the right time to help the organization support that mission through improved security, reduced costs, improved workflow and enhanced user experience.