Age UK Manchester has been working with B2 since 2009. This essential charity is committed to ensuring that older people live longer and happier lives, that any family carers are able to pursue their own health and wellbeing, and that everyone who receives their support is treated with dignity, respect and kindness. Its focus in Manchester is within some of the most socially deprived communities in England.
The range of services includes information and advice, counselling services, a wide spectrum of Ageing Well activities, home, day and residential care. This means that Age UK Manchester can offer older people a “relationship for life”, with support, opportunities and practical assistance at every stage.
Sitting behind these critical services is a reliable and value for money copy and print capability that B2 provides.
Having copy and print services that can be relied upon whilst freeing up budget for essential services are two good reasons why Age UK Manchester has continued their working relationship with B2 for over 10 years, fostering loyalty and trust on both sides.
As Nicola Mulhollund explains, “As a charity, we’re always looking to make savings. Our account manager Nick makes contact quite regularly and if we wanted to upgrade the type of machine we have, he will look around and get the best deals. He puts the financing in place and has lowered the prices quite considerably whilst upgrading the machines slightly from the current devices.”
But favourable pricing can not be at the expense of good service in Nicola’s eyes, whose advice is; “Look at the service side of things as well as the price of copies, how often they’ll be serviced and how long that takes, and the lead time for coming out in the event of a service call.”
“Service is important. I need to be able to ring and speak to someone and know when they’re going to be able to come out. If you’ve got a machine that’s gone down for any reason, you need to know that they will be back up and running and that your supplier can get the parts for it.”
“The impact for me personally is significant – I couldn’t issue personnel contracts and other essential documents if my device was down.”
Nicola is pleased with how things are with B2. “There’s always someone there at the end of the phone. They do come when arranged and they do fix the machines, and at the same time if a service is due they will carry that out too.”
Managing the devices proactively is an important feature with B2. “We’ll get a call when the device is ready for a service, and they’ll ask when is convenient for us.”
Taking the hassle out of managing toners is also a bonus with no requirement to hold stock or request replacement toners. “There is no need to give meter readings over the phone every month, or to order the next toner as it is done automatically and sent out.”
Printing requirements are diverse at Age UK Manchester, from the weighty reports for the monthly trustee meetings in head office, to day centres printing booklets, patterns for the craft centre, and posters for shops. So print reliability and quality is very relevant for back office as well as service delivery.
Managing personal data safely is critical to the provision of services, and management of employees and the charity’s 121 volunteers. Nicola uses the private print function which stores the print job until she is at the device and releases the print, preventing a data breach and reducing paper waste through an unsecure or unnecessary printing.
The device’s energy saving features also contribute. “The copier switches off to save on energy bills,” explains Nicola. “We don’t want it switched on all the time.”
Nicola also appreciates B2’s way of working. “The people culture does come across. If we need Nick, he’s always at the end of the phone or email. When he’s in touch I can always have a little catch up with him,” explains Nicola who has close family in North Wales where Nick lives.
“We like the engineers. We’ve gotten to know most of them over the years. They explain everything and clarify exactly what’s going on. If we raise any other queries with them, they’ll take a look.”
An honest, productive working relationship is at the heart of B2’s provision to Age UK Manchester.
“It’s reassuring,” confirms Nicola. “The service overall is very good, the copiers are very good and we do change them out every couple of years, so I’ve kept that relationship going.”
Formed in 1976, Age UK Manchester remains a local and independent charity whilst now sharing the name of the network of other Age UK’s.
Age UK Manchester aims not only to provide direct assistance through services of their own, but also seeks to influence the nature, style, client group and location of services provided by others, particularly the statutary agencies with responsibilities for meeting the needs of older people within the City of Manchester.
Age UK Manchester also work with Age UK colleagues across Greater Manchester to ensure a unified response to need in the region.
Find out more about their great work and contributions at www.ageukmanchester.org.uk