University of Gloucestershire – Consultancy for Print Services Review Project


The University of Gloucestershire (UoG) has a heritage stretching back 180 years and has grown into a diverse, vibrant community of 9,000 undergraduate students, 1,000 postgraduate students, 40,000 alumni, and 1,000 staff from across the world. With campuses in Cheltenham and Gloucester, they offer students a safe, dynamic and exciting place to learn, grow, make connections and shape the world.

The Challenge

The University had an external print spend of approximately £150k per annum for short, medium and long run print fulfilments. This was managed under an existing framework agreement that allowed departments to call off print runs directly from suppliers. The contract was in urgent need of renewal, suppliers on the framework had reduced in number and it was felt that savings could be made by more rigorous internal discipline and an easier to manage contract. However, UoG lacked the internal skills and time to analyse the problem in detail and write a specification.

be used as the basis for an Invitation to Tender for the procurement of a new system

Change Pressures

Since the original contract had been signed the landscape had changed; changes in the number of suppliers on the framework, changes in what departments used print services and increasing pressures to be environmentally friendly. It was also felt the structure of the current contract made it impossible to manage given the autonomy of the various University departments.

How Counterpoint helped

Counterpoint worked together with UoG to understand the University’s needs in terms of print requirements and contract management requirements.

We carried out:

  • Stakeholder analysis including interviews with a cross section of University staff and external suppliers
  • Spend analysis
  • Contract management analysis of existing contracts

The focus of this work was to establish a baseline consisting of:

  • Sizing, in terms of number and type of print runs
  • Status of contract and payments with current suppliers
  • User needs both now and in the future
  • Environmental compliance with university standards
  • Security considerations for examination papers
  • Contract management issues

What were the results?

Within 6 weeks Counterpoint had provided the University with:

  • A written specification
  • A very clear picture of what the issues facing the University
  • An agreement on what type of contract was best suited to UoG’s devolved structure, based on our recommendations
  • A series of questions to be included in the ITT for bidders to answer such that UoG could evaluate responses in a structured fashion
  • The confidence that UoG could manage any future contract



“Counterpoint quickly understood our challenges, and not only developed and proposed a specification a specification, but helped us see a way forward to gain better control over the print spend which will ultimately give us savings. They were easy to work with and definitely went the extra mile for us.”

Chantal Goldsworthy

Communications, Marketing and Student Recruitment Office Manager, University of Gloucestershire