PROJECT: Printing as a service, University of Gothenburg

The GU-Print project was tasked with establishing a unified printing service for the university‚Äôs 50,000 staff and students. Dealing with a fragmented environment featuring various solutions, services, and providers across approximately 40 units, 7 faculties, and numerous campuses and satellite offices, the goal was to consolidate these into a single comprehensive solution. This new system a printing-as-a-service model integrated with the university’s multifunctional card system for both students and staff.

I came into the project as an expert advisor during the tendering process based on my previous experience with printing and general IT and as representative for the Artistic Faculty. After a few months I was promoted to project manager and responsible for steering the project more towards stakeholder engagement and bridging the gap between IT and the core operations (education and research), more focused on change management.

As this was my first time managing a project it was a daunting task but with the support and advice from the experienced project managers assisting me, a great team, invested project owner and the people at the project management office it became a super rewarding experience. For me learning on the job is one of the best ways to develop and motivate myself. During the project I was in charge of project planning and budget, stakeholder engagement, reporting to the steering committee and PMO, coordination of communication, development and implementation of support organization and processes among other things.


The printing service was a huge success and managed to cut the unnecessary printing even more than estimated while also delivering better service, ease of access and higher data security. The administration and cost of contracts, tendering and handling of consumables was completely removed from the units and faculties cutting down both administrative and direct costs dramatically.

Lessons learned
  • Listening and acknowledging users fears before addressing is key to winning trust. If they don’t believe you heard them they will probably not trust your assurances and/or solutions.
  • Don’t underestimate the attachment people develop with tools they use on a daily basis.
  • The members of a well balanced and involved reference group are both great advisors and ambassadors.
  • Be aware of scoop creep and make sure you document decisions and agree on them before leaving a meeting.