HANDELSBANKEN: Futureproofing to a new centralised printing platform



Maximising operational efficiency by seamlessly transforming printing and scanning into a reliable, secure and sustainable managed service


The installation of a new Canon fleet and streamlining existing devices to boost productivity, and provide visibility and control for senior executives


This is the first time Handelsbanken is moving towards a consistent and centralised print platform. Printing had always been a local country decision – but this proved problematic as the company grew. Now they have a fully secure, futureproof and consistent print service across six International markets, including Nordic countries, the United Kingdom, the Netherlands, Latvia, Estonia and Lithuania.


Centralisation for large-scale optimization

Founded in 1871, Handelsbanken is a historic Swedish bank which has grown to around 800 branches, spanning six International markets in 25 different countries: the Nordics, United Kingdom, the Netherlands, Latvia, Estonia and Lithuania, and employing 11,500 members of staff. A large-scale, contemporary organisation providing a broad portfolio of services, Handelsbanken relies on efficient administration to support its excellent service delivery.

As the company continued to grow its services and client base, it became apparent that Handelsbanken was being held back by its fragmented and decentralised legacy print ecosystem. To provide a world-class service to clients in every local market, Handelsbanken’s internal processes had to operate smoothly. Employees needed time to focus on their existing customers and be ready for new customers at any given moment. This meant that workers needed rapid access to the system, and to be able to print documents on demand and on the move.

Legacy impacting efficiency

The legacy print solution was vast, comprising over 4,000 different devices, spanning 10-20 different vendors. With printer devices left up to local IT teams, the multi-machine, multi-vendor fleet was both expensive and cumbersome. As well as the costs, Handelsbanken wanted to release its IT department from how much admin they were forced to do. Each time a new device was installed, Handelsbanken would have to send a technician out, often from Sweden, to deploy it and ensure it could work on its varied print platform. The IT team also had to manage a huge number of print drivers and print queues; while struggling to reduce downtime caused by older models breaking down.

The platform’s disjointed experience was also an issue for Handelsbanken employees. With each branch acquiring its own printers and print platform, a visiting employee would find they were unable to print, hampering productivity and effective client delivery.

 Legacy impacting efficiency

It’s important to understand that printing is critical to our business, comments Peter Ludwig, owner of the Global print solution at Handelsbanken.

Taking back control

After an initial conversation, Handelsbanken awarded Canon the contract. Canon analysed the results of some print case studies Handelsbanken had completed. It then initiated its own print audit and from these combined efforts developed a transformative print strategy.

“It was obvious that Canon was eager to understand our business model, understand our unique needs and really get to the heart of the matter at hand,” continued Peter Ludwig. “And, the fact that Canon was able to supply an end-to-end print solution, incorporating print, copy, scan and fax on a single server was a huge selling point.”

Canon’s first steps were to point out the excess number of devices and streamline and rationalise the fleet. In total, the enormous fleet of 4,500 devices was halved and reduced to just 2,200 multifunctional machines and laser printers standardised across the continents. Alongside this, Canon established five standard print packages for Handelsbanken’s various branch sizes, and HQ’s. The new devices were easily installed and almost immediately started making life easier for the IT teams thanks to their efficient running and ability for central control.

Our team cannot be without print for more than a couple of hours. If you have a problem in branch and can’t print out a critical contract for a potential client there and then, they will take their business elsewhere. This is why we had to change. We simply needed a solution that we could centralise, have control over, and that would just work.

Continued benefits

Canon’s uniFLOW solution gave Handelsbanken visibility and control over its print fleet, enabling the team to leverage a detailed reporting system for all printing, copying and scanning to control expenditure. Canon was able to improve Handelsbanken’s document security across the regions, with printing now requiring authorised identification via a SmartCard. According to Peter Ludwig, employees have praised the reliability and efficiency of the Canon technology, which allows them to feel at ease and gives them the freedom to print documents anywhere, to any device, no matter which bank branch they’re in.

The added visibility also led to sustainability benefits. Previously, the bank had no idea how much wastage was occurring or where it needed to direct attention to stop it. Thanks to the new centralised system, Handelsbanken was able to target inefficiencies and switch to double sided printing as a standard across all regions.

“Handelsbanken had always operated with A3 as a standard, for many years. But thanks to Canon, we found that only 4% of all printing was being done on A3. So, we made huge savings by switching to A4 standard models and ensuring that double sided and black and white was the default setting for all print jobs.”

Administrative and operational costs were slashed by 15-20%, thanks to easy installation and seamless integration. New devices no longer require technician time for installation – “Thanks to Canon’s all-in-one software, and preinstalled the devices work out of the box, and we no longer have need for technicians on hand every time a new device is set up.”

Continued benefits

Looking ahead

Working with Canon has enabled Handelsbanken to achieve a new level of efficiency in its print function. So much so that is has inspired the Swedish-based bank to explore how Canon can support it with digital workflows. Canon is helping Handelsbanken to digitally convert its some paper files so the bank can stay compliant, find data easily and keep it secure. Canon also manages Handelsbanken’s essential bank statement printing operation, which is now underpinned by reliable and efficient Canon Océ printers.

“We have worked with Canon for eight to nine years now and our agreement goes on until 2020,” says Peter Ludwig. “We’re happy with the arrangement and continue to find ways to work together to improve our growth and efficiency.”

The new Canon print platform has provided structure, clarity and control for Handelsbanken’s print operation – inspiring the bank for the future.

Find out how Canon can support you in your business goals