Balancing budgets and educational needs has long been a huge dilemma for many school systems. But in the past few years, the issue has reached a critical mass. Every dollar saved can make a difference, especially when the difference is as much as 40 percent on an order, as was the case when one Maryland school district turned to Mount Direct to supply its projector mounts.
Located in northeast Maryland, Cecil County Public School System is a moderate-size suburban district, serving nearly 16,000 students. Several years ago the district decided to implement SMART Board technology in its schools. The technology uses a series of interactive whiteboards that can recognize input by a user’s touch in much the same way a keyboard stroke of a computer or a mouse click does. Highly adaptable to classroom instruction, the technology takes the input and displays it via a projector, which is typically mounted on the ceiling or wall.
An integral component of the setup is the projector mount. There are dozens of products from which to choose. But “Mount Direct’s projector mounts were an excellent fit for our application,” said Kelly Wood, purchasing agent for the Cecil County Public School System.
A key element in the purchase decision was Mount Direct’s price point, which stands head and shoulders above a crowded field. “Its price point is highly competitive,” said Wood, who is required to do a cost comparison each year as part of the school district’s ordering process. Over the past three years of working with Mount Direct, Wood said “no other company has even come close to Mount Direct’s pricing.” Wood’s price comparisons have shown that the supplier’s prices are consistently 30 percent to 40 percent less than those of other companies’ products.
For the Cecil County Public School District, the SMART Board technology setup seems to work best when the projector is suspended from the ceiling. But a number of the district’s schools are older buildings. Ceiling heights can vary from eight feet to 11 feet. So while the same or similar projector mounts can be used in many cases, suspension adaptors, which allow the projector to be properly positioned under the common false ceiling tiles in classrooms, may also be needed. Pricing on Mount Direct’s adaptors are likewise highly competitive.
The cost efficiencies that Mount Direct brings to the table might seem like a sufficient reason for the district’s exclusive relationship with the supplier, but the company also has an outstanding service ethic, said Wood. Shipments arrive quickly. Orders are complete. Bills are straightforward and accurate. Parts are rarely missing or broken. And on the off chance a return is required, there’s not been a problem. “And if there were, I know I would hear about it,” said Wood. “I can always rely on them.”
This year alone, the district ordered some 160 projector mounts based on the number of SMART Boards that were installed in the schools. The district’s shift away from individual orders has also allowed it to take advantage of Mount Direct’s competitive bulk order discounts. “My rep is always willing to work with me on an order and find the best pricing,” said Wood. “I love dealing with Mount Direct. If only all my suppliers delivered on value like Mount Direct.”
For more information contact www.MountDirect.com