Update from the COVID-19 Front: Palm Beach County Perseveres
I may be “isolated” in my home office, but I’ve been hearing from managers all over the world about how their in-plants are faring during the pandemic. This week I heard from John D.L. Johnson, manager of the Palm Beach County Graphics Division, in Greenacres, Fla., where it’s been hot, dry and sunny lately, even hitting 96 degrees this week.
“Here in Palm Beach County, most of our work in the Graphics Division has slowed down,” Johnson told me, in an email. “It has shown us just how much of our work was event related. Meetings, conferences, hearings, community events, all have been canceled since mid-March.
“On March 18 we had just completed printing the library’s monthly magazine – 12,000 copies of a 36-page four-color magazine – when all of their events scheduled for April we canceled. We were just about to start it on the saddle binder. Instead it all went out into the recycle dumpster.
“We have had some emergency orders for signage for COVID-19 testing centers, and hand washing and social distancing. This week we printed 12,000 copies of the 10-page state unemployment compensation applications that are being distributed due to the state’s website being overloaded with online applications. Sometimes technology doesn’t work, but paper will.
“I have been working from home for the last two weeks along with some of my office staff. I’m over 65 now, so they sent me home with a laptop to keep the shop running from a distance. One of my pressmen was approved and sent home for cautionary medical leave due to his underlying medical conditions. Our IT department is working out technical challenges to set up remote connections for our two design staff, who are the only Apple Macintosh users among 5,000 county employees.”
I wish John and his staff the best, and welcome any of you to update me about how your in-plant is doing during the COVID-19 crisis. Not all news will be good news, I know that, but your fellow managers will appreciate hearing that they are not alone in their struggles. Email me at BobNeubauer@napco.com.
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Bob has served as editor of In-plant Impressions since October of 1994. Prior to that he served for three years as managing editor of Printing Impressions, a commercial printing publication. Mr. Neubauer is very active in the U.S. in-plant industry. He attends all the major in-plant conferences and has visited nearly 170 in-plant operations around the world. He has given presentations to numerous in-plant groups in the U.S., Canada and Australia, including the Association of College and University Printers and the In-plant Printing and Mailing Association. He also coordinates the annual In-Print contest, co-sponsored by IPMA and In-plant Impressions.