In-Plant/Data Center Integration
Is your in-plant's future dark? Then illuminate the path ahead. Merge with your data center and let the glow that surrounds them surround you.
THERE IS an old saying: When all signs point to Rome it's time to buy lira and go.
Right now, all signs point to merging the in-plant and the data center.
• The skills required to run data center printing equipment and in-plant printing equipment are increasingly similar. After all, running a DocuTech isn't that different than running a high-speed laser printer.
• The technology involved in running both shops is aligning and networkable.
After all, the data center has traditionally been in the on-demand world and the print industry is rocketing in that direction.
• Corporations are employing company-wide print strategies, saving money by sharing equipment and increasing efficiency. The DocuTech that sits idle for even a moment is wasted. Why not have it work an extra shift printing statistical reports from the data center?
Bob Tierney knows. Tierney, director of print communications operations at Allstate Insurance, merged his Wheeling, Ill., in-plant with Allstate's data center in May, 1995.
"There's no question that this is the way the wind is blowing," Tierney asserts. "And the wind is a gale right now."
One concern in-plant managers have with merging is that they might lose control of their shop. It's natural for a manager to fear ceding control. After all, the biggest threat to in-plants is the facilities management vulture, circling overhead with an eye toward assuming control of and devouring your shop.
It can, however, be a huge benefit to join your Information Technology (IT) department. Partnering with IT may or may not cost you some authority, but it will definitely increase your shop's stability, stature, access to technology and technological expertise—and it will be the best thing for your company.