Innovations Abound In Washington
Numerous recent upgrades and service enhancements show why the Washington Department of Printing is one of the top 10 in-plants in the country.
by Bob Neubauer
When you sit down at the table in George Morton's office at the Washington State Department of Printing, you get the feeling there's nobody else he'd rather be talking to. His welcoming smile and direct eye contact make it clear that he really cares about the people he's with.
Perhaps that's why Morton, director of the Department of Printing for the past four years, is so popular among his 160 employees—he's concerned about them. In fact, he visits as many of them as he can each day to find out what's on their minds. When it comes to customers, his concerns are just as genuine.
"The most critical thing is to listen to your customers," he explains. "What does the customer want? What can we do to make them successful?"
The answers to those questions have been pretty clear in the department's actions over the past few months. New equipment and new services have made it easier for customers to do business with the Olympia, Wash.-based in-plant.
Take its Internet storefront, for example. Spearheaded by Larry Weber, assistant director of information and document services, the storefront has allowed customers to order anything from business cards to publications for years now. Even so, the department felt it could streamline this service.
So recently, the online business card function was revamped so that jobs are sent directly from customers' computers to a Xerox 2060, instead of having to be typeset first for output on a Ryobi press. This is speeding up turnaround time, and keeping customers happy.
New Gear Increases Productivity
On the production floor, several new pieces of equipment have helped the department increase productivity. After the operation installed a new six-color Komori press last year, 2002 saw a new Duplo System 4000 collator arrive in the bindery, joined more recently by a new MBO folder.