In-Plant Graphics January 2009
ABOUT 100 document professionals participated in the recent Digital Printing in Government Forum. Organized by INTERQUEST, a market and technology research and consulting firm, the third annual forum took place in Washington, D.C., on November 5. During the “Leading Vendors Strategies Panel,” which kicked off the event, Elaine Wilde, vice president of sales for Kodak’s Graphic Communications Group, spoke about some leading-edge public sector in-plants that have been using Kodak’s technology:
IT’S HAPPENED far too many times. An in-plant proves it is more cost effective than outside printers, yet one or two executives are still convinced the organization can save money by outsourcing. This misfortune befell one university in-plant manager in the U.K. not long ago. Though he collected benchmarking data proving his in-plant’s cost effectiveness compared with commercial shops, his executive board simply could not believe his figures (though they had none of their own). They were intent on outsourcing. Why? They had heard that outsourcing printing was the trend in higher-ed, and that outsourcing saves money.
IT’S SAFE to say that no one left the 31st annual National Government Publishing Association (NGPA) conference thirsting for more information. Held in Bellevue, Wash., near Seattle, the meeting combined excellent educational sessions with a well-orchestrated plant tour that left many attendees breathless.
I HAVE the privilege of having one foot in the “real” world and one foot in the “academic” world. Since my primary job is to manage a variety of operations for Portland General Electric, I’m always looking for research that identifies what really works in the everyday work world.
Our recent survey of insurance company in-plants may not have drawn a record response (just 28) but those who did reply run some very large operations. A third of them have more than 50 full-time employees. The median number of employees is 14 and the average is 50.
MARGARET KLING began her career in the printing industry rather unexpectedly three decades ago. “I had a week-old baby at home,” recalls Kling, “and my sister-in-law wanted me to help out for two weeks, part time...[type]setting some name badges.” Glad to lend a hand, the self-described “stay-at-home mom” took the temp job at First Capital Printing, in St. Louis. There she made a discovery: she had a knack for typesetting.
THE ECONOMY may be bad, but that doesn’t mean the quality of your printed materials has to be. Instead of switching to cheaper paper, this is the time to give your publications more impact by using premium papers. “They help you set your printed communications apart,” notes Laura Shore, of Mohawk Fine Papers.
THE PRIMARY PRO of purchasing a pre-owned offset press is, indisputably, price. Savings can be tremendous, “half or more compared to the cost of a new press,” according to NAPL’s Ray Prince. Sometimes pre-owned is the only option, especially for an in-plant with limited financial resources.