In-plant Graphics July 2009
WHEN BRIGGS & Stratton Graphic Services accepted a complex catalog job from a local non-profit, Pressroom Supervisor Brian Patterson had an inkling it might turn out to be a prize winner. When he saw the quality of the finished product, he felt even more confident.
MANY LARGE companies and organizations have accumulated a haphazard collection of copiers, fax machines and desktop printers over the years. Often these items were purchased by individual departments, from a variety of vendors. That's pretty much the way it's always been at Messiah College too. "Each department makes [its] own choices as far as desktop printers go," affirms Dwayne Magee, director of the Messiah College Press, in Grantham, Pa. "They even put their own ink cartridges in, and everyone has their own sources. There are no savings by purchasing in bulk."
SOMETIMES, YOUR career path has a way of sneaking up on you when you least expect it. Take, for instance, David Estes, Printing Services coordinator at East Kentucky Power Cooperative (EKPC), in Winchester, Ky. Estes admits he didn't know what the future held when he enrolled as an undeclared student at Eastern Kentucky University.
I WAS kind of shocked last month when I realized I have attended 15 consecutive In-Plant Printing and Mailing Association conferences. It seems like only yesterday that I was the new kid, lost in a sea of managers at the Stouffer Nashville Hotel; now I'm one of the only ones left who remember those crowded IPMA conferences of yore.
IN FEBRUARY, InfoTrends, a market research and consulting firm, partnered with North American Publishing Co., In-Plant Graphics' parent company, to conduct a survey entitled Purchasing Decisions and the Current Economic Climate. Readers of both Printing Impressions and IPG were asked to answer 18 questions pertaining to actions their organizations have made to weather these tough economic times.
The 50th In-Plant Printing and Mailing Association conference was a huge success, drawing more than 100 in-plant managers to Rochester, N.Y. One recurring theme in the sessions was that, in tough economic times, in-plants must be proactive about finding and creating business opportunities. Speakers gave them numerous ideas. Highlights of the conference included visits to the nearby facilities of both Xerox and Kodak to see and sample the latest graphic arts technologies.
, for four days of conversation, education and more. A two-day vendor fair, coupled with visits to the nearby facilities of both Xerox and Kodak, let managers see and sample the latest graphic arts technologies.
THE AMERICAN Academy of Family Physicians (AAFP) has served as an advocate, educational resource and standards bearer for U.S. doctors for more than half a century. Currently, the AAFP boasts a membership of 94,600 family physicians. Of course, the national association can't make house calls to each of its members. It has, however, made the right call by operating in-house Digital Printing and Mailing Services departments at its Leawood, Kan., head–quarters.
Visitors trying to find their way around New York’s vast Metropolitan Museum of Art (MET) usually end up consulting one of the floor plans available at the admission desks. Unfortunately for the MET’s in-plant, tucked away behind the gift shop, that job had long been out of reach. “We just could not do the job economically on our two-color Komori,” says Richard Peterson, manager of Office Services for the 139-year-old museum. That all changed recently when the 11-employee Printing Services department added a new four-color Ryobi 784 EP perfecting press. Now able to print two-over-two on a larger sheet size, the in-plant has brought those floor plans in-house and is slowly adding other work that previously had to be outsourced.
If there was one recurring theme in the sessions at the recent In-Plant Printing and Mailing Association (IPMA) conference, it was this: In these tough economic times, in-plants need to be more proactive than ever about finding and creating new business opportunities. Last month, more than 100 in-plant managers traveled to Rochester, N.Y., to learn just that. Though attendance was down from last year, it was impressive nonetheless in this economic climate (especially after the cancellation of the ACUP conference in April due to travel bans at universities).
Dale Zipkin knew his shop needed a better color printer. The 10-employee in-plant for the New York State United Teachers (NYSUT) union was using older color devices from Canon and Konica Minolta, but maintenance problems were hindering productivity. Splitting jobs between the two printers wasn't working out either.
ACROSS THE street from my office, I noticed one of our neighbors preparing his race car for the local speedway track. Admiring his sleek speedster, and always interested in going fast, I asked, "How much does a car like that cost? His smile nearly grew to the width of this face before he replied: "How fast do you want to go?"
The University Print Managers’ Group, a UK-based association of in-plant managers, gathered an international audience for its conference in June, including attendees from U.S. and New Zealand in-plant associations. The theme of the UPMG conference was “Dealing with the Money Squeeze” as the economic situation has had an impact on in-plants around the world.
The University of Oklahoma was a big winner at this year's In-Plant Printing and Mailing Association conference. Not only did the Norman-based in-plant win the most In-Print awards (11) for the quality of its printing, the shop earned two of the association's most prestigious honors: Mail Center of the Year and the In-House Promotional Excellence Award. OU's Central Mail Services was lauded for increasing its business, reorganizing its delivery routes and purchasing value-added equipment while reducing its budget.
Washington State University Publishing has earned the In-Plant Printing and Mailing Association's Management Award for using efficient management practices to further the objectives of the university. "Our staff was very pleased to receive this acknowledgement from our peers," says Steven F. Rigby, director of Printing at the Pullman-based in-plant. "It is always rewarding to know that our teamwork and sound management practices have not gone unnoticed."