In-plant Graphics March 2010 edition
THESE ARE challenging times for in-plants, as cost cutting, downsizing, department justifications and threats to outsource permeate daily business. Now is the time to strengthen your customer relationships and provide value-added services beyond conventional and digital printing.
FOR YEARS, Colorado's Office of Information Technology (IT) handled all of the state's mainframe printing, including checks, reports and statements. At the same time, 15 miles away, the state ran a separate full-service printing operation called Integrated Document Services (IDS), part of the Division of Central Services.
TO REDUCE the environmental impact of their operations, in-plants are reexamining the way they do things. As a result, soy-based inks, water-soluble solvents and recycled/FSC-certified paper are becoming commonplace. In-plants are switching to chemistry-free CTP, promoting duplexing and initiating recycling programs—all in the name of improving their image and doing the right thing for the environment.
LIKE MANY in-plants, Iowa Bankers Association's two-employee print shop had been getting by for years with old, inefficient folding equipment. Its friction-fed Baum folder had been around since Gerald Ford was in the White House. It was slow, inconsistent and could not handle heavy stock very well.
THE EMPHASIS on increased sustainability in the business world has motivated many in-plants to reduce waste and become more environmentally friendly. It both improves their image and aligns them with their parent organization's goals. Yet as the recession lingers, some find their attention diverted by economic considerations.
Joe Tucker likes telling the story of his first press check, back when he was handling print procurement for the state of Ohio. A state motorcycle map was on press, and he and some others were inspecting a press sheet when he spotted a little problem. "The word 'motorcycle' was misspelled," says Tucker, now state printing administrator.
Medifast, a portion-controlled, weight management program, is quickly becoming a leader in a competitive market. And according to Kent Hunter, supervisor at the company's Ridgely, Md.-based in-plant, MDC Printing, the various in-house services the shop provides are a key to the company's success. "The way this place is growing is incredible. The budget is open for the print shop and the management is very supportive."
THE AIIM/On Demand Conference and Exposition is returning to IPG’s home town of Philadelphia next month, taking place April 20-22. Some 10,000 people are expected to attend the three-day show, with hundreds of vendors planning to exhibit. To whet your appetite, IPG asked some key vendors what they plan to showcase at the Pennsylvania Convention Center.
MONITOR SOFT proofing allows many benefits in terms of time and convenience. With the current economic challenges, all printers must look at ways to increase efficiencies. Soft proofing and online collaboration were obvious solutions even before the current financial meltdown, and now the case for soft proofing is even more compelling.
A school located in the southeastern part of the Evergreen State might be expected to maintain a green state of mind. So, it's not surprising that the Washington State University Publishing office has established its own sustainability program, which promotes responsible usage of paper and other printing resources.