July 2007 Issue


‘We Doubled Our Color’

Compared to last year, color printing at Colgate University’s in-plant has jumped 96 percent since the Hamilton, N.Y., shop installed a pair of Xerox 250s. But the best part, says Bob Keats, director of Document and Mail Services, is the quality of that color. “We really, really, really liked the quality of the printing,” he says. “It’s much better than what we had previously.” Another boon: the operators can replace many of the parts themselves. “You don’t have to wait for a service guy,” Keats says. This is a big deal because of the in-plant’s semi-remote location, in central New York state. The shop

A Leader Steps Aside

THOSE JUST returning from the IPMA conference, still aglow from the excitement and camaraderie of the three-day event, may be shocked to hear this piece of news: IPMA President Mike Loyd, whose enthusiasm invigorated every aspect of the conference, has announced his decision to take early retirement from Louisiana State University, where he has worked as director of Graphic Services for the past 12 years. The news has had reverberations around the entire printing industry, where Mike has been a well-known figure for many years. Not only is he president of IPMA, the largest in-plant association in the world, he’s a past host

A Smart Career Choice

HAD IT not been for Vietnam, Gary Boyd might never have become a printer. Instead, the manager of Iowa State University Printing & Copy Services would probably be an independent contractor today, managing his own construction company. One of five children born in a small, central California town to parents possessed of a nomadic spirit, Boyd traveled around quite a bit as a child. He attended schools throughout the state, before eventually graduating from high school in the East Bay region of California. “My father and older brothers were all involved in the construction industry,” says Boyd. So from an early age, he was

Adobe/Kinko’s Link Has Industry Fuming

Adobe’s decision to add a connection to FedEx Kinko’s Print Online application to its new Adobe Reader 8.1 and Acrobat 8.1 has printers up in arms. Several hundred in-plants signed a petition of protest that calls the link “an unnecessary and invasive interference in our organization’s business.” NAPL, a trade association for printers, wrote Adobe CEO Bruce Chizen to stress the disappointment of its members. And PIA/GATF issued a statement saying the printing industry “felt terribly betrayed” by Adobe. The free Adobe Reader 8.1 has a “Send to FedEx Kinko’s” option within the File menu plus a FedEx Kinko’s beacon icon on the main

Digital Paper Tips

A digital print job is only as good as the paper used. To ensure you are getting the most out of your digital print jobs, IPG spoke with industry suppliers, who shared some important tips. Identifying Quality Paper Formation, which is the uniformity of fiber distribution, affects a paper’s strength, runnability, consistency in caliper and print performance. Hold a sheet of paper up to the light and observe the uniformity. Paper with poor formation will have an inconsistent, splotchy appearance. Copy paper should be lightweight with a degree of opacity so that it will move through the photocopier rollers easily, and neither curl nor become brittle

InfoPrint Turns In-plant Around

Like many insurance companies, 21st Century Insurance Group relies on printed communications to keep in touch with customers. In recent years, however, the Woodland Hills, Calif.-based company’s in-plant had not grown as quickly as its customer base. So the company turned to InfoPrint Solutions Co. (IPS), the new joint venture between IBM and Ricoh. IPS helped the company move from a traditional 1980s mainframe-driven operation to an automated document factory. “The InfoPrint solution enabled us to replace a number of existing systems, improve operational efficiency and increase our printing speeds,” remarks Jim Chalker, director of IT at 21st Century Insurance Group. “Better yet, the solution

IPMA 2007 Conference: More Than OK

LAST MONTH’S In-plant Printing and Mailing Association (IPMA) conference certainly provided a packed schedule of activities for those lucky enough to have attended. It boasted a blend of technology demos, educational sessions, plant tours, networking, baseball, Indian dancing, an Olympic medalist and a small dose of hypnotism. Digital color printing was a popular topic, with at least four sessions and numerous informal discussions dedicated to it. Other hot subjects were PDF workflows, marketing, best practices and mail. After the sessions, attendees took strolls along the Oklahoma City Bricktown river walk with new friends from all over the country, then cheered their colleagues during

MFP Decision Time

THE DIGITAL printing industry has come a long way from the stand-alone copier-only functionality of a few years ago. Still, many users find themselves unable to take full advantage of the available technology. The key to implementing advanced document technologies is education at all levels of the organization. The in-plant manager plays an important role in educating others about improving document workflow efficiencies. This article will help in-plant managers make decisions regarding new digital copiers/multifunctional printers (MFPs), both for their own in-plants as well as for other locations within the organization. Key Vendor Questions Before inviting a vendor in to discuss new

Ohio Office of State Printing Doubles in Size

On July 1 the Ohio Office of State Printing doubled in size to 89 staff positions after the state’s mainframe printing operation was moved from the IT department to State Printing and Mail Services. The mainframe operation, with an annual production volume of over 88 million impressions, will now report to State Printer Joe Tucker. As of the first of this month, Tucker has also taken over the operations of a large fulfillment operation run by the Department of Job and Family Services. This 28-employee operation has seven large inserting machines and does an average of 44 million pieces of mail annually.

Principal Financial Adds 10th NexPress

It was big news when The Principal Financial Group installed its first five Kodak NexPress 2100 digital presses beginning in 2003. Then the Des Moines, Iowa, company added a sixth NexPress 18 months ago. And now, with business booming at The Principal’s 120-employee Print to Mail operation, the company has made history by adding four NexPress 2500s, making it the largest single-site NexPress user in the world. “Those machines just run non-stop” at the end of each quarter, says Rex Brooker, manager of the Document Automation Team. They are busy pumping out 401k statements for the company’s growing Retirement and Investor Services (RIS) business unit. Brooker

Pro Bono Job Pays Off

WHEN PHILLIPS Petroleum merged with Conoco Inc. in 2002, the resulting international energy company, Conoco-Phillips, had more that just its petrochemical assets to consider. Both Phillips and Conoco had operated first-class in-plants, and the Fortune 500 firm had to decide what to do with them. 

Securian Lands Six-color Press

Installing a six-color press in an in-plant is like witnessing a total solar eclipse. It doesn’t happen often, but when it does, it is a big deal. Securian Financial Group’s in-plant recently discovered that the rare can happen. Thomas Neckvatal, director of Graphic Services, says his operation recently purchased a six-color, 40˝ Heidelberg CDLX press to accommodate its ever-growing business. “It is unusual in this day for in-plants to have large-format presses,” acknowledges Neckvatal. “Our business has been developed to the point that we have emulated commercial vendors and have attracted commercial grade business; therefore, the need to have the level of commitment needed to