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Streamlining Production Print Workflows: Challenges and Solutions

(Length: 18:12)

In the fast-paced world of production printing, where businesses strive to maximize efficiency and reduce costs, the challenges presented by the complex workflow are ever-evolving. For over 30 years, Solimar Systems has been at the forefront of providing solutions to hundreds of production print centers worldwide. This article delves into these companies’ typical challenges and explores how Solimar Systems’ solutions can significantly enhance efficiency and cost-effectiveness.

Understanding the Production Print Workflow
Before diving into the specifics of the challenges and their solutions, let’s grasp the intricate production print workflow. It starts with the source data, which is then sent to a composition engine responsible for formatting output and generating print files. Once the printing is complete, the hardcopy output proceeds to finishing equipment, where inserts are added, and materials are placed into envelopes for mailing. Additionally, electronic delivery is increasingly a part of the mix, catering to internal and customer needs.

Common Workflow Challenges
1. Disconnected Databases: In most cases, different lines of businesses generate source data from separate databases, making it challenging to coordinate accurate customer addresses and define downstream processing rules, such as householding.
2. Legacy Applications: Dealing with legacy applications developed decades ago can be cumbersome. They might output different print languages or inefficient data that fails to meet rated speeds on modern printers.
3. Control Marks and Barcodes: Printed output requires control marks or barcodes to instruct finishing equipment on handling it, further complicating the workflow.
4. Undeliverable Mail: Incorrect addresses often lead to returned mail, causing additional costs and delays.
5. Electronic Delivery: In the digital age, companies must provide electronic delivery options for customers, agents, and customer service representatives.
6. Job Management and Compliance: Gathering job management information and ensuring compliance across the workflow adds another layer of complexity.

Solimar Systems’ Solutions
Solimar Systems offers a comprehensive suite of solutions known as “Chemistry,” designed to address various aspects of the production print workflow. Here’s how these solutions seamlessly integrate with the workflow to deliver substantial benefits:

1. Connectivity and Print Stream Conversions: Solimar Systems helps transport print data from host systems to the printer of your choice, providing production job management and piece-level tracking. This ensures smoother, more efficient operations.
2. Data Modifications and Enhancements: To maximize production printing efficiencies, Solimar Systems can perform data optimizations, modifications, or enhancements on the fully composed print output. This ensures that your output meets the required standards.
3. Electronic Delivery and Archive System: Besides driving printers, Solimar Systems provides an electronic delivery and archive system, making it easier to handle all customer correspondence, whether physical or digital.

Solutions for Specific Challenges
Let’s explore how Solimar Systems’ solutions address the critical challenges faced in production print environments:

1. Getting the Most Out of Your Investments: Solimar Systems enables you to support output on various devices, regardless of the format in which the data is generated. This means you can utilize legacy mainframes and newer applications to ensure you get the most out of your equipment.
2. Streamlining Your Workflow: The system allows load balancing and redirecting output based on workloads and printer status. It can also batch similar jobs together, enabling larger runs for increased efficiency. Pull lists and automated processes ensure timely mailings and eliminate unnecessary delays.
3. Reprints Made Easy: Dealing with reprints is often costly and time-consuming. Solimar Systems offers options for page-range reprints, automated workflows, and quick identification of pieces that need reprinting. This significantly reduces downtime and resource consumption.
4. Cost Savings Initiatives: Implementing duplex printing, using digital inserts, scaling pages, and promoting e-delivery over print are effective cost-saving strategies. Solimar Systems helps in identifying such opportunities and implementing them effectively.
5. Mailing Efficiency: The system helps reduce postage costs and minimize the hassle of returned mail by extracting address blocks and ensuring address accuracy. It also enables the inclusion of additional content in mailings to engage and inform customers effectively.
6. Adding Value to Print Files: Solimar Systems can modify fully composed print data without complex scripting or programming, introducing standardization to your workflow. This not only saves time but also reduces the need for manual processes.
7. Electronic Delivery: The system supports electronic delivery initiatives, making it easy to provide secure access to electronic documents for external customers and internal users. This not only saves money but also improves customer satisfaction and productivity.

Key takeaways
In the challenging world of production print environments, Solimar Systems offers solutions that streamline workflows, enhance efficiency, and reduce costs. Solimar Systems empowers businesses to operate smoothly, save money, and provide top-notch service to their customers by addressing common workflow challenges related to data compatibility, standardization, and electronic delivery.

For more insights and case studies on how your peers reduce costs and optimize their production workflows, browse the Solimar Systems website or contact our team to discuss your specific needs. The future of production printing is all about efficiency, cost-effectiveness, and customer satisfaction, and Solimar Systems is leading the way to make it a reality.

Mary Ann Rowan

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