One Complete Solution for One Very Diverse Industry
Everywhere you look you see commercially-printed products: Packaging, books, magazines, labels, signs, newspapers, business cards, brochures, manuals, letterhead, artwork on walls, t-shirts, flyers and promotional items – you name it, it’s been printed.
Because paper can get quite heavy, it’s usually cost-prohibitive to ship large print orders over long distances; especially since those orders are typically needed within a short delivery window. So printing companies tend to spread out geographically, and most produce a large variety of printed products to meet consumer demand.
While the total number of commercial printers has declined with the rise of digital media, printing still makes for the largest number of companies in all manufacturing, with nearly 23,000 commercial printing companies in the U.S. alone. But of this number, did you know that about 70% of these companies have fewer than 10 employees? (Source)
Printing companies often define themselves not by what they produce, but by the process in which they produce it – sheet-fed, web-fed, digital, flexo, litho, screen, letterpress, bookbinder, etc.
Common Pain Points for Commercial Printers
Typically, a large number of quotes and orders is handled every day. Some quote requests require extremely complex calculations and options, others can just overwhelm by sheer number. In either case an error can make the difference – not only in winning or losing an order, but also winning the job and then losing money on it – by misjudged materials usage, press time, promised delivery date, etc.
The job managing departments are staffed with highly experienced printing experts who need to be supported by a sophisticated system which makes it possible to get a quick overview of the cost, status and progress of an order.
Many orders also involve subcontracting work for other processes which cannot be handled under one roof. The printer with the best price and shortest delivery period will typically win the job due to very tough competition.
Full visibility through the entire production cycle – from estimation to production planning and job costing and finally delivery and invoicing will give the competitive edge to a printer.
Healing the Common Pain Points of Commercial Printers
Despite the wide variety of processes, commercial printing companies usually share the same pain points. That is the need for quick and accurate estimates, the ability to manage a large number of small orders, overseeing inventory and minimizing waste, dealing with sub-contractors, getting accurate job costing after the fact, communication between management and production, flexible planning and electronic job tickets to cope with constant last-minute changes.
PrintVis is the print-centric, vertical solution for Microsoft Dynamics NAV that covers all of these pain points and more. We have been working with the printing industry for more than 20 years and now have over 250 installations worldwide – and that number grows every year.
PrintVis is a cost-effective and flexible modular solution that is exceptionally scalable, so it can grow as your business grows. PrintVis offers multiple user types and deployment options to suit your business and your budget. And to those of you in the 70% with 10 or fewer employees: PrintVis is perfect for you. Microsoft ERP is for “SMB” – Just check out the link below:
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Put another way, PrintVis is the perfect solution for both the humble quick print on the corner and the $80 million commercial printing juggernaut whose name is known by all.
The most common form of printing, the term Commercial Printing covers all sorts of printing for “daily use” and includes all kinds of commercial printing products, such as posters, brochures, folders, books and booklets, and manuals. The product range also includes business stationery such as letterhead, business cards, etc.
PrintVis offers an all-in-one solution for commercial print, covering any offset, digital or other standardized printing, with a wide range of standard pre and post-press processes covered through a simple setup.
Because there is such variety in the products there is the need to cover multiple processes in the finishing department. Most companies use multiple machines which are automated and semi-automated, but manual table work is still required for a great many production orders. Because commercial print applications can be the most widespread and the most demanding in terms of special requirements for each individual order, PrintVis guides your staff through the needed process for each individual product line or product group.
PrintVis provides secure and accurate estimation and quoting, enabling you to be practically print-ready when quotes become orders. Your staff will have full overview of actual costs as well as self-costs for the entire job – granting you the competitive edge of knowing exactly how far you can go when job bidding turns tough.
The Advantage of Integration
Integration for commercial printers is often reduced to one definition called JDF (Job Description Format). In fact there are other possible and reasonable integrations – but JDF is the global standard for the print industry. JDF integration makes it possible to merge the data flow between administration and production. This helps to avoid unnecessary data input, to provide machine presetting data and to get workflow feedback about the job’s status.
JDF Integration is a hefty topic on its own – learn more about it here.