Pensacola Go-Live – When Things Come Together Even Better Than You Imagined

I have honestly never experienced as smooth a Go-Live as we had last week in Pensacola, Florida.

Last week at the PCC Print Shop we installed and implemented PrintVis 2015 with a same-day Go-Live that included integration to:

  • AGFA ApogeeX 9.0 through JDF
  • A machine-count software on the web-fed presses (approximated JDF/JMF)
  • A scales and measure software (XML)
  • Warehouse scanners for full bin management
  • External warehouse system for customer
  • Additionally having 2 other bespoke integration points of order inflow and order updates
  • Our own Shop Floor system with extended bespoke functionality

So, not a simple setup. Also not the shortest project ever – actually the longest for me, going live 1½ years after the implementation startup, for various reasons.

Why would it take so long?

The main reason is the extensive planning, building and testing necessary to ensure the entire floorplan of systems are all talking together, as all of the integrations have been added on top of each other – and into the database. Testing, refining, tweaking until everything was just right.

Another big reason is the fairly small project group working around this.
On the customer side we had one project manager, one print specialist, one accountant and one controller. All customer resources minded their normal jobs during the process.

From PrintVis we had myself as Project Manager and PrintVis consultant, one main developer for integrations, two developer resources with minor project parts and one JDF specialist for the AGFA integration.

The project team comprised of these people kept everything tightly organized to make sure nothing would fall between the chairs.

And finally, some seasons are better than others for changing systems if you are printing school books which are highly seasonal – and therefore sensitive to takeover time, fall-outs or potential downtime.

So the planning was important.

On this issue, I would like to thank the PCC PrintShop for allowing us to postpone the Golive because I was blessed with my first granddaughter at a somewhat inconvenient time, project wise. I will never forget this.

 Go-Live Week

Peter and I came in on Monday, January 18th to prepare the crossover, clearing the test data, moving web services and communications routes and making sure all things were aligned, together with the PrintShop project team.

We went live on the morning of January 25th.

The week of January 25th was so quiet – as we phased out the old system and phased in orders in PrintVis.

I spent the week adding more BI to the system and assisting the users when the system would give them a message they did not expect. Peter made extra reports which we had planned for after Go-Live, and corrected a few reports and screens. That was it!

Of course, there is an issues list.

– and of course we will have occasional bumps and change requests. And I hope we will continue to have things to do, because all systems should be in progress, and when you find something you can make smarter and more automated – of course you should do so.

The beauty of the NAV database which PrintVis is built into – and certified for – is that we are very flexible.

I will attribute the easy transition and Go-Live to the wonderful people from the PCC Printshop team. It could honestly never have been done without their input, knowledge, persistance, attention to detail and technical compentencies. Thank you!

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