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Integrated workflow helps printer meet tight deadline

Jul 1, 2009 12:00 AM


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With 18-employees and $3.5 million in sales, Millennium Press (Agawam, MA) doesn't rank among the largest printers. But when it comes to workflow efficiency, few can surpass it.

The all-Heidelberg shop's most recent addition is a 6-color Heidelberg Speedmaster XL 75 with Prinect Press Center and Prinect Peak Performance Package installed. Millennium's workflow includes Heidelberg's Prinect Prinance MIS, as well as a Suprasetter 75 thermal platesetter with Prinect Prepress Manager.

Recent Prinect installations and upgrades include Remote Access, Integration Manager, Pressroom Manager, Archive System, Digital Print Manager and Scheduler. The company also has installed the new Prinect Press Center with Wall Screen application. Millennium reports a steady increase in Web-based orders for business cards, postcards and flyers via the Prinect Direct Access customer portal.

Can you turn this job around today?

Millennium's Prinect modules mean smooth sailing for rush jobs. Company president Jim Sullivan recalls an online inquiry for a quick-turn order. Early that morning, the Web connect logo in Prinect Direct Access flashed, indicating that Millennium had just received an order for 20,000 4/4+AQ 8.5 × 11-inch flyers on 100-lb. gloss text, cut and boxed. A PDF was supplied with the order.

The DirectAccess shopping cart streamlined the ordering process. “The job specifications were already loaded and the estimate linked to those specifications, so the customer knew the price up front,” Sullivan explains. But the flyers, ultimately destined to be inserted into newspapers, had to be printed that day. “If you can't do it, don't proceed,” warned the customer.

But Sullivan knew Millennium could do it. “After bringing the customer-supplied PDF into Prepress Manager, we RIPped the file and supplied the customer with an automated proof via Prinect Remote Access,”he recalled. “It was quickly approved, after which the job was off to Meta Dimension to create an imposition proof.”

When the proof was output, Sullivan noticed that the customer's geometry was off on the second page. “We simply opened the PDF in Prepress Manager, made a quick adjustment, and sent the file for plating.” Millennium's fully automated platesetter output the plates while the press operator finished the current job and set up the new one according to the electronic JDF job ticket he had already received from Prepress Manager. Even with the customer's error, the job was in prepress for less than 10 minutes.

Piece of cake on press

“The job was a piece of cake on our Peak Performance Speedmaster XL 75,” said Sullivan. “We ran the first side, loaded it into our POLAR pile turner and back onto press for the second side. We ran the job as a work-and-turn to save on makereadies and plates.”

Last stop for the job was Millennium's Polar 115XT Autotrim. “We called the customer for pickup at our dock just three hours and 49 minutes after the order was received,” Sullivan said. “They thought we were joking!”

See www.us.heidelberg.com and www.millenniumpress.com.