McKinsey’s Global Automation Survey Has Valuable Insights for Production Printers

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Reviewing OutputLinks Communications Group Services
By Andy & Julie Plata 

McKinsey & Company’s second Global Survey on automation has many interesting insights for production print companies. The survey’s findings stimulated our thinking about areas where production printers assessing automation upgrades should be considering.

  1. Automation bulbA tactical approach with tangible objectives is important for the success of automation initiatives. The project must be planned, scheduled, and monitored. The progress must be consistently measured against the plan.
  2. Automation is not a siloed project. It must be cross-functional across the entire Company which means the whole business infrastructure must be reviewed and updated as needed to be in sync with production optimizations in associated departments. (Remember that children’s song: The foot bone’s connected to the leg bone. The leg bone’s connected to the knee bone…).
  3. Successful automation initiatives can’t be start/stop/start again projects. They must begin and proceed until completed.

Two-thirds of businesses, across all industries, have automation initiatives in place according to McKenzie. A good example is our Software Assistance division.

Software Assistance provides print infrastructure support to many of the largest automotive, financial services and retail businesses. Over the past few months, that division has more projects than it had over the past four years. This shows that the country’s largest firms are optimizing their operations for increased profits and the ability to adopt increased digital initiatives.

Smaller companies (which include most production printers in North America) are less likely to have automation initiatives. That despite the fact per McKenzie’s study smaller firms that automated have had greater success than the largest enterprises.

Software Assistance is a division of the OutputLinks Communications Group. Its automation optimization practice includes a project manager and a team of subject matter experts matched to each client’s technologies and processes across the entire business, from order entry office to order delivery. A “whole company” approach to automation drives on time, on budget, ROI positive results.

COVID-19 has accelerated recognition of the importance of automation for a successful post-pandemic recovery. A successful automation initiative will drive greater profit from existing and new clients by minimizing scale-up costs to accommodate the added business.

The McKinsey article outlines steps to success in automation initiatives. It is worth the short-read time.

In closing

Our goal was to review best practices in automation for production printers and to create awareness of our Software Service division's automation assistance services. We trust we have stimulated ideas for enhancing your focus on the opportunities to be gained from automation. If we have also stimulated interest in how our Software Service’s divisions can help you achieve your business optimization objectives, just schedule a call below.

Thanks for Reading.

Promoting print tech for the digital age,
Andy & Julie Plata
Co-CEOs, the OutputLinks Communications Group

Stay tuned for our continuing Commentary on the changing print-tec industry environment and its effect on clients, employees, dealers, partners, and stockholders in the global print industry.



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