For over 70 years, US-based Flagship Press has served its customers with the highest-quality print products. They did everything from books to direct mail, large format to promotional products with their range of offset and digital equipment. As their offerings expanded and their volumes grew, their existing workflow struggled to meet demands. Every task, including color management and correction, required a different software application, and there was no path to streamline automation. As work volumes grew, the only answer was to add more staff, adding cost and complexity that wasn’t sustainable.
As business more than doubled, they were processing more than 2,500 plates a month with hundreds of jobs moving through the workflow. Their processes took too long, often up to 30 minutes to get a single plate ready initially, and the same again if any changes were needed. They needed more efficiency to break the cycle of adding people to processes. They turned to Kodak for an integrated solution.
Efficiency through automation
The efficiencies gained with the Kodak solution eliminated the requirement to add people for new work. The new, slim team is six people where there had been 12, and each is handling 25% to 50% more work due to automation. Growing the business no longer means expanding the staff to keep up, driving more revenue to the bottom line.
The Kodak Prinergy Workflow with rules-based automation (RBA) has been their new workflow solution. They added Kodak Colorflow Pro for color management to support their G7 program, Kodak Preps to create their imposition and ganging layouts, and Kodak Insite Prepress Portal and Creative Workflow to create a closed-loop file approval process with their customers.
Meredith Nichols, director of Technology Development, stated: “The proof is in the numbers. For Flagship Press, Prinergy balances the playing field between the newest and most experienced operators. Experienced staff learned what they needed in less than three days. The previous workflow servers were unplugged within a month of the Prinergy installation, eliminating duplicate server and licensing costs. Some of the staff already had experience with Kodak solutions from previous jobs, leading to rapid acceptance. Everyone was involved from the start, contributing to the definition of rules for the workflow. Everyone had ownership, removing the fear of the unknown.”
The addition of Kodak Colorflow Pro allows them to do their color management upfront before any other processes begin. They decided on Colorflow Pro because it integrates into the workflow and honors the client’s color profiles. As a G7 shop, they have a process to follow to ensure that every job meets specific color guidelines, but the files arrive from clients and their designers in many states with many color models. Colorflow Pro automates the normalization processes so they can print the best color based on the substrate and the output device. And they can print it consistently within the job, as well as for every reprint, regardless of the output device.
Colorflow Pro also saves time and money by dramatically reducing the number of color corrections needed for each job. For customers, that means an equally dramatic reduction in color correction charges and faster time to print.
Savings in every step
By integrating Prinergy and Insite with their PrintMIS, Flagship Press enabled file uploads through the portal. Customers can now preflight and correct their files, and soft proofs are automatically available as jobs move seamlessly from Insite through prepress. No one touches a file unless an event triggers an email to the production manager to say something needs attention. Today it takes as little as five minutes to get from job entry to production-ready versus hours with their previous workflow. Waste is eliminated, operator time is reduced, and there is no more risk of mismatched job specifications.
Customers are happy, too. Firing up the Insite portal saves Flagship Press hours of interaction. Flagship Press made adoption as easy as possible by building quick start guides and offering demonstrations to show customers how the portal benefits them.
Moving to a PDF-centric workflow enabled by the Insite portal, inbound PDFs now arrive ready to print. Working with Flagship Press is more accessible for clients because they have any-time access through their desktop, laptop, tablet, or phone to approve files for production.
Flagship customers have embraced the power of the always-open communication portal and the savings they get from reducing the number of proof and approval loops. Now there are fewer calls and emails, leading to faster progress into production. Every aspect of the Prinergy, Colorflow Pro, and Insite implementation brings savings to Flagship Press that will continue for years to come.