Published October 9, 2019
Getting the return on investment for print software takes a lot more work by the people at the printer than you are led to believe in the software sales process.
Published October 2, 2019
The dream of an online business that delivers profitable revenue from strangers is a good dream to have. It simply takes a lot of work to be successful at it. I have seen too many printers spend too much time focusing on the software and forgetting that internet traffic is not free or easy to get.
Published September 25, 2019
Building good software requires a very desirable skill set in our current economy. Virtually every single company on the planet needs to utilize software in order to increase their efficiency and reach more customers.
Published September 18, 2019
Getting outside perspectives into your print business is important, especially when implementing a Print MIS or other print software. You want people who see a wide variety of print businesses to weigh in on best practices.
Published September 11, 2019
Define the challenge you're trying to solve before you jump into a shortcut that borrows from another feature in your Print MIS or web-to-print. If you borrow too much, you’re implementation of the software will get detached from the vendor’s product roadmap—which can be expensive and painful.
Published September 4, 2019
The value in the print industry today is migrating from the production floor to the mobile device of your customers. How are you investing in providing your customer access to your business from their phone?
Published August 28, 2019
Print software is a pile of features that solve business process challenges. You have to learn how to prioritize what’s the next most important feature in the software by comparing its impact against all the other features.
Published August 21, 2019
Don’t let a feature stop you from implementing what works for you today. Don’t let the people in your organization that are good at looking for all the ways something won’t work win. Implement what works and then find ways around the missing features. Waiting is keeping your business in neutral.
Published August 14, 2019
Print software gets thrown out by printers primarily because of factors that are 100% in the printer’s control.
Published August 7, 2019
Your print business has two kinds of challenges: the challenge of getting jobs out the door (tactical) and the business of continuing to strategically evolve so you maintain relevance and competitive advantage in the marketplace.
Published July 24, 2019
Learning is the most important part of software procurement decisions. The vendor needs to learn about you (to assess if you are a good fit for their solution) and you need to learn about the vendor. An RFP doesn’t facilitate any learning.
Published July 17, 2019
A learning event vs. a selling event—that is the event the print industry needs. An event where you go to solve your challenges through active collaboration, open-minded because nobody is trying to sell you anything.
Published July 10, 2019
Internal communication deserves better tools than email. Real collaboration happens best when more, not fewer, people are involved. Taking internal communication out of email reduces the cognitive overhead of deciding whom to communicate with.
Published June 26, 2019
Your print sales team has to evolve to understand and be able to sell the value of the software that enables print demand from business processes. Every printer should have a direct revenue line for their software.
Published June 19, 2019
The level of trust you have in the data in your Print MIS impacts all aspects of your business. When printers get their Print MIS to be “trustworthy,” they can move a whole lot faster, with less labor costs, and be more responsive to the never-ending request for more data from all stakeholders in your business.
Published June 5, 2019
Everyday, most of us choose the most important thing to work on. The employees in the carpeted area of your print business are making these decisions everyday. Do you know what they are prioritizing? Do you know how they are spending their time? You should measure time just like you measure revenues, profits, and costs.
Published May 29, 2019
Being strategic about print software is nearly impossible when you are in a crisis. Too many print software decisions are made under duress. When you have the discipline to plan before the crisis, you are being strategic.
Published May 22, 2019
Jennifer Matt reviews Slingshot by Avanti, and feels that its integrated warehouse management, multiple approaches to scheduling, and approach to implementation are its core strengths.
Published May 15, 2019
The toolset for solving business workflow challenges has completely changed in the last decade. If the only tool(s) you’re deploying are email, spreadsheets, and/or PDFs, you are using yesterday’s tools to solve today’s challenges.
Published May 8, 2019
All print business owners want more data about their businesses so they can make better decisions. It isn’t about reporting packages or business intelligence tools—it’s really about how your business generates data on a daily basis.
Published May 1, 2019
I wish all customers’ top priority was purchasing high-quality print; it isn’t. Your customer’s have upstream problems. The printers who go upstream and solve these problems will be rewarded as manufacturers downstream.
Published April 24, 2019
Learning is the experience of trying to do something without parental supervision. It is not watching a trainer do something and shaking your head that you understand. Holding your people accountable for learning activities is the most important part of improving user adoption of new tools in your print business.
Published April 17, 2019
Your print business is rich with patterns. By looking at patterns we can find ways to codify those patterns into processes that make us more efficient. You need real human processing for your business—free this up by taking the recurring stuff off their plates.
Published April 10, 2019
Automation starts with an understanding of the business process and how it’s done “manually.” Documenting this business process is called a “standard operating procedure” which is where you can begin your journey to some level of automation.
Published March 27, 2019
Your customers want convenience. Printers who prioritize around making it easy to do business with their customers will differentiate themselves. Don’t wait until your best customers demand online ordering and self-service access to the business they do with you—do it proactively and strategically instead of under duress.