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Justin Zastrow at JP Graphics Inc stresses the importance of a CIO in an organization

Published on February 21, 2011

Justin Zastrow, CIO for JP Graphics, tells Cary why organizations needs a Chief Information Officer, how they can help automation and lessen make-ready times.

Cary Sherburne:  Hi, I'm Cary Sherburne, Senior Editor at WhatTheyThink.com, and I'm here with Justin Zastrow from JP Graphics.  And Justin, you’re, as we talked before, you're the Chief Information Officer and they brought you in about eight years ago, you said, to really to streamline the operation.  Maybe you could talk a little bit about why you think that's important in the printing industry.

Justin Zastrow: I think with the… with the competition the way it is right now and the industry being a little bit soft, we have to find ways of doing the jobs quicker and with more accuracy.  And I think with my role, that's really what we're trying to achieve is shorter make-ready times on press, shorter make-ready times on this stitchers and the way to do that is all with automation through MIS systems and workflow.

Cary: And how did your company recruit you, where did they find you?

Justin: Actually, I was working for a company in Green Bay, Wisconsin and I wanted to get a little bit closer to home and I saw that they actually had a newspaper ad for the job, so I went in and got the job.

Cary: Well, that's great, that's great.  So they were actually just reaching out to the general hiring practices.  I mean, because a lot of times people will work with a college or university to get an intern to do that kind of stuff, but they literally just had out in the paper.

Justin: Yes they did.

Cary: That's great.  And so, you know, I talked to a lot of printers as you can imagine, and I find that many of them don't have anybody, you know maybe they have their pre-press person who knows something about computers, but they really don't have anybody at your level in their company.  It seems like that would be almost one of the most important hires they would need to be these days.

Justin: Yeah, I really think that it's really important with the way that the industry is going and I look at the auto manufacturing or… auto industry in the 70s and they had to completely change the way they were doing business in order to compete with people overseas I think.  I don't think we're competing overseas as much with printing, but where were competing in the regional area.  And, you know, as much automation and you can put into your company is going to benefit you in the future.

Cary: Well, and the truth is that I think people are now really competing whether they realize it or not, they're competing on a national basis because of all the companies that are able to operate over the web.  You know, look at Vista Print, for example, and I know you don't do business cards, but or the direct mail kind of things that they do, but they've been able to... they manage 54,000 jobs the day.  You know, with a minute or less than a minute of human intervention on each job.  And not everyone's going to make it at that level, but it's certainly something to look at.  And if you were trying to print business cards and trying to print the things they were and you weren't automated you couldn't compete.

Justin: Absolutely.

Cary: Yeah, so well congratulations.

Justin: Thank you.

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