EFI's Marc Olin shares some features and releases talked about during EFI Connect 12
Published on April 28, 2011
Marc Olin, Senior Vice President of EFI, and Cary continue their chat to discuss some of the announcements and breakout sessions covered during EFI Connect 12 at the Las Vegas Wynn Resort.
Cary Sherburne: One of great things about Connect and conferences like that is the ability for the attendees to not only network with each other, but then to have an opportunity to meet with your many PhD’s and researchers and engineers and give them feedback. And also for the engineers to learn from the customers. Talk about that.
Marc Olin: Exactly, yeah, that’s really one of the most valuable things about Connect is for us to be able to hear first hand from the customers what they’re looking for out of the software because you know, we can sit in a lab and listen to ideas from the customers; well this is what makes sense or you know. But really, hearing that voice of the customer, them saying this is what we need to help improve our business, that’s really what’s going to drive the value of in the future.
Cary: And then finally one of the things that’s different this year in the lab is you have two different instances of an end to end workflow.
Cary: One of them is with RICOH with the C901?
Marc: 901, yes
Marc: And yes and the others with our Vutek printer and that personally is a great thing for me because it’s something we’ve been talking about every year since 1999 is this end to end workflow and last year we had some of it to show and now this year, full toner and Inkjet based workflow. So we’re going.
Cary: So tell me what that – I mean does it start with Fiery?
Marc: Well it really it starts at that point of acquiring the content from the customer. So we have our digital storefront application that’s grabbing the job from the customer. Customer logs into the website, picks the product that they want to purchase, that gets entered into our management system either Pace or Monarch. The system digests the job which has been priced already, brings all of that in, sets up the estimated time to produce the job, passes those estimates over to Print Flow automatically, our optimized scheduling system. Print Flow optimizes the scheduling of the job automatically, figures out where the best place to put all the different pieces of the job, all the dependencies are maintained and that schedule that Print Flow has now optimized is now passed down to the Fiery which is controlling the print queues. So either an Inkjet print queue or a toner-based print queue, we’re working through Fiery central that control all the devices simultaneously. And then that print queue then goes directly to the output device, either the Fiery or the View Tech and then those machines automatically print the job using the settings that first originated from the customer all the way back inside the digital storefront.
Cary: And then you’ve got the MIS doing the inventory and the billing and all of that.
Marc: Well right, I mean that’s the next piece of it, is that when you produce the job on those Fiery driven devices we’re now collecting how long it takes to produce the job. With the View Tech we’re actually getting real time ink consumption information from the device so you can actually understand what it costs in ink to produce the job. And that gets fed back to the MIS system, the schedule gets updated automatically and the scheduling environment from that shop floor report and all the costing data goes back to the MIS so now you can figure out what it actually costs to produce versus what the estimated costs were. So we’re closing the loop. It also updates the status on the website so that the customer can see whether the job’s been produced or not. So you really have a closed loop, lights out system for the first time that incorporates that end to end technology. And EFI’s really the only company that can bring that to the table cause we’re the only ones that have that technology to each piece of the equation where we’re managing that, so.
Cary: I know this has been a vision of yours for a long time. I remember meeting you the year that you launched Print Café. Was it Seybold Boston or San Francisco?
Marc: Seybold Boston actually. Yes.
Cary: Boston, that’s right.
Cary: Yep, yep.
Marc: I think you were at the party there as.
Cary: I was at the party.
Marc: Taj Mahal. It was a lot of fun and.
Cary: And so you’re seeing your dream come to fruition.
Marc: Yeah, it’s.
Marc: It’s fun. It took many years but it’s great to see and great to see that end to end link and it’s just the start here now, you know. We’ve got these workflows. We’re going to continue to improve them. We’re going to continue to try to bring more customers into the EFI umbrella. As we mentioned early in the year we acquired Print Stream this year, Radius last year. We’re going to continue to look for additional acquisitions, bring more MIS companies in and give you more stories to write about Cary.
Cary: Great. Well congratulations and good luck for a wonderful Connect this year.
Marc: Thank you very much Cary.
Cary: Thank you Marc.
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