This article is sponsored by PrintVis, makers of the PrintVis Print MIS solution as part of WhatTheyThink's Print Software Product Spotlight series. In preparing this article, the WhatTheyThink Print Software Section editors conducted original, in-depth research on the company and product. This Product Spotlight describes what the editors feel are the company and product’s strengths in the marketplace. PrintVis reviewed the final article for accuracy but had no editorial control over the content.
An industry in transition, the print manufacturing industry continues to be defined by how much it is changing in reaction to our increasingly digital world. Because the market is in a state of “flux” around us we cannot look at the past or the state of our current business as a beacon for what the future holds. Print companies are contracting and expanding at a rate that was unheard of a decade ago. The rapid rate of change can make decisions that made perfect sense two years ago look downright foolish when evaluated under current market conditions. The easiest example is the new press that was purchased at a peak business moment which now sits idle in a contracting business environment.
Print software investments can also look “stranded” under this rate of change. Print MIS solutions are segmented in the market by both the size of your overall operations and the types of manufacturing you operate (e.g. offset, flexo, digital). If you bought your Print MIS solution at the peak of your offset business and overall business size; yet your current business reality is fifty percent digital and half the overall business size, your current Print MIS is likely to be producing frustration as its main output. Flexibility has become a large part of the buying process, can this “investment” flex with my business in both directions (explosive growth and drastic contraction). We are living in dynamic times, supporting the status quo doesn’t cut it anymore. Don’t buy for today; make flexible investments based on the realities of the dynamic market you compete in.
The PrintVis MIS solution has a phenomenal product span, meaning the ability to “flex” in both directions, respond to growth and decline. Most Print MIS solutions are priced via the traditional software licensing model, you “buy” the product and then you pay annual maintenance. The PrintVis business model is simple and flexible. There is a single cost driver; the number of users (three different types based on roles offered at three different price points) on the system. If you’re a small manufacturing operation you can literally start with a single super user! ($299/month) This business model flexes with your business, as you grow you add more solution users, if you shrink; you decrease the number of users and the overall cost of the solution. Consider the positive scenario, you are a five million dollar operation today, you are on a growth trend due to some great sales efforts and some acquisitions of local competitors. If you move from five million to twenty million over a couple of years, you could be looking at as many as three painful Print MIS transitions. With PrintVis you would simply continue to add users as you grew and based on your IT expertise/preferences potentially move from a cloud based offering to hosting the solution on your premises if that made more sense for your new larger business reality.
In addition to the ability to “flex” with your business, the PrintVis solution is built on top of Microsoft Dynamics NAV ERP solution. What does this mean? Microsoft Dynamics NAV is a global ERP system used by thousands of companies around the world. Microsoft’s strategy is for partners to build vertical specific solutions on top of the core ERP system. PrintVis basically added a “print specific layer” to the Dynamics NAV solution. Print is different than other manufacturing, but there are also a lot of commonalities. This strategy allows PrintVis to focus on what makes print unique and let the core ERP functionality be handled by Microsoft based on feedback from a huge customer base and a large partner community. Software has to keep moving, when you buy software you are essentially buying a ticket on a train that is funded and operated by your software partner. In the case of PrintVis the core train engine is funded by Microsoft, the print-specific car is funded and operated by PrintVis. Your investment gets you the benefits of both, an overall software solution that will continue to move based on thousands of companies and a print-specific car that is funded by hundreds of other printers around the world.
As cloud computing continues to disrupt the traditional software space, more and more products can be deployed like PrintVis where you can “lease” access to a very robust solution when you want to limit your investment and the need for local IT support and infrastructure. Without the advances in cloud computing, there is no way PrintVis could possibly offer their solution for as low as $299/month.
When the core platform is Microsoft based you get integration to other Microsoft products. The Microsoft Office suite and Outlook become an extension of your Print MIS system. For example, you can write reports using the Office suite and then bring them back into PrintVis. By utilizing the tools your employees are already familiar with (e.g. Microsoft Word), you can make adoption easier and reduce training because you’re using tools your team is already familiar with.
As our industry continues to evolve and adapt to the new realities of the digital age, our print software infrastructure has to be able to flex and adapt with our business. Print MIS transitions are difficult and disruptive to your business, nobody wants to do a project like this more often than absolutely necessary. PrintVis gives you a flexible solution with a flexible business model that aligns your current use of the product with your current investment level.
For more information about the PrintVis MIS solution, visit http://printvis.com/