FREMONT California – Across four generations of passion and hard work, the family team at The Hartley Press says it has built its reputation on being a trusted partner and a conviction to do the job right. Company Vice President Kelly Banning feels that in a fast-moving world – where pressure on turnaround times continues to mount – the organization needed to ensure it was not behind the curve.
This led The Hartley Press to put its trust firmly in Electronics For Imaging, Inc. so it can continue to grow and maximize the potential of its skilled and immensely experienced workforce. Indeed, the company’s investment in theEFI™ Midmarket Print Suite, including the suite’s Pace™ and Process Shipper modules, has reduced quoting time by 50% and doubled productivity in the shipping department.
Based in Jacksonville, Florida, The Hartley Press counts national and international retail, pharmaceutical firms, cruise-ship companies, amusement-park operators, and magazine publishers in its client roster. The company’s management team realized over the course of the last two years that, despite this market-leading position, levels of efficiency and productivity in the business were behind the curve – as team members were still using many manual and analogue processes in their workflow.
“We had Pace MIS for many years, but we weren’t using it to its full potential. Instead, we were handling processes in a dated way, our staff wasn’t working as a cohesive unit, and we had too much human intervention in all sorts of functions across the company,” explained Kelly Banning.
Brett Banning, software administrator for the company, was instrumental in developing a new strategy to “bring them up to date and strengthen their competitiveness,” and the decision was made to invest in the EFI Midmarket Print Suite with Pace and Process Shipper.
Taking seven months to implement, validate and go-live with its new workflow, Brett Banning explained: “Fulfillment is getting bigger and bigger in our markets. We needed to upgrade our fulfillment and shipping systems to speed up our operations and get products out faster. This was critical for us, and it is now saving us hours on certain jobs.”
Kelly Banning added: “We also have a lot more information at our fingertips, we’re doing less re-keying of information on quotes and job jackets. We’ve speeded up our quotes by 50%, and we have better communication between departments. The suite has sped everything up and we have nearly doubled the number of packages we can ship.”
The EFI Midmarket Print Suite is a comprehensive, modular portfolio of cloud-based technology that creates an efficient and automated end-to-end workflow. The Hartley Press has been leveraging the power of EFI solutions even further, having invested in EFI Fiery® digital front-end servers to drive its toner-based presses.
Kelly Banning explained the key driving force behind the investments, and how they have helped the Hartley Press achieve its strategic goals: “We were not making the most of our potential and we saw this as an investment that would take us to the next level of growth. Things take a lot longer when you are not working as a cohesive unit on one system. Previously it was a very fragmented workflow – literally involving people running between different departments – and we needed it to be streamlined.”
The new workflow system includes a host of modules designed to complement the industry-leading Pace MIS software, such as the eCommerce platform EFI MarketDirect StoreFront. The company’s workflow also features powerful EFI tools for customer relationship management, advanced accounting, fulfillment, inventory management, warehousing and advanced prepress integrations – including JDF.
Kelly Banning also emphasized the mountain company executives imagined they would have to climb: “A lot of our employees have been here between 20 and 30 years, and we thought, it is really going to be difficult to get everyone to change. But everyone has moved over to it much easier than we anticipated, and it is making their jobs a lot easier. It’s just been such a positive experience – we have had a lot of great feedback. It has given our shipping department a new lease of life.”
The EFI Process Shipper solution installed as part of the company’s new workflow automates freight shipping by integrating with EFI Pace and other EFI MIS solutions. By eliminating touchpoints and accelerating workflows, the system lowers costs and transforms shipping departments into profit centers.
An additional strength of the investment has been the usage of all its fully upgraded features, which Kelly emphasizes has been of “great benefit to our sales force and significantly reduced pain points and frustration.” Sales staff can now work remotely and log on to see jobs throughout the workflow easily and keep on top of tracking information – all without needing to check in with the office.
The value of trust
Most crucial for Kelly, Brett and the whole senior management team is that EFI has worked with them as a partner and have become integral to achieving their goals.
“We haven’t been here 60 years because we aren’t trusted,” said Kelly Banning, adding: “Trust is very important to us, and we feel with EFI, they are taking you forward with them. They are responsive, the software is an investment that is a very good one, and it will make a difference and help us grow – which is huge. EFI are always thinking ahead, and we can grow with them, and that is a big deal.
“In the next couple of months,” she also noted, “we are going to be eons ahead of where we were at this time last year – in all departments.”
Brett Banning also articulated what the project has been like to manage and implement: “With EFI there are no unanswered questions, it was a huge amount of work for us to transition our whole team, but they took a lot of the headaches away and helped us move forward.
“We went from handwritten quotes and job jackets – meaning we were years behind – to a much higher level of efficiency and productivity. It is pretty outstanding.”
After such a successful implementation, The Hartley Press has decided that further investment would continue to benefit the company. In the coming months, the company intends to implement EFI Pace Scheduler to automate production scheduling and identify efficiencies to pursue further growth.
Additionally, a new data collection system has been implemented and it will be integrated into Pace in the months ahead. For the Banning family, the trust placed in EFI has been repaid, with The Hartley Press looking forward to an ever-strengthening relationship in the years ahead.
“EFI’s leadership in print and packaging workflows comes from an unwavering commitment to customer success – with best-in-class, integrated business and production management software, as well as service and support offerings to help ensure customers can drive efficiency to a new level,” said David Bentley, general manager, Midmarket, EFI Productivity Software. “The Hartley Press is reaping the rewards of its investment in the Midmarket Print Suite, and we are excited about how our best-in-class workflow solution is helping this customer achieve greater automation and improved productivity.”