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PECOM JobPilot & PressMonitor celebrate GATF InterTech at Graph Expo

Press release from the issuing company

October 11, 2002 -- McCormick Place, Chicago — Two new software modules that advance the capabilities of MAN Roland’s PECOM press operating and networking system have received a 2002 InterTech Technology Award from the Graphic Arts Technical Foundation. The innovations — called JobPilot and PressMonitor — enhance print production workflows by accelerating makeready, expediting repeat jobs, and tracking operational and performance details on every project. Both modules will be part of the PECOM press operating system on the Roland 500 that is being demonstrated at the MAN Roland exhibit. JobPilot and PressMonitor will also star in their own display, which offers showgoers a hands-on look at the productivity of the PECOM system. JobPilot creates, edits and organizes the electronic job tickets that enable printers to preset more than 100 automated functions on their MAN Roland equipment, while the press prints the previous job. That maximizes uptime, while minimizing makeready time. To facilitate the printing of repeat jobs, JobPilot can repurpose job ticket content information for exact reruns. Similarly, JobPilot can use job ticket content information to create templates that give the printer the opportunity to develop house standards on every job type that he runs, further accelerating the makeready process. When used as a quality control tool, JobPilot provides access to the print quality information from both current and completed projects, storing the data as content in the job ticket. JobPilot also connects the pressroom to a facility’s front office. The innovation can integrate the print production job ticket into the database of a management information system (MIS), facilitating the automated creation of tickets and forms. In nominating JobPilot for an InterTech, several users described their experiences with the technology: "JobPilot allows us to reduce the average makeready by about 10 minutes," said George Kallas, President and Founder of Metropolitan Fine Printers in Vancouver. "But more importantly it expands press uptime. Our eight-color MAN Roland 700 is producing while the next job is keyed in on JobPilot. By making us more productive, JobPilot is saving our customers money. And in today’s tight economy, they appreciate that a lot." "In addition to reducing the amount of time required to pull the first sheet, the system also reduces the amount of time and waste (paper and ink) required to achieve standard density," wrote Jim Kosowski, Vice President of Rapid Impressions in Broadview, Illinois. "The quality of our printed product is also higher. By presetting the ink keys digitally rather than manually, we achieve better color consistency across the sheet, as well as better color balance." "The ability to preprogram the makereadies and have one person responsible have been most rewarding," declared Mark Steputis, President and CEO of Vision Graphics Inc. in Loveland, Colorado. A Real-Time Window PressMonitor is a remote and real-time window into the press. Capable of running on any appropriate Windows-driven workstation, it has the ability to access the working status of jobs currently in production. That provides pressroom management with the ability to monitor all pressroom shifts continuously, even from the comfort of a home computer. That level of hands-on management can further improve throughput on a continual basis. Plus, PressMonitor can call-up print production data on completed work. That results in an accurate review of actual events that occurred during the print run. PressMonitor can reveal pressroom trends that otherwise would have gone unnoticed. For instance, one PressMonitor-equipped printer changed to a lesser quality cardboard to cut costs. But PressMonitor revealed that the savings were non-existent because the cheaper stock generated more dust in the press, doubling the amount blanket wash-ups required every week. The reviews from the nominating users of PressMonitor evoked similar experiences: "Our pressroom manager stays far more informed and our ability to manage has been greatly improved," noted Steputis. "The PressMonitor PECOM module is a manager’s dream machine," Kallas wrote. "It allows us to monitor the performance of our MAN Roland 700 from anywhere in our facility and in real time. PressMonitor is an excellent analytical tool as well, because it remembers everything it learns." "PressMonitor enables us to measure how efficiently we produce printed jobs by evaluating makeready times, the number of trip-offs, production times and speeds, the number of wash-ups, etc., " stated Kosowski. "We utilize this information in purchasing decisions, scheduling, personnel evaluations, and training decisions." New for PressMonitor: a portable tablet PC option that enables production managers to take their "electronic pressroom window" with them wherever they roam. Called Rover, the device incorporates a video camera that can be used to relay live press action to MAN Roland’s Rapid Response Team to faciliate remote diagnosis and repair. The advanced PECOM modules innovate pressroom staffing by allowing printers to clone their best press operators. Using JobPilot and PressMonitor, a printer’s most accomplished operator can control and oversee an entire pressroom full of machines. Plus, PECOM imparts a precision process to even the most chaotic pressroom. Settings are remembered; house standards are established; and precision is maintained, no matter who is running the press, so every pressman becomes the plant’s best operator. The design characteristics of the Advanced PECOM System were a contributing influence to MAN Roland's participation as one of the four initial developers of the Job Description Format (JDF). That helps ensure the long-term viability of the system. JobPilot and PressMonitor are backward compatible, configured to work on virtually any PECOM-equipped press. That includes machines built in the early 1990s. The Advanced PECOM System and the PECOM PressCenter are unique in that they allow early adopters of MAN Roland digitally controlled presses to take advantage of the latest in CIM and DMI production. By equipping printers to embrace Computer Integrated Manufacturing, the advanced PECOM Systems provide a more structured, scientific and successful way of doing business for the printer that uses them. "We printed 50% more work in the first quarter of this year compared to the same quarter last year," Kosowski said. "We did so with one less person and a decrease in total factory labor costs." More information about PECOM and its InterTech innovations can be obtained by calling 630.920.2000 or visiting www.manroland.com.