n many print shops, the margins for print jobs are still unsatisfactory. At the same time, a growing number of print products are being ordered via web shops - a tool that virtually no print shop can now be without. The key to remaining competitive in the long term is the end-to-end automation of all process steps - starting with job creation in the print shop's MIS or web shop, through job printing, and all the way to the associated postpress operations. A highly modern, integrated, and modular workflow is at the heart of this process. And yet here, too, automated job creation usually requires a significant outlay in setting up the workflow due to the virtually endless number of format templates that can be used. This is why many companies are unwilling to go down this road. However, the new Prinect Smart Automation function from Heidelberger Druckmaschinen AG (Heidelberg) now makes it easy to switch to a fully automated process for job creation and job processing without compromising on efficiency.
HEI Productivity: Prinect Smart Automation enables fully automated job processing for mixed forms, too
The key to fast and simple job creation is for the print shop's workflow system to automatically and immediately identify the individual format templates used for each print job in order to process them in line with the customer requirements. Therefore, Prinect Smart Automation draws automatically on a pool of previously defined format templates (smart templates) as early as the job creation process and merges these to create a complete job description. This job description contains all the information needed to produce the job from start to finish. There is no need for manual intervention by the operator.
These job descriptions can be stored in a memory for mixed (gang) forms, known as the gang pool, so that the advantages of Prinect Smart Automation can also be applied to the production of mixed forms. This delivers very high savings in job processing. Upon request, Heidelberg can also support users the first time they create smart templates.
"For print providers today, there is only one alternative to automation - more automation! Initial user experiences show that consistent use of Prinect Smart Automation provides customers with a tool that boosts productivity by an average of 20 to 30 percent compared to a job processing system that is not fully automated," says Christopher Berti, Head of Prinect at Heidelberger Druckmaschinen AG.
HEI Integration: Fully automatic and simultaneous job creation now possible in web shop, MIS and production system
When print orders are placed in most web shops, a member of the print shop team usually has to re-enter the information in the MIS. This costs time and money. Heidelberg is the only manufacturer to offer a web shop with an integrated MIS and production system, i.e. Prinect Web-to-Print Manager, Prinect Business Manager, and the Prinect production system, thus enabling automated job creation in all three systems without manual intervention. This significantly increases productivity in processing web-to-print jobs while simultaneously reducing the number of errors. It also provides customer-friendly functions that make the overall process much faster and more efficient. For example, print buyers can be shown preflight reports and soft proofs for approval in the web shop of the Prinect Web-to-Print-Manager in an automated process. As the next step, Heidelberg plans to expand these functions further still.