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GATF Sees Signs of Economic Upswing

Press release from the issuing company

Pittsburgh, Pa., May 15, 2002 — "It’s a small but good sign that the industry is rebounding," says George Ryan, president of the Graphic Arts Technical Foundation (GATF). Ryan reports that the GATF workshop, Color Management for the Pressroom being held April 28 through May 3, 2002, was sold out. "It tells me that printers have the foresight to spend money in this soft economy to learn how to implement a system that can reduce proofing cycles and thus save them money in the long run," comments Ryan. "Many managers also may see this slow period as an opportune time to send production personnel to a training class." Nevertheless the GATF is trying to accommodate the budget conscious printing industry. The Foundation has developed a "webinar" series. A webinar allows anyone with access to a computer using the internet and phone receive information conveniently and cheaply. Handouts are sent electronically yet participants have access to the speakers via an 800 toll-free conference number. Furthermore, this new education forum allows GATF to address timely issues and disperse crucial information. On March 26, 2002 the Foundation hosted its first webinar on OSHA compliance requirements. After many years of effort, OSHA has just revised its 20-year-old injury and illness recordkeeping system. The many changes to the regulations on recordability would affect facilities with more than 10 employees—a large majority of the industry. Furthermore, OSHA would begin compliance inspections on May 1, 2002. GATF acted quickly to develop a 90-minute informational session to provide the industry with what they needed to know and was able to offer the webinar for a mere $65 for PIA/GATF members ($95 for non-members). The demand for this new type of quick, timely, and economic information distribution was evident. Within a matter of four weeks, GATF was able to attract 81 registrations. GATF plans to develop more webinars in the near future. "Despite the current economic conditions, there will also be leaders who recognize the value of leaning how to reduce costs from less rework and spoilage; have faster turnaround times; and increase customer satisfaction," says Ryan. "These same people tend to be the profit leaders of our industry."