Dialog marketing specialist Paragon Customer Communications Schwandorf GmbH explains how the automation software Asura has significantly reduced the error rate for print jobs and optimized print quality, especially in the inkjet sector.
Every print service provider is challenged on a daily basis to complete a wide variety of print jobs as quickly as possible and in the best possible quality, always depending on the publication requirements. But what is the best way to do this? Andreas Mann, Prepress Manager of Paragon Customer Communications Schwandorf GmbH, shows how the implementation of personalized and individualized print campaigns goes hand in hand with a fully automated prepress process and which successes are achieved in terms of reliability, efficiency and print quality.
The dialogue marketing specialist is part of Paragon Group Limited and, with around 1,300 employees in six countries, it is one of the leading companies for individualized customer communication in Europe. The company supports retail customers across all industries, such as Payback, dm, T-Mobile and the Otto Group, in the implementation of marketing campaigns. In addition to comprehensive concept consulting, address and data management, the print service provider also creates a wide variety of print products for its customers, such as printed mailings in the form of cross folder direct mailings, pop-up self-mailers, bulk mail (mass print products), magazines and much more.
Job volume requires automation in prepress
Paragon Schwandorf has chosen the prepress automation software Asura to automate its prepress processes in order to meet the annual volume of approximately 1,000 web-fed printing jobs with over 3,000 versions and the significantly higher number of digital printing jobs. Linked to the workflow management system Workspace, Asura checks and optimizes all incoming print data. In layout programming, Asura automatically embeds watermarks in the PDFs – depending on the document name. For an error-free variable data printing – personalization is the be-all and end-all for a direct mailer – the VDP module uses specific criteria to determine the position of individual texts in documents and to capture the text in CSV files. The "Compare Documents" module compares documents and creates a reporting that clearly identifies deviations. Once the print data has been optimized, the files are transferred to the Apogee workflow system.
When it comes to printing, the company relies on sheet-fed and digital web offset printing as well as web offset printing. The in-house machinery consists of various offset and digital printing presses such as the HP Indigo, the Prosper Press from Kodak and the Rotoman from MAN Roland. More than 100 high-speed inkjet printing systems and finishing machines are used for finishing the printed products.
Samples of print products produced by Paragon Customer Communications Schwandorf GmbH.
Asura reduces error rate and improves print quality
Asked about the main advantages of using Asura, Andreas Mann explains: "The error rate for print jobs has been significantly reduced, while print quality – especially in the inkjet sector – is being optimized. Paragon Customer Communications has been a OneVision customer for many years and describes the system changeover three years ago as an important milestone for users: "Since Asura was linked to the Workspace workflow management system, we can create more flexible assembly lines and many individual steps run now fully automated. This increases our efficiency and production reliability. The prepress manager particularly appreciates the versatility and flexibility of the software. Thanks to the modular structure, the assembly lines in Workspace can be easily created and flexibly modified. The incoming customer files run through the defined workflow automatically. The structure of Asura is also modular, which then takes over the work on the PDF, with preflighting, color management, data normalization, variable data printing, document comparison, etc.
"Depending on the area of application, we have integrated the automatisms into the workflow or let them operate independently," says Andreas Mann. Each printing house can select the appropriate modules for itself depending on the individual requirements and thus achieve an optimal printing process. "OneVision offers a good, professional and advanced software solution to automate and optimize the daily work processes for creating print products," Mann concludes.
If there are unexpected problems or special tasks, the OneVision support team rushes to help. "We are very satisfied with OneVision's support. We can always rely on fast and competent help," says Andreas Mann.