tilia Phoenix minimizes order to production cycle; prep time cut in half
Ottawa, Canada – US labels specialist Inland Packaging has revealed that tilia Phoenix dedicated AI technology has streamlined production at its facility in La Crosse, Wisconsin, USA and facilitated an ongoing program of technical innovation. The solution from Tilia Labs, a leading developer of planning, imposition, and automation software solutions for the graphic arts industries, has been saving many hours on customer orders since its installation as well as delivering huge efficiencies for prepress operatives.
Inland Packaging made the decision to invest in tilia Phoenix to alleviate pre-production bottlenecks that were becoming increasingly problematic with a growing customer base and more jobs per customer.
“Things that work when you’re smaller don’t work when you have double, triple, quadruple the orders. As production ramped up, the amount of manpower we would need to force jobs through was daunting,” says Inland’s Business Analyst and Programmer, Willie Spindler. “My chief concern was ensuring that, from order to production, the amount of effort required is as minimal as possible. After getting Tilia Labs in to give us a demo, we realized right away that Phoenix was exactly the solution we’d been looking for.”
Tilia Phoenix is a sophisticated, open-API planning and imposition application that uses Artificial Intelligence (AI) to fully automate the creation of effective, print-ready impositions across potentially millions of possibilities. Before discovering the tilia Phoenix solution, pre-production had been a very manual process for the Inland team.
“Our comboing and gang-run process essentially involved our planners looking at a set of demand orders and, through tribal knowledge and years of experience, picking and choosing what they thought would be best,” explains Spindler. “Our planning department now saves a huge amount of time and for customer orders many hours are being saved. We’ve got integration built up-front that feeds Phoenix these demand orders so there’s no issues with data entry.”
The system factors in parameters, such as job specifications (quantity, dimensions, colors, substrates), presses/print devices, postpress requirements, and delivery considerations, to suggest optimal layout options. When a final option has been selected, tilia Phoenix generates print-ready layouts and JDF or die instructions, for all devices in the production chain.
As well as up-front tasks, Inland has felt the benefit of Phoenix’ open architecture through the entire job fulfilment. Feeding Phoenix exports downstream has enabled the company to eliminate data entry duplication and potential errors: “It has saved us huge amounts of time in our planning department. The prep department is now taking a fully stepped PDF and creating plates from it – their time has been cut in half.”
Exploiting a Phoenix feature called Cover Sheet, which allows Inland to embed product info into the barcode, tilia Phoenix has made the company’s verification systems much more effective. “We can use it to help sort combo jobs into the right boxes and eliminate those mixed bundles that would otherwise happen,” says Spindler.
Inland Packaging is a leading supplier of sophisticated flexible, in-mold and pressure sensitive labeling solutions for food, beverage and consumer product packaging customers. The company ascribes continued success over seven decades to a customized innovation process, which involves strategic evaluation and investment in emerging technologies, such as smart packaging and advanced variable data digital printing. The company offers digital, flexographic, offset and rotogravure production capabilities.
“Our company strategy is to continue to support our large brand clients, while at the same time developing our success with many smaller brands. This means investing in new technologies – such as Tilia Labs’ – and expanding capabilities that make our culture of innovation possible,” concludes Jackie Kuehlmann, Director of Marketing at Inland.
Inland Packaging is a leading supplier of sophisticated flexible, in-mold and pressure sensitive labeling solutions for food, beverage and consumer product packaging customers.