Reducing costs and driving profitability

-with Heidelberg Prinect press reporting solutions

In today’s competitive print environment, knowing what your costs are and how to optimize the use of your equipment has become essential in establishing sustainable business practices and ensuring the long term success of the company. With Heidelberg’s press reporting technology, print managers can now decipher exactly what each print job costs to produce, in materials and in time. Being able to access this kind of detailed information enables companies to streamline productivity, maximize profits, reduce waste and deliver an enhanced service to customers.

Under their Prinect brand, Heidelberg has developed a range of reporting options that utilizes existing operational data to deliver a complete picture on productivity and performance of existing equipment. There are three primary reporting options available to customers who operate Heidelberg Prinect-enabled press models: Prinect Performance Benchmarking (mid-2010 onwards), Prinect Press Reporting (2007 onwards), and Prinect Analyze Point (2007 onwards).

Prinect Performance Benchmarking

Heidelberg’s Prinect Performance Benchmarking has been awarded the prestigious 2012 InterTech Technology Award presented by Printing Industries of America. This global benchmarking service is complimentary (Prinect Performance Benchmarking – access to the full range of functions is available free for the first year – thereafter reports are limited to your presses) and enables customers to compare their Speedmaster presses online against other companies who are using the same or similar presses. Access is via a VPN (using a certified banking-level security protocol) to the Prinect Online Portal where all customer data remain anonymous, the only identification being the country in which the press is operating.

Prinect Performance Benchmarking enables customers to assess their press against others to ascertain whether their presses are optimally utilized by using the worldwide manufacturing standard key performance indicator OEE (Overall Equipment Effectiveness). All reports offer the monthly average data for the press as well as benchmarking with the best in class and the peer-group average. “Through Prinect Performance Benchmarking customers can gain a global view and compare how their press is performing against their peers,” says Jochen Bender (Prinect process consultant). “With this online service customers can look at comparative presses to gauge their performance in a commercial context. These are real figures from operating print companies. Being able to access this kind of information is invaluable particularly in today’s highly competitive trading environment. With this service customers can also look at other types of presses, such as perfector presses, to determine if this technology is more productive than what they are currently using.”

“This is international benchmarking and I believe it is a fantastic service that we can offer, in part, free to our customers. All you need is an internet connection and you can access information that could make a significant difference to our operation and productivity levels,” Bender continues.

Prinect Press Reporting

This second reporting function forms part of the Heidelberg press option, Prinect Instant Gate, and enables production managers to generate a monthly report on each press that details the productivity and quality of up to 100 individual jobs. “In competitive mature print markets like Australia around 95 percent of our customers are using Prinect Press Reporting which is seen as an essential part of doing business,” says Bender, adding, “These reports allow management to look at each press and determine how productive each operator is, what the quality control is like and where improvements can be made.”

Prinect Analyze Point

An option of the Prinect Pressroom Manager software package, Prinect Analyze Point enables the print company manager to conduct deep analysis of the entire print workflow including historical comparisons and job-by-job analysis. Prinect Analyze Point evaluates all machine messages and manual shop floor data (including postpress equipment) and presents them in easy-to-read diagrams. “With Prinect Analyze Point you can access a wide range of data and conduct more detailed comparisons on each of the presses and postpress devices to see where the gaps are and determine a course of action,” conveys Bender.

“The technology that drives our equipment enables operators to gain a very clear picture on how productive and how profitable each job can be. These Prinect reporting tools draw on existing production data that has already been entered as part of the production workflow, making analysis accurate and easy and removing the need for anyone to spend time re-entering information – it’s already there,” he continues, adding that with today’s tight margins there is no room for guesswork. “I recently heard a printer telling a story about how productive his shop was. Before he had done any analysis he believed they were producing at a rate that turned out to be five times faster than what they were actually achieving. This is where anecdotal evidence can be very dangerous and why knowledge is power.”

“Smart operators understand the value of data analysis. In today’s marketplace where runs are getting shorter, costs are increasing and competing media continues to drive down the price of print, it is even more essential to know exactly what your operational costs are. And with the smart technology behind our equipment the data is offered ready to collect and analyze literally at the touch of a button.” While many companies employ video surveillance to monitor productivity, Bender says that this is only a part measure. “This kind of observational management will tell you if an operator looks busy, but it won’t give you any detail on how productive the operator has been or how efficiently the press is running,” he adds further.

In conclusion, Bender conveys, “The Prinect reporting solutions provide independent and unbiased reports and are easily accessible – all you need is a computer and an internet connection. And because they incorporate a high level of graphics they are very easy to read. Heidelberg is happy to help our customers interpret their reports and make recommendations, but our experience shows the reports are easy to use and make life easier, not more complicated. Once customers realize the value of these reports, they do wonder as why they didn’t make the decision earlier.”

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