Technology has always been a big part of the printing industry. Every time there’s been a major advancement in capabilities, technology played a central role. A trend that we see more of today is how the leaders optimize technology to run the business. This enables them to widen the gap between themselves, and everyone else. It is increasingly difficult to operate a plant in analog mode when you have increasingly complex work with many moving parts, and client delivery expectations that continue to be demanding.
There was always a saying that, “Hey, we got it out on time, didn’t we?” Yes, but if you saw how the sausage, I mean printing was made, you might get queasy. Just because this is custom manufacturing doesn’t mean you need to reinvent the wheel each day. It also doesn’t mean that you need to spend countless hours on repetitive clerical tasks. These duplicative activities necessary to process and track the orders add no intrinsic value to the work.
One of your main responsibilities as a leader is resource allocation. Resources include time, money, and staff. Your results are driven by how well you deploy those resources to optimize your business and deliver a memorable customer experience. Many businesses have focused their automation efforts on how they produce the work, the leaders though, have also expanded this line of thinking for how they manage the orders from beginning to end.
You don’t understand, we’re different
Well before they begin to put ink or toner on substrates, the leaders have used technology in the form of CRMs that are integrated into their management information system. They leave no stones unturned in making sure they capture the business they deserve, and then some. CRMs have long been a difficult sell to printing companies. They claim to be different, don’t need them, and don’t have time to enter the information. That’s the interesting thing about leaders…they tend to do the things that the others say are too hard to do.
Take your company to the next level by applying the same level of automation and integration that you have in the plant to the carpeted areas of your business.
If you have questions or additional insight into this topic, please comment below or reach out to me directly.
Mike Philie can help validate what’s working and what may need to change in your business. Changing the trajectory of a business is difficult to do while simultaneously operating the core competencies. Mike provides strategy and insight to owners and CEOs in the Graphic Communications Industry by providing direct and realistic advice, not being afraid to voice the unpopular opinion and helping leaders navigate change through a common sense and practical approach. Learn more at www.philiegroup.com, LinkedIn or email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Originally published in Printing Impressions.