Bennett Graphics Takes Step Toward Full JDF Integration
KENNESAW, GA—March 11, 2010—The first U.S. implementation of Heidelberg’s Prinect interface with EFI’s Monarch print production and management solution from EFI recently went live at Bennett Graphics in Tucker, GA. The company is using the linkage to facilitate fast, accurate machine set-ups and harness real-time production data from its Heidelberg presses, based on the bidirectional exchange of JDF/JMF presets and job costing information between the company’s existing Prinergy workflow, Prinect Pressroom Manager and its Monarch MIS.
The implementation marks a milestone in the company’s progress toward full JDF integration from MIS to press and eventually to its postpress department. “We made the decision to begin our JDF implementation some time ago, and have been watching as the technology matured,” said Scott Carroll, Vice President Operations, Bennett Graphics. “For the present, the Heidelberg-EFI interface is helping us to reduce the makeready times and accurately record what is happening on our 5-color Speedmaster CD 102 press. Once we feel comfortable with the process, and with the quality of the data going out and coming in, we’ll tie in our JDF-compliant Stahlfolder and POLAR cutting system.”
Carroll views full JDF integration as nothing less than a business imperative, not only for Bennett Graphics, but also for the industry at large. “Within three to five years, it will be critical for printers to be able to adjust their prices to meet market pressure,” he said. “Without accurate costing, lean makereadies and lower waste, printers will be unable to respond to the growing demand for market costing and just-in-time inventory needs of their customers.”
Following order entry, JDF input from Bennett’s EFI Monarch system automatically creates a Prinect production job, assigns a workflow plan to that job, fills the job with administrative and production data useful to Bennett’s press systems, and queues up a properly configured job for the press. As production starts, the JMF server provides production status milestones to EFI Monarch and collects job costing data at job completion.
“Not only does the JDF set up the press, but while the press is running, it produces accurate, real-time data and sends it back to the MIS,” Carroll explained. “As a result, it is almost impossible for an operator to punch in the wrong job and get inaccurate data from job set-up and job return.” The ability to collect job costing data automatically represents a significant benefit for Bennett Graphics in terms of gaining new jobs and increasing the company’s return on investment by 10-15 percent, according to Carroll.
Now that the Prinect-EFI link is a working reality at Bennett Graphics, Carroll’s vision for the future of the company includes an ever more integral role for JDF as continues to mature in the print shop workflow. “We expect to be able to exact more and more data from it, and to use it in real time information systems for the shop floor,” he said. “There’ll be no more hunting that change order or customer alteration form because changes and quantities are updated automatically. That paper job ticket also will go away and be replaced by a fully interactive, touchscreen, job response terminal—all in real time. Even payroll will quickly become a part of the JDF world. Computers talking to computers with human supervision: that’s JDF.”
Coordinated Data Exchange Streamlines Production
The better the coordination of a company's interfaces, the more efficiently it operates. Prinect is a powerful, open system, facilitating the coordinated data exchange using a standardized JDF/JMF interface to industry software systems (MIS) or a CIP4/PPF interface to various prepress workflow systems. Prinect Pressroom Manager is the central management system for the pressroom, making it possible to react rapidly, directly and flexibly to changing requirements. Prinect Pressroom Manager communicates information intelligently so that print jobs are automatically available at the right press at the right time, substantially increasing productivity. Thanks to the efficient use of preset data, makeready times and waste at the press are significantly reduced.
“Bennett Graphics is in the vanguard of forward-thinking printers who understand the value of seamless JDF integration in implementing a lean business strategy,” said Ray Cassino, Director of CtP and Prinect Products for Heidelberg USA. “Having forged a working link between EFI’s JDF-certified Monarch MIS and Heidelberg’s Prinect Pressroom Manager, the company can make and execute the best possible commercial decisions based on accurate, real-time production data instead of guesswork.”
To learn more about Prinect, the comprehensive JDF based solution from Heidelberg go to www.getprinected.com. Heidelberg USA will be exhibiting at EFI Connect, in Las Vegas, NV, April 18-20, 2010 at Booth 110.