So Fritch and his colleagues set out to find a way to apply the “single keystroke” principle that had eluded them thus far: one button that would connect key processes and one button that would also connect key company functions.
They studied systems designed for the printing industry—and even some that weren’t. The challenge? To acquire technology that would work seamlessly as a unit over four locations, 20 presses and 1,200 people, and make the $10 million investment they had made in hardware work even harder.
“I knew that we would need something that could be configured rather than customized, satisfying our need, not only for modernization, but to accommodate individual customers and new products and processes coming down the pike,” adds Fritch. “We also wanted to achieve significant reductions in makeready waste.”
So, they selected PRISM’s QTMS iQ intelligent network production management system (SFDC) to supply company-wide, real-time data. PRISM introduces specifications for managing, aggregating, post-processing, multi-purposing and aggregating magazine, news, catalog, book and mainstream journal content. The system was installed on all of Walsworth’s presses and bindery equipment for data collection within all of the company’s production locations by the end of 2006.
“We benchmarked our pressroom during the month of April 2007 vs. April 2008, and measured our average makeready waste on-press. Since the QTMS implementation, we have reduced waste an average of 60 percent per press run. With 10,000+ jobs per year, this has resulted in a significant savings for us,” he reveals.
However, the lean manufacturing goals Walsworth had set for itself went beyond waste reduction. They wanted to acquire technology that could achieve more consistency and control across departments. In the end, Walsworth opted for PRISM-WIN. Now fully integrated, the WIN and QTMS iQ systems have begun to deliver important gains, impacting the entire spectrum of Walsworth’s administrative and production workflow, from estimating, order processing and manufacturing to distribution.