Workflows That Work Wonders

Designed with Scitex users in mind, yet applicable to other prepress workflows, Shira’s Jet Stream enables users to enhance their DTP and CEPS workflows while preserving previous investments in high-end image processing equipment. Jet Stream Plus includes all components of the Shira Jet Stream process, plus proofing and layout.

“What we see from a lot of customers now is the importance of organizing the entire process, and a strong focus on organizing content,” reports Tim Bosworth, product manager for DataFlow at Cascade. “Organizing the process and coming up with sophisticated software systems and databases capable of managing a tremendous volume of digital content—-that is the role of the workflow provider.”

Directing Workflows
R.R. Donnelley formed an automated, in-house prepress installation at NM Direct that includes DataFlow, a workflow management system from Cascade Systems. DataFlow tracks all the jobs behind the creation of 70 catalogs a year, a total of 4,000 pages, filled with fonts, text and images.

The workflow manager also keeps an ongoing record of all the activity—images scanned, proofs produced—on which R.R. Donnelley bases its billing for the NM Direct work. DataFlow automatically creates a job ticket for every piece of the catalog as the catalog is being produced. How? The system interfaces with the creative department, so that, as graphics are produced, copy is written and pages put out, the status can be checked by any member of the production team at any time.

Lee Webster, prepress product manager in the Merchandise Media Group at R.R. Donnelley, reports the NM Direct prepress operation no longer has to contend with manual tracking of images and text files, or with staying on top of the number of proofs a job required.

“I get the information I need to analyze the production process of any particular job—I can see how many proofs were made on any page sent from any workstation at any time,” he explains. “I can take a complete digital tour of the workflow process—that has to be one of the coolest parts of the system.”

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