Buying a Digital Press (Now)? -- Waldman
It's a Changing World
The world will continue to change as the technology of digital presses evolves and prices drop. The same could be said about the technology of desktop printers. Also some printing will be lost as your customers buy desktop digital printers like the Phaser and start using them for short runs and distributed print. But you haven't broke the bank with your Phaser investment. Plus, even in this rapidly changing world, I think the Karat fills a niche for a commercial printer that will enable it to hang around long enough for you to more than get your money's worth.
I would not drop all this into my pressroom; it requires different thinking. Perhaps it belongs in prepress or a completely new department. In addition to a manufacturing plan, I would have a marketing plan with a sales strategy.
Plus I would have a complete solution for automatic processing of files and job specs—which starts with the customer and ends in shipping. The file and the job info have to be right and flow through with minimum intervention; otherwise the cost efficiencies of short runs are lost. There's no time for running around trying to achieve perfection on each job. Your system must have automated standards.
(Postscript: This was written the day prior to the attack on America. I know it is important to get back to business because that helps to maintain the strength of this great nation. However, my heart goes out to the people who were innocent victims of this atrocious deed. Like the skyline of New York, we will all be changed forever. I have given more thought to how much I love my country and how fortunate I am to live here. I do hope this is a wakeup call for the civilized world and that all nations pull together to make no corner safe for terrorists and murderers.)