CIM In Action -- Awaiting the Big Payoff
Dean Fairley, executive vice president with JohnsByrne Co. of Niles, IL, notes that his company has been on the CIP3/PPF come JDF train for two years and believes a lot of the CIM criticism is unwarranted and unfair.
"If you think about it, you're looking at a two-year-old child," he says. "As it continues to develop and mature, we see continual enhancements, integration and improvement at each step along the way.
"We obviously wish the technology providers were moving a little faster, but they're not. In the meantime, you utilize everything you can do today," Fairley says.
There's more to it than just the capabilities of new equipment, he adds. "You can't rebuild a printing facility overnight. Our operation is integrated really well. As we continue to make upgrades in equipment and infrastructure, we're seeing those benefits being further enhanced from each of the manufacturers."
The Right Direction
JohnsByrne—which utilizes JDF and CIP3 technology—is generating what Fairley terms "bi-directional" information. Jobs set up in its MIS system are posting into its Creo Prinergy workflow. Prinergy kicks back information such as job tracking, material usage and alteration information.
On the press side, it is not a completely bilateral connection, Fairley says. Information currently is being sent to the press, including ink key profiling, job specifications, gross and net counts, job ticket information and paper size. Two new presses are being targeted that will incorporate technology from Komori and EFI.
"One of the problems we're having is that we're waiting on our vendors to release new software for our MIS system that will be JDF-compliant based on the current ICS specs," notes Tim Uchwat, vice president of finance for JohnsByrne. "We're pushing toward that one level at a time."
Uchwat believes vendors are still grappling with the implementation of ICS (Interoperability Conformance Specifications), which all vendors should be using in their compliance with JDF. Once the wheel-spinning ends, he says, progress can be made.