School Datebooks Meets Nearly 18 Percent Volume Increase with Océ Systems
TRUMBULL, CT—Dec. 9, 2010—Océ, an international leader in digital document management and delivery, announced that an involved, proactive Océ service team and an Océ VarioStream 8650 production printer have helped School Datebooks, Inc. (www.schooldatebooks.com) increase output almost 18 percent over the previous year—and reduced costs by running more work using economical digital workflow instead of offset.
For over 25 years, School Datebooks has served customers ranging from elementary schools to colleges. The company’s customized planning calendars are their “bread and butter” product. School Datebooks was the first to do these full-blown custom datebooks with school-specific events, rules and other information, while most competitors still do generic products. The school year calendars display as two week spreads, in addition to other content such as rules and regulations, dress codes, maps, or information geared to special groups like freshman classes or athletes.
“The book market is a priority for Océ, and we’ve developed a complete portfolio of digital printing and workflow solutions for the widest range of publishing opportunities. Our customers can quickly transform book production to a higher level of performance and efficiency. For School Datebooks, the Océ VarioStream solution lets them take advantage of digital production over offset. For other customers, the Océ JetStream family, Océ CS 10000 production power, or the Océ VarioPrint 6000 Ultra cutsheet line might be the best fit, along with Océ PRISMA workflow software for book automation. And all are backed by our outstanding service teams,” said Francis McMahon, Vice President, Marketing, Océ North America, Production Printing Systems.
Huge Volume Increase Over Previous Years
The School Datebooks annual production schedule hinges on a very tight window of opportunity. There is a ten-week turn time from getting each school’s information, doing layout and design, proofing, and then printing. “During our core eight weeks, we averaged over four million impressions per week, with a maximum week of almost five million. These are numbers that I would not have assumed even in a best case scenario,” said Vice President of Production, Jeff Bapst.
“As productive as we were last year, this year we saw a substantial improvement. From April through August, we eclipsed 50 million impressions (25 million feet of paper) on our engines. This was nearly an 18 percent improvement over the same period last year, and a 68 percent improvement over 2008, when the books were outsourced,” said Bapst. The new Océ machine was a huge part of a successful strategy to bring the work in house.
Océ Service Makes Critical Difference in Meeting Goals
“A lot of hard work and improved efficiencies went into this increase, but the level of Océ service was a huge factor in this success. Océ brought a sense of urgency and accountability that we don’t normally see from a service team. They considered themselves part of our team, which is rare from a services perspective, and they were concerned with our numbers, goals and satisfaction throughout the season. They understood we had to keep running and used discretion to schedule maintenance and downtime,” Bapst said. “The overall yearly success of School Datebooks relies heavily on the performance of this production operation. The level of Océ service and response that we receive over this period is crucial to that success.”
Taking Every Advantage of Digital Printing
The tight opportunity window has more to do with capturing a cost advantage than compressing production schedules. Jobs that run on the Océ equipment are the most efficient and profitable, so the company wants to put as much work as possible on the digital system.
“We have a window to get as much off this machine as we can,” said Bapst. “We try to run 24/7 until mid-August, and whatever doesn’t get on the digital machine is a missed opportunity, because we pay more for what we run on offset. So if we miss an opportunity for printing on the Océ machine, there’s no making it up. We want to operate our Océ VarioStream 8650 printer a minimum of 24/6 and usually aim for 24/7.”
Economics Drive Jobs from Offset to Digital
The average datebook runs 144 to 160 pages, with some as small as 48, and others as big as 264 pages. The polyethylene-covered books are typically finished with double wire roll binding. “Until we had Océ, everything mostly printed offset. With printing schedules and making plates, it’s hard to pick up much time at that point, and we had to allow two weeks to print. Now with Océ in the mix, we can print a job as soon as it is ready and have it to bindery the next day,” Bapst explained.
“Our average run on the Océ VarioStream printer is about 750 units per job, and when you look at all the expenses, for digital compared to offset, the pricing difference is significant. The Océ VarioStream 8650 printer, in conjunction with its reliable service staff, have enabled School Datebooks to become more competitive from a pricing perspective,” said Bapst.
Océ is one of the leading providers of document management and printing for professionals. The Océ offering includes office printing and copying systems, high speed digital production printers and wide format printing systems for both technical documentation and color display graphics. Océ is also a foremost supplier of document management outsourcing. Many of the Fortune Global 500 companies and leading commercial printers are Océ customers. The company was founded in 1877. With headquarters in The Netherlands Océ is active in over 100 countries and employs some 22,000 people worldwide. Total revenues in 2009 amounted to €2.6 billion. Océ is listed on Euronext in Amsterdam. For more information, visit www.oce.com.
Océ North America is headquartered in Trumbull, CT, with additional business units in Chicago, IL and Boca Raton, FL. North America represents over 37 percent of Océ’s worldwide revenues, and employment is over 9,000. For more information about Océ North America, visit www.oceusa.com. Outside the U.S., consult http://global.oce.com.
Océ and Canon: Stronger together
In 2010, Océ joined the Canon Group of companies with headquarters in Tokyo, Japan, to create the global leader in the printing industry. Canon develops, manufactures and markets a growing line-up of copying machines, printers, cameras, optical and other products that meet a diverse range of customer needs. Canon employs approximately 170,000 people worldwide. Global revenues in 2009 were $35 billion. For more information, visit http://www.canon.com.
“Océ VarioPrint,” “Océ PRISMA,” “Océ JetStream,” “Océ VarioStream,” "Océ” and the Océ logo are registered trademarks of Océ-Technologies B.V. All product and company names are trademarks or registered trademarks, are the property of their owners, and are respectfully acknowledged.
Source: Company press release.