“We’re only as good as our people,” Pontillo continues. “Ideas come from them, and they make the technology work. Treating them right is important to our ongoing success.”
On the technology side, he sees on-demand digital printing technology making its way into the web offset arena, but perhaps more so for versioning than producing entire products.
Art Salayda is completing his term as WOA vice chairman and is in line to move up to chairman. He is also president of Evergreen Publishing and Printing in Bellmawr, NJ, and deferred to his vice president of sales and marketing, John Dreisbach, for the company’s market outlook. Evergreen targets its heatset and cold web printing services to community newspapers, as well as trade and business publishers.
Among the trends Dreisbach sees:
* a major increase in the use of color in community newspapers;
* daily newspapers doing custom publishing to capture or hold onto ad dollars from companies that are partial to coated paper; and
* some coldset web publications converting to heatset printing, either in part or in whole, to stay competitive or gain an edge by offering added value to advertisers.
In today’s competitive pricing environment, efficiency is critical, Dreisbach agrees. “Margins are relatively small, so we need the most efficient, effective and consistent operating equipment and processes possible.”
“We continue to live in a ‘do more with less’ world,” Dreisbach continues. “This challenge is as much about the competition between various industry companies to secure good people. Management’s job is to coach a group of aggressive thinkers; letting people know that you value their ability and contribution.
“You can acquire technology and skilled workers, but good attitudes can’t be purchased. They must be grown, shaped and maintained through good management, which includes leading by example,” he adds.
Doing more with less can be extended to presses, but the decision to retrofit an existing machine rather than buy new can get complicated, according to Dreisbach.