When doing this reevaluation of manning requirements, managers should also think in terms of skill requirements, not just numbers, the consultant asserts. Running to the numbers, auto plate changers and presetting is reducing the press expertise required, at least to an extent, he believes. “You can have one person seeing to the expert functions on multiple presses.”
Similar to Lamparter, Holliday says he wants to see real-world results before passing judgment on four or more color auto-transfer capabilities. With black-only changes, a shop may only through away 50 signatures—or even just 10 if they’re really good—in making the changeover, he explains.
“With four-color work, you have to get back up to color at high speed. I want to see how fast operators can get the color acceptable again because they are running waste at a very high rate,” the consultant observes.
As a final thought, he says switching to metal-back blankets is a low-tech option that’s getting overlooked. Making the change quiets down and smooths out a press, he asserts.