Using an advanced highly automated and integrated workflow solution, featuring EFI™ Technique MIS software as its core, Belgium-based commercial print company Corelio Printing has achieved greater efficiencies to set itself above and beyond other publishing industry providers, with 85% of the company's multi-plant operation running hands-free.
Corelio Printing staff and customers benefit from this exceptional level of streamlined workflow integration as it allows staff to focus primarily on customer care instead of administrative or low-level production management tasks. The centrepiece of the workflow, EFI Technique software, schedules jobs with virtually no intervention across several plants running a variety of printing technologies.
The company, a division of Corelio Media, has also increased productivity while reducing costs because of the EFI Technique implementation and its integration to connect business management, prepress and production processes.
According to Corelio Printing CEO Jan Lynen, an influx of smaller publication runs in 30,000- to 50,000-quantity range created the need for faster turnaround. Without the EFI Technique installation, those jobs would have substantially increased the amount of labour needed to keep up with demand. "We produce from 12,000 to 20,000 plates per month," said Lynen, "but since implementing EFI Technique our customers' PDF files go straight to the platesetter with no staff involved.
"If a change comes in on a job," he added, "the software recalculates how many new plates have to be made and reassigns them to an available platesetter."
In the end, the successful EFI Technique implementation yielded a 10% savings in labour, according to Lynen. "Best of all," he added, "Customers love not having strict deadlines. Now they can upload files at their convenience 24 hours a day. All we need is a help desk for unusual orders. Technique gives our customers lots more flexibility when working with Corelio Printing."
Under its original ownership, Corelio Media printed the first issue of De Standaard, Belgium's largest-circulation newspaper, in 1918. Today the company's portfolio includes commercial printing, digital publishing and broadcast media, as well as newspaper publishing.
Much of Corelio Media's growth over the years is a result of a series of mergers and acquisitions from which it inherited additional printing facilities. In 2009, a reorganisation split the company's printing into Coldset Printing Partners for newspaper production and Corelio Printing for commercial applications including magazines and collateral materials. Housed in different facilities running heatset, coldset and sheetfed technology, Corelio Printing serves clients in Belgium, France and the Netherlands.
EFI Technique automates job scheduling in three plants
Lynen had several criteria when choosing workflow software to operate between the Corelio production facilities. "With the merger of several companies we had a mixture of processes and wanted to uniform production to save costs," said Lynen. "The software had to cover the operation of all of our plants and different technologies so JDF was very important."
EFI worked closely with Corelio Printing and its plate and prepress technology supplier, Agfa, to also establish a streamlined integration between Technique and the Agfa prepress workflow software Corelio uses.
Corelio Printing's next step working with EFI involves giving customers direct login access using EFI's proven Web-to-print technologies.
"EFI Technique has been a powerful MIS solution for customers around the world. Corelio Printing demonstrates how far a company in the publishing space can go with automation to reduce costs and improve customer relationships," said Paul Cripps, EFI's vice president of sales for the EMEA region. "We are honoured to be among its partners."