It’s that time of year again! The time of year when many people have made some form of goal or resolution to take into the new year. Maybe you’ve decided to exercise more, try a new diet or quit smoking, but what about your print shop? Just like with your personal resolutions, now is a great time to propose setting a few goals for your business.

Consider the following tips for setting and maintaining these 3 objectives for your plant:

Growing your Business

Growth doesn’t just happen. You need a clear vision backed with commitment and effort in order to focus your resources towards achieving growth. How should you start? First, take the time to evaluate what’s currently happening with your business, customers and competition. The beginning of the year is a great time to do this, but you will want to reevaluate regularly to ensure your shop is operating at its full potential. Having a Management Information System (MIS) is a great way to make your strategic planning and decision-making more efficient and productive. If you don’t have a MIS system, consider trying a demonstration for Prinect Business Manager. If you are interested in Prinect 2016, talk with your Heidelberg representative about setting up a webinar.

Fix any problems

Were your operators complaining about things being slow and unreliable in 2015? If so, there is a good chance something could be wrong. Establish a routine system maintenance schedule and make sure you take care of the following things:

  • Regularly apply critical system updates from the manufacturer of your operating systems/applications
  • Use the Prinect Maintenance Center to keep your Prinect workflow up-to-date
  • Perform the recommended administration tasks like defrag, ScanDisk, Anti-Virus Scans, etc.
  • Review the hardware updates for firmware and drivers from Dell for your PowerEdge servers and Precision/OptiPlex workstations.

Moving forward, maintain a log to track the day, time, computer, operator and a description of the problem. This will establish a history showing the frequency and duration of each problem to help identify any patterns.  Be sure to call the Help Desk when you need assistance – when you let problems linger, they tend to get worse and frustrate your employees.

Make those upgrades you have been putting off

If you are running “end-of-life” products in your production environment, make a conscious effort to migrate off of these environments. This includes MS Windows XP, which ended on April 8, 2014, MS Windows Server 2003, which ended July 14, 2015 and other versions of Microsoft Internet Explorer prior to Version 11, which ended January 12, 2016. By not upgrading, you could risk not having new security fixes released by Microsoft, compatibility with newer hardware, software and technology may no longer be available and support resources will begin to dwindle.

Invest in your Operators

If you experienced some operator turnover in 2015 (or even if you haven’t), consider getting some product training for your operators. Without the proper training, it’s likely that you are not operating at your full potential and you may not even realize it. Training will help to make sure you are getting the most out of your production system and have the most up-to-date information on product updates and features. By participating in training, you will also show your operators that they are a key component of your business by investing in them and the future of your business.

Whether you are looking to grow your business or invest in training, this year is the perfect year to get focused, stay committed and make the proper adjustments to ensure you are optimizing your production.

 

Eugene O’Brien
Senior Technical Support Analyst