In conversations with our customers, I often receive questions like “How can we lower our manufacturing cost?” or “Can you help us increase our performance?” With print production is under cost savings pressure these days, Owners, Production Managers or VP’s of Operations are looking to squeeze out every dollar possible in order to be price competitive.

The answers to these questions start with looking at your data. One of our customers printed a t-shirt with the imprint “Data is the New Oil”. This is right on with every facet of the world being fueled and pushed forward by the data we transmit and receive on a daily basis. Heidelberg has developed programs that convert log file data coming from our machines into production metrics.

I can then extract this unbiased data coming from a customer’s press to answer their questions. I explain the situation merely looking at the production data and making comparisons to state of the art key performance indicator values that were acquired from the many machines running in the market place. This benchmarking very quickly answers the question, where the problems are.

It could be that makeready times are too long or an excessive amount of waste sheets are created before or during production. Sometimes press speeds are not maximized or there is just too much waiting time between jobs because of inefficient workflow processes. There is no end of drilling deeper into the data and getting to the answers as specific as the questions might be.

Typically, the owners and production staff are surprised about the accuracy of the data and being able to pinpoint exactly what is wrong and what the remedies are.

Once it is clear, effective measures can be defined to fix the situation. In some cases, a lack of a “dialed-in” color management causes unnecessary waste or in other cases, the machine is not properly repaired and maintained, which can lead to breakdown times or substandard printing speeds.

All in all, the performance loss (we measure this in Overall Equipment Effectiveness) is often times rather large. Every little thing adds up and in total, the financial impact of understanding your performance data can mean much higher profit margins for you.

To find out more about Data Driven Services from Heidelberg and how they can help you to operate at higher efficiencies and lower cost, contact your Heidelberg representative or fill out the form below.

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Rebecca Melville
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