November 8, 2018 | Amanda Flower

A Converter’s Checklist to Short Run Efficiency

Having the ability to produce labels proficiently and profitably is the core business model for most converters. While there are many avenues with which that success can be achieved, the route taken can vary greatly when considering a printer’s book of business.

When considering the growing movement of low volume orders by brands, printers can often find themselves conflicted when it comes to short and micro run jobs. Whether it’s the excess waste that comes with printing shorter jobs on flexo or the minimal net gains (or sometimes even loss) that come with outsourcing smaller runs, converters are unsure of how to produce these jobs while still competing in longer, more lucrative runs or simply how to produce these jobs at a profit. However, as the industry shifts to runs under 10,000 feet, it’s imperative for converters to have the appropriate pressroom configuration to avoid leaving money on the table.

Due to its nature, all converters are going to have to answer to loyal customers that require short run work. Are you prepared to capitalize on those requests? Here are a few items to check off of your list to ensure pressroom optimization of micro and short jobs:

Open capacity

If you want to compete in the short run game, you need excess capacity. Your operation should to have the right amount of equipment to ensure that high output flexo presses are being appropriately utilized, designating another asset for the smaller jobs.

Shorter delivery times

Having the ability to say “yes” (and the equipment to support your commitment) to quick turnaround times is a must to stay competitive in the world of micro and short run work. Digital hybrid printing provides rapid turnaround, going from order to finished roll in under four hours.

Inline converting and finishing

To adhere to customer application expectations and the aforementioned trend of “just-in-time” printing, having the ability to print and convert ready-to-ship labels is a huge value add for production.

Optimal book of business

SKU proliferation, seasonal goods and personalization are all driving factors behind short run work and each can require applications that may not be suited for a traditional flexo full-production presses. To capitalize on short and mirco run length business, it’s imperative have a digital hybrid production unit to support your endeavors.

Total solutions partnership

Increased capacity and job throughput is a key element of business growth, but pressroom optimization goes beyond that. Having the right industry partners to ensure that your press is properly maintained and you have the best supplies on hand when you need them is just as important as the press itself.

The time for digital is now

By leveraging the advantages of digital with the proven capabilities of flexo in a single pass, converters can benefit from 35% more work, 18% cost reduction in overtime, material waste, and consumables, and 27% are able to deliver to their customers in 24 hours.

Demands for shorter run lengths and faster lead times aren’t slowing down anytime soon. The need for an affordable solution to meet these demands continues to grow. Mark Andy Digital Pro gives you the opportunity to set your business apart from the competition. Click here to learn more about how the entry-level digital machine can improve your bottom line.