A Mistake Was Made – Kill the Printer!
The question of giving a supplier the boot comes up from time-to-time. Before doing something rash, like firing a previously reliable printer, you should ask yourself some important questions:
1. How important are they to the success of your business? Would your business really be better off without them?
2. What is the history of the vendor? Have they always had problems or is the current difficulty an anomaly?
3. Could changing vendors negatively impact any immediate or ongoing projects?
4. Can it, whatever is causing your upset, be worked out? Maybe instead of drawing out the axe would you benefit from a non-threatening heart-to-heart? Have you asked the printer to honestly share their side of the story? Are you willing to listen to it?
5. Are you being fair? Think about it, does your company supply your customers with a product or service? How would you like it if your customers treated you in the same way you are about to treat the printer?
6. Is there more to be learned by watching the pot more closely than tipping it over?
7. Have you considered that the fault may belong more to you, or your employees, than to the printer? Remember, your employees have everything to gain by shifting blame to the printer.
8. Is the problem one of substance or style? In other words, does the job get done right, and on-time even if done in a different manner than you would do it?
9. Were there unfortunate circumstances beyond the printer’s control, such as paper delivery issues, or equipment failures?
As we all know around here, preflighting is one of the pillars of success in a print workflow. How on earth does a designer, marketing department or print-buyer expect to understand the technical ins-and-outs of their often complicated, yet extremely expensive documents, if they do not administer print quality control or preflight? Preflight, coupled with communication and a good proofing process will lead to a successful virtual printer download output and final printed piece. Furthermore, I know many creative graphic designers who cover themselves with their preflight report as a form of “evidence” to be emailed to the printer if unexpected results appear.
Wink, wink: Markzware‘s FlightCheck can preflight 50+ document types, such as PDF, Adobe InDesign file format, Illustrator page layout program, QuarkXPress projects and numerous image types like print EPS, TIF, JPG and more. You can print, save as and email detailed reports on the preflight status of virtually any of your print documents.
A comment about this article was made on the Linkedin Group from PrintPlanet:
Points 7 & 8 hit the nail on the head. I had a customer that I
turned 75,000 to 225,000 full color, 4/4 that had a difficult fold
in two working days…There were 4 locations involved and
everyone was very happy…except one individual who thought
a “print broker” could perform better. My pricing was even
better…but I did not even get a chance to bat..This also is a
family run operation with husbands/wives…the only thing
that I didn’t offer at the time was ordering directly through the
web to my secure site which was not a big problem…The
customer is also going to be franchising through a family
member which is just out of college. My service, quality,
was great and my pricing was fair…I guess, even though
I had a great relationship with almost all of the owners, one
partner can “pull the rug out from underneath you”….
Inkit Printing & Consulting LLC
By Roger Weldon Assistant Director-Eastern,Central ,Southwest Wisconsin at BNI
Preflight to save the printer and print paper