Printed in the USA or Outsourcing – Preflight

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Here is an interesting one to ponder, from someone in our industry and from the United States who has been asking questions about this recent economic down-turn. The blogger over at AdTex Advertising wrote a long post about his frustrations in the manufacturing sector in America and in particular printing for print advertising, as they are of course very familiar with print coming from the printing trade. He noted:

The frustration with this situation recently hit the fan with my print partner, Mike. I believe the final straw was flipping to the backside of an American Automobile Manufacturer’s car brochure where he discovered “Printed in South Korea” in the small print. Mike works for a great, family-owned, 121-year old Visual Communications (read ‘printing’) company based in the same state as the ‘Big Three’ auto manufacturers.

It is kind of ironic, one has to admit. What will we outsource next, a printing job to print our United States dollar?  The challenge to printers is to sell what the clients want to purchase, not what the printers have to sell. New ideas need to continue, to develop ideas into a migration from producing a product (printing) to print management.

When outsourcing to other countries you have to consider the language barrier. The language in which you have to give directions and orders is different. The inks and papers available aren’t the same. The solvents and chemicals are different and could be harmful to children that eat or chew printed things. Obviously the labor is cheap and mostly semi-skilled. The equipment is sometimes the castoffs from America, refurbished if possible.

Then, when your job is printed you get to decide how to get it back to the States. Do you ship it by air (which is extremely expensive)? Do you print five times what you need, place it in a shipping container on a shipdeck and wait three months to receive it? (After which, you need to open the container and sort to find the products that are not water damaged, and the ones that actually have the color you signed off on at proof?) But, Hey, every big business is shipping jobs overseas, why not you?

Outsourcing would have its limit, you would think… Whether you outsource printing or not, be sure that Markzware‘s FlightCheck is used to preflight files for print quality control. Markzware’s preflighting technology cuts time and money. When you can make any changes, then have the print job on press and ready to go, it just shows the cost cutting involved.

FlightCheck software is your total prepress application used to manage print quality. This preflight solution can check native files and Acrobat PDF. It is backed by a preflight patent (United States Patent #5,963,641). FlightCheck preflight is the essential preflight tool for print shops, creative professionals, prepress departments, customer service reps and graphic designers in the digital printing and publishing industries. FlightCheck helps users to prepare print in PDF and non-PDF file types for commercial printing.

Printed in the USA or Outsourcing – Preflight

Title: Printed in the USA or Outsourcing – Preflight
Published on: April 23, 2009
David Dilling

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