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Survey Helps In-plant Justify Digital Press

After detailed customer surveying, University of Nebraska Medical Center Printing Services discovered it needed a digital press. It added one, and now business is booming.

January 2010 By Bob Neubauer
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When the University of Nebraska Medical Center (UNMC) asked staff and students to rate the service they were getting from university departments in 2008, the results were enlightening. Both faculty and students complained about the level of service being offered in all business services and financial departments. That included UNMC's 21-employee Printing Services department.

Though this information was useful, it was not enough for Manager Lori Fuller. She wanted more specific data about what customers needed from the in-plant and how her staff could provide better service. After all, the in-plant had a lot of competition in Omaha.

Though the in-plant had already been surveying customers via phone and e-mail, customers weren't always candid, and the surveying process was not convenient for them.

"We couldn't get the detail that we wanted," Fuller says.

So when she learned that her MIS vendor, Enterprise Print Management Solutions (EPMS), was rolling out a surveying module called CustomerAlert, in partnership with Survey Advantage, she jumped at the opportunity to use it. She was able to select jobs, e-mail personalized surveys after they were completed and track responses back to specific job orders. The detailed information she received revealed that the in-plant was losing a large amount of four-color work due to its lack of a four-color digital press. So to capture that business, the in-plant used survey data to justify the purchase of a new Presstek 34DI direct imaging offset press.

"The press has exceeded our expectations, and our surveys have already shown a positive response to the changes," remarks Fuller.

Complicated Installation

The 34DI was installed in late July—a process that presented its own challenges, since the press would not fit through the door.

"So we literally had to go outside and lift it on one of those big cranes up through the second story window," she says.

The in-plant had also investigated the Xerox iGen3 and an HP Indigo digital press, but found the quality level and price of the Presstek 34DI to be better.

"The registration is dead on, on the DI press," Fuller says. This is important for the brochures, newsletters, invitations and other products the shop produces on the press.

Three employees were trained to run the press, including Kevin Gamble from the Copy Center Operation, who had no previous offset experience. Despite that, he says the transition was easy. He notes that running the DI is similar in some ways to running the shop's Xerox 8000. He says that some jobs previously run on the 8000, like postcards and certain newsletters, have been switched to the 34DI.



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