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Web-to-print Moves In-plant to Head of Class

Pivotal investments in Web-to-print software and digital color are making life easier for teachers at Blue Valley School District, and creating opportunities for the district's in-plant to add volume and expand services.

September 2012 By Erik Cagle
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When the mornings turn cool and the once-joyous smiles upon the faces of America's youth turn to frowns and scowls, there is one inescapable conclusion to be reached: school is back in session.

Yet, for the nation's hundreds of in-plant printers serving the educational sector, there is no summer respite to enjoy. June through August is often a heavy period of work, wrapping up the previously completed school year and preparing the multitude of jobs in anticipation of the next educational campaign.

Don't tell the Blue Valley School District of Overland Park, Kan., that the digital age is cutting into the need for hard copy documents. Its Printing Services operation has been humming away all summer, delivering on as many as 40,000 job orders to satisfy about 3,100 teachers at 35 schools. This district in the state's second-largest city (trailing only Wichita) serves more than 21,000 students.

Though "flat" may be one of the first words that come to mind when people think of Kansas (not true; it doesn't even rank among the 10 flattest in the United States), order volume has been anything but for Printing Services in recent years. It has billowed from 51,000 jobs in 2009-2010 to more than 92,000 for the 2011-2012 school year.

Truth be known, Printing Services only has itself to blame for the uptick in orders. The addition of a Xerox iGen3 digital press and a critical suite of software from Rochester Software Associates—including the WebCRD Web-to-print ordering tool and QDirect.SCAN scan-to-print software—have opened the floodgates with more efficient tools for its staff clientele to get the ball rolling on required classroom materials.

Still, you won't hear Jason Gillam, assistant director of business operations for Blue Valley, or Printing Services Coordinator Paul Ackerman complaining. While the in-plant averaged 640 orders a day in the first week of classes for the 2012-2013 term (with a ­one-day record of 798 orders), the eight-­employee shop has witnessed the elimination of peaks and valleys in its own homework assignments.

Relying on Overachievers

Teachers, by their nature, have come to expect more and more from their overachieving "students" at Printing Services. RSA's Autoflow automation is the crib sheet, enabling the shop to reach a staggering 68 percent for next-day delivery during the 2011-2012 school year, a massive 26 percent spike in just two years.

Blue Valley School District
Overland Park, Kansas
  • 8 employees
  • 92,000+ jobs per year
Key Equipment:
  • Rochester Software Associates WebCRD and QDirect.SCAN software
  • Two Xerox Nuvera 144s
  • Xerox 4127
  • Xerox 4112
  • Xerox iGen3
  • Xerox DocuColor 242
  • Two Ryobi two-color presses
  • Duplo System 5000 collator/bookletmaker
  • Duplo DB-280 perfect binder
  • Watkiss square-back spine former
  • JBI AlphaDoc paper punch
  • GBC Digicoil inserter
  • Saber 42˝ programmable ­guillotine cutter
  • MBO paper folder with right angle attachment, perf and score wheels
  • Challenge three-hole drill
  • Other comb and tape binders
 
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