Open House PolicyDecember 1998
University of California, Berkeley
University of California-Berkeley Printing Services has a long and distinguished history as the main provider of printed materials for the school. According to George Craig, director of printing services, the university created its first print shop in 1874 in the basement of an early administration building.
Up until the 1950s the printing department was combined with the publishing division. When the printing needs of the school became too great, a separate department was born.
"It was recognized as an early requirement and has grown since," Craig says of the printing department.
Since those days back in the basement, the printing services department has grown into a 35,000-square-foot main printing plant on the Berkeley campus, plus 30,000 square feet of warehouse space. There also also two 20,000-square-foot library binderies, in Oakland and Los Angeles, which serve the university library system's bookbinding needs.
Printing Services accommodates the printing needs of some 140,000 University of California students attending nine campuses throughout the state. Craig's responsibilities extend beyond just printing, though. He recently absorbed all bulk mail duties and is awaiting a decision on whether he will get the rest of the mail responsibilities.
Also new to Printing Services are an envelope press and an ink-jet addressing machine. This has brought some outsourced work back in-house.
The in-plant's recent growth, Craig says, can be credited to a large-scale marketing plan.
"We have a marketing plan that keeps us in touch with customers, looks at outsourcing, and looks at what we can do in-house," says Craig. "We have to be cost competitive. There is no mandate for our services. I would like to add more staff but we restrain ourselves," Craig notes.
One way that Craig markets his in-plant is by holding open houses for his customers and other members of the campus community.
"It's a great way to have customers [come] into the shop and see the new equipment," Craig says. It also keeps them up to date on new technology. Plus, he hints, it never hurts to let the bosses see your customers smiling when they see what your in-plant can do. Craig plans to hold the next open house in the spring.
When it comes time to purchase new equipment, Craig does not have to look long and hard for the financing. Everything is purchased from money in a reserve fund set aside for Printing Services. There is no budget from the university for the in-plant; it is a fully self supporting operation.