Wednesday, November 23, 2011

Service & Our Continuous Improvements

At the Northwest Group (Copytronix, QBSI and Pinnell) we are not just a copier company, we strive to provide the very best solutions and service in the marketplace.  This is not a stagnant operation, in fact, we continuously look for new ways to improve our processes both internal and external so that our service is seen as superior and our customers are satisfied.

One significant change we have made in 2011 is our use of BEI Services. Business Equipment Information Services is a tiered approach to managing service results.

This is how it works:

BEI provides us with a worldwide database of equipment performance. We can quickly compare our equipment performance to national standards and take the guess work out of whether or not the equipment is performing as expected, and if not, some insight as to why.

It shows us the most and least effective volume bands for each individual model. We can also instantly compare our results in some critical areas such as parts and labor cost, copies between visits, time between failures and most importantly our ability to fix it the first time, without having to order parts or be called back for any reason before a certain criteria of copies and time make it a quality service call.

Technician territories are set based on data from BEI which builds effective territories based on training, travel, and technical efficiency. It is workload distribution that gives us the best chance of having the correct technician responding to the call with the correct parts to get it fixed the first time.

Along with benchmarking and building effective territories, we can then offer an incentive program to our technicians that rewards doing a total service call, having the correct parts to fix it the first time and making the equipment run as long as possible between service calls.
By benchmarking results, running efficient territories and using parts wisely, we are becoming a better service organization for our customers. That is the ultimate goal.

- Ed: Service Manager

Friday, November 18, 2011

Increase Print Volume to Your Print Shop

In this economy print shops are trying to maximize the investment of their imaging systems.  Printers of all sizes from a local quick printer to a large commercial printer all share the same goal, keep the equipment running jobs so it will pay for itself and put money in their pockets. With the age of the light production equipment and the improved quality of digital, more and more of these printers are utilizing this technology.  Ways of keeping this equipment running rely on finding alternative ways of reaching the market and their customers. In this fast pace world, people don’t want to run down and drop off their information, submitting jobs in an easy and efficient method is becoming the most important need.

How can you do it?

Everyone has email… let’s have customers email us documents.  

That can work sometimes but how good are our customers at giving us accurate directions in an email about creating a finished document?  How large can the files be with our current mail system and will our mail provider allow us to receive those big files in our inboxes?  

What about FTP? Will that solve our problems?  

Who will manage that FTP server? We still have the issue of our customers filling out a form correctly, ensuring the job ticket is correct and requiring the operators to contact the customer to ensure proper imposition. 

What if the customer wants a 16-page brochure printed and saddle-stitch bound with a different cover and body media?  I work in the printing business so I could probably describe how I want this done; however most customers don’t speak the printing language.  What if I want the cover to be printed on 100lb gloss cover and the body to be 80lb gloss text?  Maybe you only have 80lb gloss cover in stock?  Do you make a special purchase for my job or call and ask if I will take the 80lb cover you have on hand? 

Enter Web Submission…

Web submission allows users to visit your website to order their particular job and given the exact choices available, they can make their selections on media, finishing and quantities through a simple “shopping cart” method that most people use every day. They simply upload their document through this new portal on your website and the job ticket options they just selected attaches to that document to be printed.  This makes getting things printed at your shop easy, efficient and your site will be perceived as being more professional with these capabilities.

Just like any software solution the market is full of choices.  Take some time and look into this option so that you can stay in the game and keep those printers producing for you.

-Troy: Production Specialist

Monday, November 7, 2011

Welcome to NWG

Welcome to the Northwest Group's Technology Blog.  First a little history...
The Northwest Group is comprised of three sister companies, Copytronix (CTX), QBSI, and Pinnell. Each company covers a different geographical area within Oregon and Washington.  The Northwest Group is part of Global Imaging Systems.  Each company has their own history and story on how they became a part of the Northwest Group which can be found in depth on their individual website.

In 2007, Global Imaging Systems and all of it's operating units became a wholly owned subsidiary of Xerox Corportation. This created an incredible benefit to our customer base by not only giving Global more national power but also allowing us to sell and support the Xerox product line.  We are able to take a consultative approach to providing solutions by building relationships.  It is by truly understanding our customers and their business that we are able to provide the appropriate solution and increase their productivity.

This blog is to share information with you, because as the experts in the business, we feel it necessary to communicate and share that knowledge so that your business can continue to grow.  We will share case studies, new products, new software solutions, recommendations, statistics, whatever we feel will benefit you.  So please read, respond, interactive and enjoy. Thanks!