Wide-format print is one of the most vibrant sectors of the digital print market, as evidenced by the 22,000 people who made their way to Fespa London in June 2013. There are however, three major reasons why the wide format print is increasingly gaining popularity among people, this may be as a result of increased demand to meet customer demands as need for commercial printer specialist.
There is still a high rate of technological development in wide-format print. This has therefore resulted into wide opportunities for market as new ways of package prototyping as well as fabric printing emerge each day.
There is however a problem, despite the speed of production and resolution improving each day, the rate at which the devices are being integrated into wider owner business and production workflow has been largely neglected.
The wide format printers are operated in isolation as compared to all the other kinds of ERP systems. Basically this happens because the customers do not trust automation as well as lack the interest and awareness towards them.
Wide-format work typically requires more complex finishing than other types of print, sometimes to the point where the direct print costs are only a small part of the total job value. Complex one-off jobs will typically require creative input, management time, shipping and installation in addition to the printing process. With high levels of customization being the norm, there may be a reluctance to believe that automation can help in what has always been a labor-intensive business.
This manual approach can lead to inefficiencies in production management, and may result in material wastage and quality inconsistencies both between devices and over time. It is worth to understand that over time it becomes tedious not to be able to load color uniformly as well as to utilize the machines efficiently without leaving some of them idle.
Further to this, it is important to note that any particular point that manual process occurs is a point whereby extra costs are incurred which are left unaccounted for. Job costing models based on ‘per square metre’ pricing can lead to work being done at a loss, especially where time spent on file preparation before output is not recorded. The manual method mainly does not provide all the relevant information and therefore as there are no bottle necks already in place, it means that some costs that have already been incurred will be left unaccounted for.
The market for this printer is growing rapidly and becoming more competitive, as a result more pressure is going to be put towards automating each step.