At the 20th edition of Connect, the annual Electronics For Imaging (EFI) users conference, EFI is helping print and packaging professionals from around the world achieve more with new technical and business management solutions that can give them a competitive edge in operations efficiency and help drive growth with new market opportunities. The extensive range of innovations featured at the Jan. 22-25 event included enhanced versions of EFI’s Productivity Suites, the print and packaging industries’ leading end-to-end business and production workflow software offerings.
For long-time Connect participants such as Heeter, a Canonsburg, Pennsylvania-based commercial printing business that uses EFI’s Midmarket Print Suite MIS/ERP workflow software and EFI Fiery digital front ends, Connect is a must-attend annual event, one that challenges employees and managers to conceptualize creative solutions for streamlined production and increased profitability.
Each year, Heeter sends several employees to Connect, an event that reflects the company’s strategic innovation goals. “We encourage our people to think and to challenge normal business practices ““ to not be a victim of established processes,” said Kirk Schlecker, Heeter’s vice president of operations. “Get out there, figure things out, come up with better ways to do things, and get ahead of the game on new software releases.
“We also ask employees to look for ways we might be underutilizing the solutions we have,” Schlecker added, “and Connect is a great venue for this. When they return from the conference, we work together to create best practices documentation and act on those for the remainder of the year. EFI Connect is a huge value for us.”
The Midmarket Print Suite Heeter uses is one of several comprehensive MIS/ERP workflow solutions that have new features as EFI introduces version 7 for all of its Productivity Suite products. Designed to help users improve throughput, reduce waste and efficiently manage commercial print and signage and graphics operations, it includes new features for cross job ganging and roll media management. The Midmarket Print Suite now also offers dynamic scheduling, planning and impositioning in cloud configurations, and better data collection and digital print job visibility within the workflow for easier, more accurate scheduling.
Version 7 of the EFI Packaging Suite includes streamlined web-to-print re-ordering and improved tools for managing flexible packaging, including blown film reel weight capture within the Suite’s shop-floor data collection component. The EFI Corrugated Packaging Suite’s new version includes a product builder interface for estimating multi-part sets, a browser interface for production planning, and digital print and preprint estimating, scheduling and data collection tools.
The EFI Enterprise Commercial Print Suite for large and multi-plant commercial print operations offers new, easy import product specification tools that significantly reduce the time needed to estimate and schedule new jobs. And, version 7 of the EFI Publication Print Suite simplifies the process for incorporating contract pricing on jobs. Plus, Publication Print Suite users can now utilize EFI’s comprehensive shipping component technology.
EFI is also announcing the latest-version EFI MarketDirect integrated customer engagement and revenue enablement platform, offering new social media, 3D visualization and inventory management capabilities. The MarketDirect software premiering this week at Connect also includes the addition of award-winning EFI Digital StoreFront web-to-print software, now rebranded as MarketDirect StoreFront.
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