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Two printing services staff members, left, and client Rachelle Hernandez, admissions, look at a press sheet, standing next to the Heidelberg press.

Printing consultant Bob Swoverland, designer Sysouk Khambounmy, and associate director of admissions Rachelle Hernandez review a press sheet next to the six-color, 40-inch Heidelberg press in the Printing Services plant on Como Avenue.

Great Service: Printing Services

Putting technology and versatility to work

By Pat Snodgrass

From Brief, May 12, 2004

Every spring, the Office of Admissions on the Twin Cities campus mails letters to 2,500 prospective students announcing that they have received some of the 110 scholarships for which they qualify. It has always taken several staff members and up to a week to complete.

Until this year. Rachelle Hernandez, associate director of admissions, talked to Bob Swoverland, a representative at University Printing Services.

"She asked how they might do this better," says Swoverland.

The result: A new, sophisticated look to the scholarship packet for prospective students, and a dramatic savings in staff time. Printing Services' electronic, personalized printing process merged and collated the materials online in a fraction of the time it used to take, streamlining a tedious process.

"Printing Services has become an important, strategic partner with our office," says Hernandez. "Because of their outstanding expertise in the communications and fulfillment areas, the effectiveness of our communications has been dramatically improved."

"They have saved our office time and money, and they have consistently provided us with extra-mile customer service," says Rachelle Hernandez of Admissions. "We give them the highest recommendations."

"Our objective is to recommend options to help departments effectively match their goals with printing and mailing budgets," says Printing Services director Dianne Gregory. Using these options can lead to substantial savings of both time and money.

Technology and versatility

Printing Services' philosophy is, "Put our technology and versatility to work for you."

The scholarship mailing exemplifies how the technology in Printing Services can help other offices, too. From electronic file transfer to direct-to-plate print processing, Printing Services keeps University staff equipped with up-to-date printing technology.

The Center for Human Resource Development recently needed new brochures for its Work Life and Relocation Assistance programs. Printing Services consultant Gary Stoll came over to share ideas.

"He returned a price quote the next day, listing several options, and loaned us samples of color copies that would be available on their newly installed machine," says Laura Cabral, the senior office specialist who coordinated the projects. "The quality was superb and the price was reasonable."

"In addition, Gary arranged to have their graphic designers clean our graphics file for the clearest print possible," says Cabral. "We always receive our orders on time and delivered to our office."

Creative suggestions, quality, a fast turn-around, and convenience helped both programs get their messages out in style and before the deadline.

Printing Services now offers training seminars for University communicators to give tips on how new technology impacts routine printing needs and orders. Last year's seminar, "78 Ways to Save: Stretching Your Printing/Mailing Budget," offered solutions to economical and efficient printing. This year's session, "Choices: Understanding Alternatives in Printing and Mailings," introduced the new digital press and how it expands color-personalized printing and short-run, four-color process options.

Another convenience is printing information and samples at your fingertips. An online portfolio shows images of booklets, pamphlets, magazines, posters, and stationery produced by Printing Services, showcasing why they've received several graphic design awards over the past few years.

With services that span T-shirts and mouse pads to logo design, Printing Services seeks to have an economical, practical, and creative solution for customer print goals.

See the Printing Services online portfolio at http://www.printing.umn.edu/design/portfolio.htm.

Pat Snodgrass is the communications coordinator at the Center for Human Resource Development. She can be reached at 612-625-8824 or snodgras@mail.ohr.umn.edu.

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