Why On Demand?
Using IBM technology, Troksa said, Ingram prints scanned 6 x 9' paperbacks, all containing black-and-white pages and four-color covers, in PostScript, PDF and TIFF formats. The inside pages are printed on a black-and-white press and put together with a Duplo perfect binder; the cover is printed on an InfoColor 70 printer, he said. By the end of this year, he added, Ingram is targeting about 10,000 titles to be printed on-demand.
Oracle Warehouse, Troksa said, wanted "to get more out of their system" by printing on-demand. With 800,000 black-and-white software manuals printed in house, only 16 percent of jobs made a two-day turnaround, and 27 percent made a three-day one, he explained. The company wanted to produce more 7.5 x 9.5' manuals, reduce production cost and decrease turnaround time. As a result, he reported, upon the implementation of IBM tools, production cost was decreased 30 percent, reliance on outside print vendors was also reduced, and a 45 percent savings (amounting to $750,000) was reported in the first seven months. According to Troksa, Oracle currently uses the InfoPrint 4000 IR 1/2 464 ipm and IBM InfoPrint Manager software.
By printing on demand, Troksa noted, CCH also improved turnaround. CCH, which offers tax documents, black-and-white, on lightweight 22# off-white paper, needed to speed up delivery process for tax books. The company, he said, felt that storing their products in-house was inefficient and wanted to eliminate labor-intensive updates.
New York City-based American Bible Society has decided to print on-demand not just Bibles but also limited-distribution titles for scholars, said Alain Sasson, director of Scripture production, during "Digital Short-Run Case Studies." The company had been publishing these titles for years and wanted to avoid storing them in the warehouse.
When deciding to print on-demand, Sasson advised publishers to consider the size of the title, the number of pages and the quantity ordered. Quality of printing is also important, he remarked, and "something an art director would be sensitive about." For his company, he said, the size of the books printed on-demand was appropriate and the number of pages didn't exceed 400 (most were in a 200 to 250 page range), but it was the quantity that drew them to print on-demand, Sasson reported. Some books that took up to a year and a half to sell were requested in quantities of 75 and under. For his company, print-on-demand provided flexibility, fast turnaround and savings, Sasson said, by eliminating the cost of makeready, film, plates and storage. Some books that are printed on-demand (Bibles, for example) are likely to be used over long periods of time, on a daily basis, he added, so having a durable cover for them is a must.