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In-Plant War Stories: State of Wisconsin Shows Battle Scars at Upcoming GRAPH EXPO Panel

In-Plant Printer Finds Optimum Configuration; GRAPH EXPO Panel Reveals All

  • Elisha Kasinskas
  • |
  • September 15, 2014

This article is the second of an in-depth series introducing each of the in-plant panelists on the GRAPH EXPO panel I'll be moderating on Sept. 29, titled "In-plant Panel: War Stories, Wise Ideas and Q&A." The session features in-plant leaders in Banking, Government and Professional Services.

Introducing: Tim Smith, State of Wisconsin Publishing & Distribution

Tim Smith has been employed by the State of Wisconsin for 23 years, the last seven as the Director of the Bureau of Publishing and Distribution. Smith has managed the print side and the mail side of the operations at separate times. Smith currently belongs to the Wisconsin State Mail Managers council and IPMA, and holds a bachelor's degree from the College of Wooster in Ohio.

Ranked as the seventh largest government in-plant, the 58 employee operation has a $10 million operating budget with an additional postage budget of $15 million. The in-plant produces 110 million impressions and outputs 44 million mail pieces annually. The work is publishing, on demand and mainframe printing, a lot of which involves personalized information. Services also include wide format print, ink jet labeling, CD/DVD production and bindery. The integrated mail facility offers a full range of intelligent inserting, metering, pre-sorting and hand work options. Typical work includes: court documents, parking tickets, tax bills, newsletters, social services and KID's program materials, unemployment materials, DOT work (licensing, registrations, etc.) and historical museum materials.

Tim has brought about many changes to the shop in his tenure, culminating in a move of the operations last November. He continually is tweaking the workflow to find the optimum configuration to meet changing work that comes into his shop. Like many in-plants, Smith is very customer focused – he calls it customer obsessed.

Years of consolidation left customers mistrustful that their jobs were understood and in good hands. Smith says, "There is no statute or requirement that any state agency has to use our services. If we don't get the job done somebody else will." Smith has been relentless in driving through the entire organization the necessity of satisfying at the highest level. This pursuit has paid dividends with customers now including print center staff in conversations about new jobs, changes to existing jobs or in developing new applications.

The Outlaw Web to Print 

Due to past print purchasing scandals, many states have decentralized print purchasing. In the last fiscal year, Smith began a procurement process for Web to Print software. The desire was to increase production volumes and offer their economies of scale to governmental entities outside of the Capital. Smith discovered that state statute did not allow the shop to offer their services outside of the Enterprise in Madison. The in-plant is spending the entire current fiscal year trying to get the statue changed. If they are successful this fiscal year, next year they will purchase and implement a Web to Print system.

Register Today and Read Upcoming Panelist Posts

Watch RSA's In-plant Insights blog for additional articles in the series about panelists Staci Hill, Freese and Nichols, or read the recent article about panelist Ron Balderson from the Navy Federal Credit Union.

These stories offer a sneak peek at what these in-plants have overcome and the information they will share in the session.


About the Author

Elisha Kasinskas

Elisha Kasinskas is Rochester Software Associates' (RSA) award-winning Marketing Director. She is responsible for all marketing, public relations, social media and communications, and community building for the firm. Ms. Kasinskas joined RSA in 2010. She is a Marketing veteran with over 20 years of experience in sales, product management, and marketing in leading product and service business to business and business to consumer firms, including Pinnacle (Birds Eye) Foods, Global Crossing, Windstream Communications, HSBC, and a number of regional high tech firms. She holds a Rochester Institute of Technology MBA, and a BS in Marketing from Radford University. Ms. Kasinskas is a frequent moderator for industry speaking sessions. She was awarded the 2015 In-Plant Printing and Mailing Association (IPMA) Outstanding contributor award, is a 2015 OutputLinks Women of Distinction inductee, and has secured multiple awards from the American Marketing Association (AMA) for recent work at RSA.

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