Harnessing Digital Workflow

A University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA) case study by Rochester Software Associates.

It’s great to work with a company that will develop beyond the product. Other companies may offer similar software, but RSA will go a long way.

Mike VanLancker

Associate Director, UCLA Mail, Document & Distribution Services

Customer Background/Solutions Overview

Yeri Garcia, Production Manager

UCLA is both the most applied-to university in the nation and a health care provider (UCLA Health) that ranks as one of the top three hospitals in the nation, with 150 primary care and specialty care offices that receive nearly 2 million patient visits annually. Enrollment at the University is over 43,000, with 4,300 faculty and 54,000 staff.

The Printing Services department has provided data center printing since assuming the responsibility in 1996, printing transactional, informational and financial documents, checks and offering mailing services. UCLA uses a combination of RSA’s standard software (i.e. M.I.S. Print, QDirect) and custom software for check printing.

The PHI and HIPAA-complaint print center also supports campus and department printing needs using an antiquated FoxPro-based tracking system that is only available to print center personnel, and a Web to print system that came to its end of life, necessitating replacement in 2014 by WebCRD.

Data Center Changes Deliver Opportunity

Four years ago, the medical center shut down its mainframe. The print center had built a reputation as a competent, secure, and reliable data center print provider, so the mainframe work naturally migrated to the print center. To produce the output, the print center just utilized different solutions and workflow than they had in the past. And, because of this expertise, new business came their way in the form of new health billing applications (previously handled by off-campus vendors– insourced). “Physician support management likes working with us. We have the control and the responsiveness and treat it with a lot of respect. We were able to bring the physician billing back inside from a giant transactional house,” said Michel VanLancker, Associate Director, UCLA Mail, Document & Distribution Services. “The data center work is what really has kept our print center going. It allows us to support more robust services on the campus side.”

M.I.S Print, QDirect and a Custom Solution Automate Mainframe and Data Center Printing

There are many inputs to RSA’s QDirect output manager– UCLA’s mainframe, FTP and other workflow software such as imposition and composition tools. One of the incoming sources is LCDS format from the mainframe. RSA’s M.I.S. Print™ automatically converts the data stream so that it can print on the various printing devices in the print shop. M.I.S. Print also automatically uses the resources to create the final output and place it into QDirect with the proper attributes (job classification and category) to allow the system and the operators to efficiently route jobs to the appropriate printer in a timely fashion.

QDirect’s automated workflow routes to different printers and queues and is configured with automatic commands to automatically pick up the right stocks. “All the operators have to do is load the paper. Before this configuration was set, it used to take about 4.5 hours to print. Now it takes just an hour and a half, a savings of 3.5 hours. The jobs are just

sitting at the printer. The operator just bundles up the jobs with the right labels and sends them to the right place,” shares VanLancker. “QDirect is handy. It’s the first place I look each morning. If jobs aren’t there, I look upstream.” QDirect is also used at the end of the data process to manage the print and accounting.

The efficient automated QDirect workflow has also eliminated the manual process of Registrar work like student transcript printing. Previously, every PDF had to be opened manually and sent to a printer. Now, all of the files are automatically printed overnight and waiting for the print operator in the morning.

RSA also developed a custom check security application. This has allowed UCLA to move away from a labor-intensive check security process that involved removable media, multiple safes, and was less secure.

Campus Work- Conversion to Web to Print Still In Process

The print center wants to fully convert campus and print work to an electronic workflow to make it easier for everyone. About half of the print on demand work is coming into the shop in various ways– mail, Dropbox, walk-in, local pick up, etc.– and needs to be manually processed through the old homegrown system. The other half is now produced through WebCRD. “We looked at other software, but based on our experience with RSA and the quality of their products, we chose WebCRD,” said VanLancker.

Based on the shop’s needs, they purchased WebCRD with advanced authentication to provide single sign on, as well as the MIS module, and have since added the WebCRD Dynamics desktop module for variable data template creation. “Users can easily make their edits to the variable templates, and it takes just seconds to update them. And,

WebCRD automatically imposes the jobs, saving even more time,” notes Van Lancker. The print shops experiences other benefits from variable templates, too: “Our WebCRD customers generally seem quite happy with

the ease of use, and the variable templates are easy to set up and allow for us to expand our online variable offerings with more elegant templates for business cards, envelopes and more stationery items. Being able to add many more variable templates has and will continue to reduce the need for interaction with our creative team. We are seeing a reduction in pre-prints because customers don’t miss things now, which saves us money.” VanLancker also has noticed an increase  in jobs that include covers, coils, padding, etc., because professors can see these options in WebCRD when ordering.

WebCRD is flexible enough to handle different workflows. For instance, prescription pad printing uses an outside compliant printer; drug information cards use an approval group process.

Medical items in the WebCRD catalog include stationery and business cards, physician pocket information cards, appointment cards, patient education materials and nursing manuals, event materials and hospital menus.

Campus printing applications include course packs, syllabi, training manuals, envelopes, business cards and other stationery, invitations, brochures, grant applications, postcards, posters, exams, calendars, newsletters, books, badges, table tents, presentation handouts, variable print letters, and other variable correspondence.

WebCRD keeps us relevant. Everyone wants to order online.

Mike VanLancker

Associate Director UCLA Mail, Document & Distribution Services

Benefits of an Automated Workflow- Growth

Having an efficient electronic workflow helps capture transactional print and hold revenue steady. The automated workflow also simplifies tasks for print center staff and customers, offers increased credibility with customers and enables growth and added services. VanLancker explains, “Offering access to us on the Web provides a workflow that meets the customer’s needs, even if it’s intricate billing requests. It also keeps us relevant. Everyone wants to order online.”

One example of a new project is a housing staff award program. The print center receives data and uses an automated process to print and mail the awards.

What’s Ahead

The next focus is around image capture and document management, a huge initiative for the university. While this in-plant continually evolves their digital workflow to adapt to changing customer needs, they will continue to turn to RSA for assistance. “RSA is talented. They develop around our needs. It’s great to work with a company that will develop beyond the product. Other companies may offer similar software, but RSA will go a long way,” commented VanLancker.

© 2016 Rochester Software Associates, Inc. All brands and product names are registered trademarks of their respective companies. 3/2016

Study Quick-Look:

Application Study Industries

Solutions Used by Customer


  • Reduce job touches in the print center
  • Low awareness of services
  • Reduce time– consuming manual order processing and tracking
  • Streamline billing process


Print Center Staff:12
Annual Impressions:14 Million


  • M.I.S. Print™
  • QDirect™
  • WebCRD™ with Print MIS and WebCRD Dynamics modules


  • 3.5 hours/day saved with QDirect
  • Acquired new business and increased customer base
  • Reduced design resource and re-prints

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