DME Commands Complex Workflows Efficiently Thanks to HP SmartStream Production Center

At DME, the presses run day and night, but the company doesn’t think of itself as a printer. “We are marketers that use print campaigns as an output,” says Kathy Wise, President. “One of our biggest strengths is using customer data in variable programming.”

For nearly 10 years, the Florida-based direct marketing company tracked the production of its direct mail communications using a robust, customized management information system it built from the ground up. But after sustained company growth and an increase in Web-to-print production, its needs changed. DME needed a more versatile and efficient technology for managing its production environment.


Supporting personalized


To meet growing customer demand, the company added its first HP Indigo digital press (Booth 1241) and XMPie software (Booth 1202) to support more personalized communications.

Although DME had enhanced its technology, it still struggled to track orders and production. The company was using an email workflow to manage high volumes of short-run orders, which it quickly realized wasn’t productive. It needed a program that would easily group its jobs for production. Luckily, in 2011, HP asked DME to participate in the beta test program for HP SmartStream Production Center.

Today, this technology orchestrates DME’s fully automated workflow, which receives orders from its websites and routes jobs through complex workflows from prepress through printing and finishing equipment, then on to packing and shipping. During every step of the process, HP SmartStream Production Center delivers comprehensive, real-time information about each job. With full control over production, DME has increased its production efficiency and reduced its labor costs, giving it powerful capabilities to win more customers.

Personalized data is vital to the communications DME delivers to its customers, many of which are in the automotive industry. Thanks to the company’s HP Indigo 7500 Digital Press and HP Indigo 7000 Digital Press, working in tandem with its XMPie software, DME is able to produce high-quality, personalized pieces at the speed its clients demand.

Further enhancing its capabilities, both of DME’s HP Indigo presses run through the HP SmartStream Production Pro IN200 Print Server. “The HP Indigo print server is extremely fast and productive, handling even our most complex variable data jobs,” says Wise.

HP SmartStream Production Center now manages thousands of jobs per day to all nine of DME’s presses—including its HP Indigo technology and non-HP presses—and its finishing equipment. “HP SmartStream Production Center monitors every job on every press in real time,” says Wise. “Through the use of the configurable dashboards, we know exactly what jobs are here, when they are due, and where they are,” she says. HP SmartStream Production Center also allows DME to quickly tailor its production processes to meet its specific needs. The software’s optimization tools, including load balancing and job batching, further enable productivity.

“Better organization yields more efficiency,” says Wise, who notes DME’s production efficiency has increased by 20%. With employees spending less time per job, DME’s labor costs have shrunk by 20%.

Smoother production has helped the staff deliver an improved customer experience. “Our customer service representatives can better answer customer inquiries and locate, change, or redirect jobs quickly and easily,” says Wise.

Backed by powerful technology, DME will continue its mission to deliver personalized products and innovative customer service. A main priority will be ongoing enhancements to its Web-to-print system, so the company ensures cutting-edge ordering options. With HP SmartStream Production Center, DME will be able to keep up with future customer demands. Wise concludes: “The better and faster we serve our customers—the more valuable we are as a company.”