1. G7 Certification
A G7 certified printer ensures that the printed sheets will match the proof that you approve, eliminating the need to travel for press checks.
2. Preflight Files
Make sure your supplier reviews your file with the approved dieline before they proceed with proofing. Catching any mistakes up front prevents additional costs down the road.
3. Environmental Stewardship
FSC and SFI certifications from your label supplier mean you can print those logos if you are certified as well, a nice differentiator in the marketplace! A supplier that uses alternative energy sources can also prove very valuable selling point for your customers.
4. Dedicated Customer Support Teams
Having key contacts throughout the organization guarantees you are kept in the loop throughout the stages of a project, from quoting to delivery. It’s important to have open lines of communication with more team members than the sales representative alone.
5. Moisture Control
A moisture-controlled pressroom keeps the moisture in the paper where it belongs. As opposed to conventional stretch-wrapping, loads should be shrink-wrapped on all 6 sides to ensure proper moisture content.
6. Moisture Monitoring & Testing
Your supplier should monitor and test the moisture in paper from the mill to your floor. The right supplier will have the proper testing equipment to make sure that the proper moisture levels remain in the sheet before the job ships, and make note of that moisture level right on the packing slip itself.
7. Understand your Converting Process
Make sure your supplier understands the equipment you run, and ask them to partner with your laminating and diecutting teams to ensure you maximize your converting speeds and efficiency. Your supplier can work with your team to pick the best glue for your specific application and conditions. They should have testing equipment on-site so they can determine which score and matrix combination will prevent score cracking.
8. Fast Turnaround
Let’s face it, speed is the name of the game. Your supplier needs to be flexible with hot jobs, which tend to be more the rule than the exception! PDF approvals help speed up timelines and should be considered.
9. Lean Systems
Make sure your supplier operates under the same lean principles as your organization, from quoting through delivery. Their lean facilitators should visit your organization to ensure the processes are aligned with optimal efficiencies and minimal waste.
Your team needs to know what is going on with each project. A Daily Production Update keeps everyone in the loop. An added bonus is an e-mailed POD as soon as the delivery hits your dock!