Teacher giving lessons to students

Web-to-print scores top marks with professors

by Ryan Kiley
Too many times, I’ve heard professors complain that what they get in return for a print order is not what they wanted.

University professors, whether they teach physics, Shakespeare or calculus, generate plenty of printed documents, such as tests, text books, seminar papers and lecture hand-outs. Pressed for time to meet bookstore deadlines, exam schedules and other commitments, they require the materials fast. And they expect 100 percent accuracy. 

A web-to-print solution can save time for both the professor and the print shop.

Whether a job is printed with the wrong number of copies, on the wrong paper, or just on one side instead of both; whether it was stapled in the wrong place or the tabs were not where they belong; these issues can be detrimental to a professor’s productivity.

These complaints are often common at in-plants that depend on email or over-the-counter submissions. Admit it—the specialized terms we use every day are foreign to non-printers, making it difficult for them to describe jobs in the same way we interpret them.

Along with confusing language, professors often forget information needed by the print shop, department charged, approvals required, delivery options, etc. Phoning or emailing for clarification eats up time and can cause the job to run late, irritating the professor.

A web-to-print solution can sidestep these obstacles, saving time for both the professor and the print shop.

Escaping panic mode

With web-to-print, instead of walking across campus or composing an email to explain the job, professors can simply take out their laptop, cell phone or other mobile device, click on the app, and tap on fields that specify all the information required to take the job from receipt to delivery. Not only that, but visual cues such as "staple or tabs go here," "the book opens this way" — ensure that everyone is speaking the same language. 

Web-to-print takes the panic out of rush requests for reprints and revisions.

Another advantage: By archiving jobs in a secure, digital repository, web-to-print takes the panic out of rush requests for reprints and revisions. The professor accesses the files and can then update them electronically. From there, the web-to-print solution prepares the job, translates the end-user’s intent into instructions, engages necessary workflows such as preflight, budget approval, copyright clearance, etc., and ultimately moves the job through the process smoothly and efficiently.

Speed, convenience, accuracy and security are sure to impress any professor — and customer approval matters to the life of any in-plant. 

Report: Revitalizing your university print shop in-plants

Learn more about how you can improve your print shop’s customer experience and organizational value. 
Ryan Kiley
Ryan Kiley is Director, Strategic Production Services, Production Print Printing Business Group, Ricoh USA, Inc. With expertise in software engineering, Kiley designs and implements software portfolios that help customers realize the maximum benefit of their investment. He is also a member of Ricoh’s Global Marketing Center where he assists in bringing services initiatives to a global audience.