printIQ delivers on the needs of today and tomorrow

One of Australia’s most successful software businesses, printIQ, has dedicated itself to supporting and empowering the print sector with innovative technology that improves commercial performance and drives future success.

The privately-owned company has been delivering IT-based solutions to businesses for the past 22 years and has since grown to employ staff based in Australia, New Zealand, Canada, the US, and the UK.

It specialises in providing business solutions and custom software development to the printing industry – namely a seamless, end-to-end estimating, ordering, e-Commerce and production MIS that offers flexibility, control and visibility of a print business.

Case in point is printIQ reinventing itself with a corporate rebrand, which it has aligned with the significant transformation across the printing industry. While printIQ still operates under the same business name, its new branding includes an updated logo and tagline, along with an enhanced website experience for visitors.

“The new printIQ brand is an evolution of our previous branding and reflects our company’s ambition, drive, and determination to empower the printing industry through technology,” printIQ chief operating officer Rachel Davis said.

“Our new brand is more than just a logo; it’s a symbol of our commitment to putting our customers first and being their partners in success.”

This renewed focus on customer service and innovation is key to its success and the company has worked hard on both sides of this balance: providing customers with solutions for their current needs while developing products ahead of time so they can expect even more in the years ahead.

Davis added, “Over the last two years, we as an industry have faced some incredible challenges. Through it all, we have remained strong and resilient. Together, we have innovated and evolved.

“Customers will discover how printIQ has pivoted to help them successfully adapt to any changes in the market, including accessibility, automation and constraints in supply chain management and labour shortages.”

printIQ has reinvented itself with a corporate rebrand, which it has aligned with the transformations across the industry

At the front of minds

printIQ has exhibited at several recent tradeshows to showcase its latest range of products and solutions and to understand where the market is at. Most recently, it was at PacPrint, and also exhibited at Edge Rockies 2022, INFOFLEX 2022, and the RMX Network 2022 Spring Partner Executive Conference in the US, as well as the Sign and Digital show in the UK.

“As technology continues to evolve, it is more important than ever for printers to stay ahead of the curve and adopt new solutions that can help them grow their businesses,” printIQ sales manager Justin Webber said.

“Having spent time at the forefront of our industry, we know that printers are always looking for ways to improve their process. We’ve made some great progress at PrintIQ and are excited to showcase how we can help printers win.”

printIQ has been continually developing its systems and aims to satisfy customers by implementing the most comprehensive workflow in the market today into businesses in print.

The business is unique in that it updates its software several times a year following customer feedback and recommendations.

At PacPrint, it launched v45 of its software and Webber said, “it has already been a ‘game changer’ for many of our customers. The response at PacPrint was incredible and it reinforced that we are on the right track”.

This version simplifies how paper and materials are managed, improves line of sight for estimators and production staff, and makes it easier to maintain constantly changing prices. V45 also demonstrates a focus on building out the range of functions that can be carried out automatically or remotely.

The result is a huge step forward in how an MIS can help drive business, according to printIQ CEO Anthony Lew.

“The next challenge for our team has been to automate more day-to-day functions. By moving more of the estimating and quoting functions into the hands of customers and account managers, and streamlining of the accounting functions along with integrations with Xero, MYOB, Quickbooks and other finance packages, we can reduce the load in key areas,” Lew said

“We have further enhanced accessibility options, to open up business applications to work from anywhere. Combine this with a true Cloud-based platform and the end result is a mobile workforce that doesn’t have to be in the office to be in control.”

printIQ also recently launched its Small Business edition – a streamlined version of its enterprise software for smaller players in the industry.

“There are plenty of enterprise solutions in the market and it can be quite expensive and far reaching considering the needs of small businesses,” Lew said.

“So, we saw an opportunity to create a package for print businesses that have up to 10 staff but still need a solution in their business to help with improving efficiencies. It works as a Software-as-a-Service (SaaS) model – their server, cloud hosting fees, and the cost of the MIS, is all wrapped up into a monthly subscription.

“They have the flexibility to bring on more integrations or additional modules down the track with an upgrade path.”

Following a soft launch of the Small Business edition in the UK earlier this year, printIQ bagged eight sales in a month.

“That has really taken off because of the growth in the wide format and signage segments. The idea is to have all-encompassing solutions,” Lew added.

A one-stop Cloud print solution

The Cutting Edge in Sydney is one of the companies that recently installed printIQ’s software. Trading since 1999, it specialises in custom packaging and displays, priding itself on keeping up-to-date with the latest technology, trends, and practises.

When the pandemic hit, it faced a huge challenge as its outdated system couldn’t handle the sudden digital transformation the industry required due to employees having to work from home in hybrid environments.

Cutting Edge knew it had to proactively hunt for a cloud-based solution that could meet its evolving needs and ensure a perfect finish every time – even if its employees were working from home.

Word-of-mouth brought the business to printIQ, which suggested that the proofing module and ease of use would make the transition to a new MIS considerably easier for The Cutting Edge.

The Cutting Edge managing director Matthew Elliott said, “After years of trialling separate cloud-based production board systems external to our existing MIS, we now finally have these combined in a collaborative print-focused system”.

The build started in August 2021, and after a few months, the new MIS was up and running. From dedicated workflows to simplified proofing to calculators that deal with duty, freight, transfer margins, and financing costs so pricing is managed in a single system, The Cutting Edge quickly reaped the benefits of its move to the new MIS.

“With labour shortages and varying uncertain working conditions, we needed a one-stop cloud solution to keep everyone on the same page and maintain productivity. printIQ’s ability to have a live view of production, art and document storage, customer and supplier portals, and the access from anywhere did just that,” Elliott added.

The Cutting Edge also quickly realised the benefits of printIQ’s quoting system as to be competitive in today’s market, companies must provide clients with quick and accurate quotes. As such, The Cutting Edge increased productivity and efficiency, resulting in more than double its quoting speed without adding additional estimators to its team.

“printIQ was the only solution flexible to our needs. It has more than doubled our quoting speed, reduced our processing time, and brought our workflow up to speed. Finally, we have a solution that we can rely on now and in the future,” Elliott mentioned.

The Cutting Edge in Sydney is one of the companies that recently installed printIQ’s software

Meeting the challenges of a new MIS

Another company that has profited from its install of printIQ is Litho Superpak. Well known in the local manufacturing space, Litho Superpak has been in operation since 1985. From food to cosmetics, the Australian-owned company has become the standard for customer service within the packaging industry.

The company faced a problem when it was growing rapidly, but its production and quoting system couldn’t keep up with the demand. Litho Superpak looked at several different systems that would allow it to speed up order processing times while streamlining the paperwork that transforms a purchase order into a production ticket.

But printIQ checked a majority of the boxes required to build a sustainable, scalable system for Litho Superpak. Shortly after, printIQ provided the business with crucial support primarily due to the learning curve involved with an entirely new system.

“Coming this far and printIQ’s support to get us this far has been huge. We would not be in the position we are today without their level of support and their level of care to get us to this stage. And for that, I cannot praise them enough,” Litho Superpak head of implementation David Browne said.

Since then, the glaring inefficiencies that existed with the outdated system have been remedied. Not only was information manually entered and done so multiple times, but it was often incorrectly duplicated.

With printIQ, an employee enters the job information once, allowing Litho Superpak to control the accuracy as they can control information and mitigate it before it becomes a production issue.

Increasing bottomlines with printIQ

printIQ has been continually developing its systems and aims to implement the most comprehensive workflow in the market

printIQ’s customer success extends beyond Australia. With growth in its organisation, ColorDynamics in Texas, US, felt that its initial MIS was no longer fit for its organisation and wanted an upgraded, modern and flexible system.

The company, which is a full-service print communications powerhouse that provides custom printed and visual communication products to clients across North America, then partnered with printIQ.

The result was the install of a cloud-based system that allows 24/7 access from anywhere on any device, automation, costing, problem-solving solutions, and more. The production staff can manage the floor while customers quote, order, and track all from within the same application.

ColorDynamics vice-president of manufacturing David Dey said, “The build team comprised of print specialists that developed and implement the printIQ software. The build team understood the industry and the challenges, making the transition to the new system much easier”.

With the number of products and categories ColorDynamics is dealing with, flexibility was key with this new system. Now, it has a system that could specialise in the various formats, rather than focusing on one general segment like other traditional systems.

“As a printer that offers the gamut from web offset, sheetfed, wide format, digital, to special components, printIQ gave us the flexibility to build a system that worked around all our different segments. And we found out after building it, we had even more flexibility than we realised in the beginning,” Dey added.

The result: ColorDynamics saw the number of orders being produced jump from 2,700 to 7,500 with no additional production coordinators. In fact, it said it saw nearly a 567 per cent increase in quotes with no additional estimating staff since installing printIQ’s quoting system.

Ballyprint, in Europe, is another international success story for printIQ. It is a commercial printer offering small format, large format and label work with design services, to a customer base across Ireland.

Based in Ballymena, about 30 minutes’ drive north of Belfast in Ireland, the company was set up in 2009 as a copy shop. Rapid expansion into commercial print led to the business needing a modern, versatile MIS to handle its spread of print work across small format, large format and labelling.

It wanted to replace its existing five-yearold system, which was largely dedicated to large format work. After much research, it chose printIQ in 2020 and despite interruptions due to COVID lockdowns, it has now implemented the solution, and the cloud-based remote access is being progressively rolled out to its customer base.

“Our first MIS system was a custom-built system, but we outgrew this very quickly. We then adopted a MIS system from the US, which primarily catered for large format work. We were attracted to its production boards, which did help our process become leaner. It did however lack the estimating intelligence we required for quoting, which we still had to do manually,” Ballyprint managing director Aaron Klewchuck said.

“What drew my eye to printIQ was the simple navigated design and uncomplicated user interface. Once I had a closer look at printIQ, I was very impressed with the pricing engine and the end-to-end management, which could help us grow as a business.

“The biggest thing for us as a company has been the process of estimating. We have gone from spending hours on complicated quotes to being able to send this in minutes to a customer. The pricing engine in printIQ is amazing, the transparency and in-depth information regarding a job has led us to see where we have been losing margin on historical jobs.

“Artwork automation is also another driving factor, with the seamless integration with Enfocus Switch, which has let us deploy pre-press staff to other departments.”

With only a few months from implementing printIQ, Ballyprint’s goal is to increase its bottom line by 15 to 20 per cent by the end of the year.

“With the help of printIQ I am totally confident this is achievable!” Klewchuck added.

Even with these successes under its belt, printIQ doesn’t have plans to slow down any time soon and aims to keep empowering printers.

“We’ve come a long way since our inception, and it’s all thanks to our passionate team who work tirelessly to create and implement innovative technology for print shops across the world,” Davis said.

“We are still passionate to keep developing products that empower printers to overcome any obstacle they may face, and we believe that the technology we create can be a key part of that success.”

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