There are a lot of printing industry challenges facing businesses in today’s digital oriented society. However, AI (Artificial Intelligence) has great potential for opening up a variety of new revenue streams for print businesses by improving the effectiveness of the end-to-end printing process. These improvements range from print job creation, to continuous production and machine service optimizations.
Most printing businesses have never considered producing personalized catalogs on digital presses because of the huge costs and the time consuming and tedious nature of manually adding personalization into static catalogs. However, there are new AI technologies available that can provide amazing solutions to the printing process that are already changing everything.
Printers are now able to, through AI, automate tasks that previously created bottlenecks in the printing process. Such new options are now capable of increasing your printing business’ daily output. In addition, you may want to offload some of your work that is labor intensive and therefore expensive to a machine that will optimize the results automatically. This would also create time for your team to focus on business strategy. A few examples of the benefits of the use of AI in new printing technology include:
Applying Smart Algorithms
By applying smart algorithms embedded in the software, AI works to determine the optimal and precise document layouts for any project. These automatic adjustments will minimize printed waste by optimizing imposition.
Improving Print Outcomes
With the automation capabilities of AI, it is possible to get rid of bottlenecks in the printing process by moving higher-quality jobs up the queue, by monitoring presses workloads and routeing new jobs to idle presses, by cutting down on misprints and by reducing print waste. AI technology is capable of recommending image quality, frame, paper alignment, sizing, etc, that will improve efficiency and quality. AI software is also capable of introducing its recommended changes during the print job and without human involvement. Additionally, AI will automatically shift idle presses into standby mode thereby minimizing their use of energy.
Keeping Data Safe
One of the printing business challenges that is shared with all other businesses is how to keep data safe. AI provides rich insights using data and network activity to detect threats to print security in real time, including activation protocols for remediation. Keeping in mind that 60% of entrepreneurial businesses are experiencing security breaches resulting in loss of data, print security should be a business priority. AI uses its vast data collection and network scanning capabilities to detect print security threats and keep your data safe. AI can even activate the protocols necessary to remediate any identified threats, keeping your data safer.
There is a vast and growing market for product customization in the printing industry that will require new printing technology. AI is able to provide many benefits for customizing print products as can be seen in the following example.
With AI tools your business can connect its printers for a highly efficient management of jobs that significantly reduces human involvement while increasing print shop efficiency. This connectivity with AI also allows print shops to use multiple printing methods from a single centralized system, without the need for a lot of worker oversight. These kinds of production management capabilities can allow business owners to expand the scope and reach of their work.
Data and Analytics
AI has vast capabilities for collecting data about any and all digital printing presses. This data can then be sent to Analytics companies whose tools and algorithms analyze it, compare it to performance expectations, and provide technical adjustments or recommend software updates that your business should make.
Because of the vast data that AI examines it will soon be capable of using that data to provide predictive analytics that can determine needs for service even before machines fail.
Direct Mail and Catalogs
When printing materials for direct mail and catalogs, it is vital to collect as much data about the mail recipients as possible. AI is able to grow that collection of data more rapidly and then use the data it collects to automatically customize the content of the mailings or catalogs to meet the relevant needs of specific groups or even of individual recipients.
One of the printing industry challenges that can get expensive, is personnel costs associated with press monitoring. With the use of AI, presses are now capable of self-monitoring. These AI presses use multiple sensors to constantly check their production and quality. They use collected information to make instantaneous adjustments even in the midst of the production process to improve things like image quality and paper alignment. Self monitored automation gives your business only supreme quality printing outcomes without human oversight.
Record Keeping with Digital Automation
Many businesses are still using paper documents to keep records. A new process called RPA (Robotic process automation) offers the opportunity to digitize those records. This process uses AI enabled software that automates the human paper documentation processes into a digital automation system of record keeping. There are already a number of business sectors like banking and insurance that use this intelligent automation based on AI and machine learning. The software uses an algorithm to translate handwriting and typing and convert the information into digital files.
What Artificial Intelligence Does for Print Shops
The truth of the matter is that despite all of the printing industry challenges, printing companies have an excellent opportunity to gain a wide variety of benefits through the use of software and equipment that will bring AI into their businesses. Artificial intelligence offers print shops many opportunities to employ online data, to create targeted mailings, newsletters or even product catalogs that are based on customer views and responses in the websites, to automate data protection or to improve printing outcomes.
AI is an exciting opportunity for printing businesses of all sizes and stripes to expand into new printing technology and improve overall efficiency, security and automation. With an increasing demand for quick turnaround times and shorter runs on print jobs these AI driven automations will help keep your business growing and competitive.
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