Print MIS are meant to make print businesses more agile in terms of work processes, production, approval workflow and collaboration between teams. Traditional print MIS are more of paper based with mechanism and are more prone to human mistakes leading to huge costs of efforts, money and team disturbances. Traditional MIS are being replaced by automated Print MIS software integrated with web to print disrupting the whole process of keeping records and maintaining information. Moreover efficient resources tied up with manual recording of jobs and orders can be put to use in other activities requiring human touch.

Considering implementation of Print MIS or transitioning from one system to another, both can go wrong to huge extent if not done properly. Print MIS is more than just being a technology but it is like backbone of the whole printing business because it touch bases every single aspect of designing, customers, production, delivery and feedback.

With print businesses going digital with web to print software, Print MIS is more about right integration as well as implementation. Businesses with web to print software should look for right Print MIS technology to be integrated into the business while the latter should look for simplified in-built platform or modules for Print MIS that can come with web to print software.

Web to print solutions are more of failure for most businesses than success, the primary reason being businesses taking it as ‘technology initiative’ than the ‘business initiative’. One of the reason of smooth adoption of web to print solutions is the lack of streamlined back end operations where teams are still capturing data manually. Good web to print solutions provide integrated Print MIS solutions for effective transition of tasks done manually.

Why Print MIS feature is crucial for Web to print?
While businesses are being focused on look and feel of their new web to print website and product configurations, lot of web to print software lack useful print MIS features. Print MIS features that are really crucial for any printing business are Print Ordering, Artwork Approval Workflow, and Quotation Workflow, Job sheet and order management and Production Workflow Management.

While web to print serves most purpose for your clients, better interactions, presence and getting more sales, the goal of Print MIS is to ensure efficient back- end operations. Print MIS help business in identifying cost issues, reducing production flaws while having visibility up to management level between the actual and estimated costs of work produced.

A web to print solution providing integrated Print MIS feature saves you and your team from the hassle of integration and implementation of new MIS solution or transition of existing MIS. Print MIS transitions are usually tougher because it is being used by each and every department of business. Businesses cannot trade off employee productivity with the transition of technology looking to the losses that can be incurred in few weeks. Implementation or transition of print MIS is a business initiative. Small and medium print businesses have limited manpower. It is difficult to find out a single person who understands end to end process and facilitate software vendor to get the implementation done right.

The dilemma of getting unified web-to-print and MIS solution

Print businesses usually go for separate MIS and Web to print vendor because both of them are two separate technologies involved in different business processes. This is true to a certain extent because there are MIS software that lack in providing best customer-facing experience as well as web to print software with which businesses have to compromise on the required MIS capabilities.That’s the reason businesses tend to go for separate software vendors for web to print and MIS capabilities.

There are few things that you can look for in the integration of web to print and MIS capabilities –
1. Complete Integration – Few web to print software record the orders and just pass on records to MIS system. Businesses need to maintain records separately in web to print as well as Print MIS systems. This leads to duplication in terms of pricing, inventory, orders, sales etc. An integrated print MIS system with web to print leads to only one final entry in MIS systems avoiding any duplication and manual errors. Look for web to print having an integrated functionalities of MIS establishing proper communication between two systems.

2. Print Ordering Management –Advanced web to print solutions provide facility of customizing design based on customers’ requirements leading to varied pricing for same kind of printing and material. This advanced print requirements required print ordering like off-the shelf ready stock products, instant quote with unlimited pricing variables, fully customizable products and custom orders with file upload with varied pricing and workflow. It will be difficult to integrate these different logics to MIS and produce instant live quotes and orders accordingly. A web to print with inbuilt MIS module will be able to take care of it without human intervention.

3. Job Sheet and Order Management –Integrated MIS and web to print ensures that as soon as orders get created, they are reflected in MIS. This leads to instant job creation and streamlining production process while avoiding any cost wastages.

4. Real-time status updates – Some of the best web to print software providers even allows real-time status updated in terms of adding special notes and comments by customers before putting order into production.Check notes, artwork corrections and artwork approval are also recorded and avoid any hassle of reprinting and updating real-time status to both print providers and customers.

When industries are moving forward with digital technologies, print businesses think they are in businesses that are going to get extinct. They are not realizing that digital technologies are changing the way processes are being done till and not eliminating business models. Printing businesses need to be technology driven and embrace changes to stay ahead of the curve and compete with digital assets coming.

Author's Bio: 

Abhishek Agarwal, CEO & Co-Founder of Design’N’Buy comes with a huge experience in Web-to-Print & IT. With a mission to deliver the best and innovate new ideas in w2p he and his team always deliver challenging and exciting results. Delivering the best and with utmost perfection has always been his life’s motto.