Digital Production Solutions

Increased global competition and accelerating advances in technology have led to the highest levels of customer expectations with regard to quick turnaround time and high quality. To achieve a true competitive edge, digital printers must maximize their production performance and then keep it at that level. Primary ways printers can achieve and maintain a competitive edge is to employ effective marketing management, proactive focus on innovation, optimize processes, and utilize efficient production control systems. Printing Industries of America provides the most extensive resources and hands-on support in the industry to enable digital printers to meet these global challenges.Four of the dynamic initiatives include

  • Digital Production Assessment. This will help your company be more efficient and produce higher quality work. This can lead to reduce costs, less waste, and highly satisfied, repeat customers. 
  • Digital Production Excellence Accreditation. Printing companies that pass this accreditation can use their DPEA in their sales. This powerful marketing tool can be used to assure your customers that you provide consistent, high-quality digital work. 
  • Digital Printing Equipment Analysis. Verify that your digital print equipment is performing optimally to industry and manufacturer specifications to ensure that you are not wasting time or materials—items saved then go straight to the bottom-line. 
  • Digital Color Management. The effects of controlled color are quantifiable results— improving print quality, cutting costs, minimizing re-runs, and saving you time and money.

Digital Production Assessment


A Digital Production Assessment (DPA) is a comprehensive evaluation of digital printing operations conducted by experienced Printing Industries of America consultants and staff. The scope of a DPA is to determine the current state of production operations, effectiveness of methods and procedures, equipment conditions, process performance, and quality output.

The key contributors to product quality that can be identified are as follows:

Quality due to…

  1. Customer specifications and expectations for the reproduced product.
  2. Equipment designed capabilities
  3. Materials characteristics and compatibility
  4. Equipment conditions and conformance to proper equipment operation, maintenance, and support

The Printing Industries of America DPA process follows a defined and unbiased methodology to reveal the true current state of a digital production operation.

  1. Identify and Define issues and requirements.
  2. Examine and Confirm current business goals, production and process capabilities, procedures, and issues through measure of key processes, personal observations, and examination of workflow and process performance.
    • Data and information will be attained from various sources, including interviews company management, administrative and production staff, and, where applicable, customers. 
  3. Analyze assessment findings, comparing them to industry benchmarks, best practices, and manufacturer specifications.
  4. Utilize Troubleshooting Methodology to discover root causes of technical and operational problems.
  5. Customize Improvements and Solutions to integrate into your current processes and workflow and improve your company’s overall efficiency and profitability.
  6. Recommend Courses of Actionfor process improvements, implementing controls, and establishing effective standards.

A Printing Industries of America Digital Production Assessmentprovides a basis for recommendations and a road map for focusing on improving productivity, raising quality, shrinking waste, and trimming downtime in operations.

Sample Digital Production Assessment Findings

Digital Production Excellence Accreditation


The Digital Production Excellence Accreditation (DPEA) Audit Program is one of the only official recognitions that a digital printer has implemented and maintained an effective management and quality control system based on specific criteria developed by Printing Industries of America’s Center for Technology and Research (formerly GATF).  

The DPEA audit, conducted by Printing Industries of America staff, includes: assessment of specified documentation, observations of daily activities and practices, and review benchmarks of key processes, as well as interviews with the company’s management and production staff. The key issues that the audit is intended to determine is if DPEA requirements have been established; whether standard operating procedures and tasks are effectively being completed; and if specified frequencies are being followed for proper equipment calibration and process controls.

Recognition Certificate: On passing the Digital Production Excellence Accreditation audit, the printer will receive Printing Industries of America’s Digital Production Excellence Accreditation (DPEA) Certificate (which includes a letter verifying compliance and the DPEA certificate). DPEA provides digital printers, customers the assurance that the digital printer is capable of providing consistent digital print quality and services.

Digital Printing Equipment Analysis


Printing Industries of America’s Center for Technology and Research originally created the press test analysis and test form. Printing Industries of America continues its long tradition of equipment examinations by now performing digital press analysis which employ a particular methodology developed by the Center for Technology and Research and utilize the Altona Test Suite to determineif digital print equipment is performing to accepted industry and manufacturer specifications.

The Altona Test Suite (developed by bvdm, ECI, FOGRA, and ugra for analyzing digital print equipment) contains a series of test elements, including measurement elements for setting up and checking output systems such as proofers, conventional, or digital printing systems; visual elements which allow checking and adjustment of color accuracy of press simulation on a proofing system; and technical elements that address overprinting and font formats from a technical perspective.

Digital Color Management

Better color results in quantifiable results—improving print quality, cutting costs, and increasing profits. Printing Industries of America’s Center for Technology and Research provides digital printing color management assessments, proof-to-digital printer-to-press calibration to print standards and specifications and creation of custom data sets.

For more information, contact Jim Workman at 412-259-1710 or consultinggroup@printing.org.

Published on Wednesday, July 8, 2009 (updated 05/29/2014)

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