SpotOn! Press has announced that E. & J. Gallo Winery is now using SpotOn! to monitor the company’s brand colors both internally and externally. Nine months since being introduced to SpotOn!, E. & J. Gallo has created new procedures for evaluating print quality based solely on the data they derived from SpotOn!.
“We had used another print verification tool, but it didn’t give us enough data and the target was too large. We found SpotOn! and knew this was the right tool for not only our internal use, but for our print vendors as well,” notes Frank Windgassen, Production Director for E. & J. Gallo Winery. “This is the best tool for evaluating printing conditions I have seen on the market.”
Print Standards Improve Quality
With something being printed every hour of every business day, Windgassen and his staff are kept quite busy monitoring print quality. “It is so much work to evaluate every element of every printed piece,” he says. “We take great effort in preparing our files correctly, only to have the print vary from vendor to vendor. We knew there had to be a better way. Not only can our print vendor see graphically how they are printing, we can see it too. We have tolerance targets and with SpotOn! we can very easily see if the printed piece is hitting the target. If it doesn’t then we get a discount on the printing or we have it reprinted.”
Every single file that is sent out for print includes the SpotOn! Control Strip so both the printer and E. & J. Gallo Winery can evaluate the printing. Several of E. & J. Gallo’s print vendors have SpotOn! loaded on their laptops so they can do evaluations press-side. The data can easily be downloaded and emailed to Frank or to management at the print vendor. “The proof of the quality of printing is in the numbers,” adds Windgassen.
Vendors Are Scored Based on Performance
E. & J. Gallo Winery has developed a new process for evaluating their print vendors that is entirely based on the data they glean from SpotOn!. “We randomly sample printed pieces from each print vendor and we create a score card on how well the printer is meeting our print standards,” notes Windgassen. “If they are not meeting our standards then we communicate how to get them back on track. We value our vendors, so we like to develop action plans to help them achieve compliance to assure they continue printing the highest quality pieces for us.”
SpotOn! has tolerances set for primary colors, overprint colors, neutral print density, and gray balance that indicate when printing is slightly or way out of tolerance. E. & J. Gallo likes their printers to be within the smallest tolerance possible. If the print is slightly out of tolerance then they talk with the printer about making adjustments to bring the printing back into tolerance.
“If the printer is totally out of tolerance then we talk about discounting the printing due to not meeting our expectations.” Remediation depends on the performance of the print based on the feedback from SpotOn!. “The software helps us communicate with our printers about color and consistency, as it provides a common way to evaluate print both from a printer’s point of view and a customer’s point of view, based on the graphs, numbers, and tolerances. Plus, it would just take too much time and effort to visually inspect every element of a printed piece. It just isn’t necessary when you use SpotOn! and it is so much more efficient.”
Bottom Line – SpotOn! Makes Process Control Easy
“The primary reason we use SpotOn! and encourage our vendors to use it, is how easy it is to use and learn to interpret the data,” concludes Windgassen. “The technical data it provides empowers our vendors to achieve the ultimate results in color management. SpotOn! has been a catalyst to improve process control both internally and with our vendors. The price point and the value it provides make it a tool that every print vendor and brand manager should have as part of their process.”