29 October 2017 Business

Integration on show as Tharstern heads for packaging

Tharstern will focus on integration during Ipex, while showing first steps towards handling estimating for cartons.

Tharstern will demonstrate connectivity to partners Heidelberg, Enfocus and Agfa during Ipex this week. Each will feature in a breakfast session where visitors will be plied with bacon butties directly from Tharstern’s Lancashire home.

However, in order to access the breakfast and the exhibition before its official opening at 10.00am, visitors will need to register. It will be worthwhile, global sales director Lee Ward says: “Customers increasingly want to find new ways of increasing efficiencies and integrating different workflows. MIS is now not only essential, it’s a critical component for successful businesses.

“These breakfast meetings at Ipex will provide a perfect platform for show-goers to find out latest integration developments. We’re proud to be sharing world-class knowledge through our partnerships with Heidelberg, Enfocus and Agfa, as well as numerous other companies.”

The MIS provider will also be demonstrating the latest applications from its increasingly comprehensive MIS suite, now edging into packaging as well as commercial printing. It will follow demonstration of the Business Intelligence functions that were also shown at the Print Show earlier this month.

Business Intelligence is a way for users to drill down into the data that the MIS holds and create user specific reports. This has been possible previously, but only to those with experience of CrystalReports. More commonly customers have commissioned Tharstern to generate these custom reports. “Business Intelligence takes this to another level,” says business development manager Ross Edwards. “The user dashboard can show the reports that the user wants by drilling down through the information held in the system.

“For example it can show the figures for an individual sales rep, the sales by sector or by customer. we are finding that customers are discovering the value of this sort of instant analysis of their business.”

The software involves interrogating hundreds of data tables that hold this information, combining a number of these tables to create the insight that is required. “Previously customers have asked us for this. Business Intelligence enables the customer to do it themselves," says Edwards.

The MIS supplier will also focus on its Advanced Imposition application which is in use at Elle Media and Sherwood, both producing greetings cards and needing to extract costs from a sheet to allocate to an individual order.

It has automated a lengthy and costly process and paves the way for Tharstern to bridge into carton and packaging printing. “We apologised to one customer we showed it too because at that stage the software took ten minutes to run through the calculations. But he was delighted. Advanced Imposition had automated a task that was taking two or three days.”

The software can group impositions by delivery dates, by substrates, by customer, offering the functionality that many online printers have developed in house and which drives the ganging aspect of their business.

This function will also open the door into packaging with developers at the business now working on integration with the formats used in both packaging print and display print where there is a similar need to assign costs to different items on a single sheet.

“We have also shown that it can be more cost effective for a carton printer to order a new die than try to fit an imposition into an existing forme,” says Edwards.

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Customised views

Customised views

Tharstern is enabling customers to select access to data and to view it as they like it using what the company calls Business Intelligence. At the same time advanced imposition is going to open the path to packaging companies.

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